Re: Acts 3:16, NIV translation

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Mon May 04 1998 - 15:45:47 EDT

At 12:06 PM -0500 5/4/98, Paul S. Dixon wrote:>That was helpful. Thanks,
Carl. This apparently explains the NIV
>thinking. The word order of the Greek is often lost in the translations.
> So, we are somewhere between wanting to retain the word order (FORM) and
>retaining the CONTENT. How about something like this?
> "and on the basis of faith in His name, this one, whom you
> see and know, His name has made strong."
>A little awkward, perhaps, but true to the content and form, and

Yes, although it is indeed awkward at the end, because we can't invert
subject and verb the way Greek can. That is why I like to use relative
pronouns and expletives in a translation in order to preserve the
rhetorical force of the word-order in translation. When we try to remain
LITERAL in our translations, we tend to be either wooden or unidiomatic,
and very often both. My view is that we ought to grant at the outset that
the two languages are structurally quite different and then do what we can
in translation to convey both WHAT the original says and HOW it says it,
but by HOW I mean not reproducing the original structure but reproducing
the original rhetorical emphases.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649 OR

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