Date: Fri May 01 1998 - 10:44:05 EDT
Carl W. Conrad wrote:
> The point I was making however had to do with the FORM, the -QH-
> aorist with active endings, a form which only in the course of Greek
> linguistic history came to have regular association with passive meaning
> and which, in quite a number of Greek verbs is simply the standard form of
> an intransitive or even active aorist. Traditionally this class of verbs,
> which most commonly have middle voice forms in the present tense, is called
> "passive deponents" (a term which I have argued is a misnomer because the
> phrasing suggests that they are odd-ball verbs that don't behave as we
> think they ought to behave). In this category are such verbs as
> POREUOMAI/EPOREUQHN, BOULOMAI/HBOULHQHN, DUNAMAI/EDUNHQHN, none of which
> involves any passive notion at all.
Thanks, Carl ~
So when this ancient [to koine] 'deponent' verb form is found in the
aorist [within a koine text] with what later came to be identified as
the passive infix -QH-, it must be remembered that it IS an ancient
[not later] form, in that it can only be understood [now, in the koine
text] as a middle voice, and then either transitively or
intransitively, thus carrying an active or middle [respectively]
force. This is wonderful...
Which [QH] makes it [the aorist] the middle voice in the opening of
the Oddyssey, where it carries both a transitive and an intransitive
force, BECAUSE there is no passive. [Intransitive in that he 'roamed',
transitive in that he was caused to roam against his best efforts not
to roam, but to return home]. And thus shows how Homer used the middle
transitive to handle what we would call a passive voice that to him
would not have been a part of his verbal expression. Have I got this
right? And the 'strong' aorist without the infix -QH- would have
simply been active indicative.
So it is no wonder, from this example of usage in Homer, that QH later
became the passive infix, because it here so clearly carries the
passive [to our later thinking] force, as well as the middle.
Am I getting this right?
The other item that arises here is with the strong aorist form of the
'deponent' [ancient] verbs... Does it [the aorist] lose the middle
voice unless it is reinstated with QH? The issue arises because in
koine the same infix has active force in transitive usage... Or does
it?... Consistently? Would it be perhaps better just to think of
deponents as 'hanging around yet' forms, still used but in declining
usage, and still understood in the same way that they were understood
anciently?... Almost like idioms?
Thank-you again, Carl...
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