Re: EI = since (among other things)

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Sat May 30 1998 - 16:04:30 EDT

<x-rich>At 2:11 PM -0400 5/30/98, Jim West wrote:

>At 01:02 PM 5/30/98 -0500, Kevin Mullins <<> wrote:


>>I am willing to be swayed on this but you'll have to be more

>>To assert simply "he is wrong" will not be enough to convince me

>>and I hope few others would be convinced by it. Perhaps you could

>>specify some examples of why he is wrong or maybe even cite some

>>sources that say "he is wrong." I would ask for a similar defence

>>someone who asserted "Jim is wrong" I promise.



>Sorry. He is wrong here because he is talking about attic and
applying it

>to Koine. This is apples and oranges.

Yes, and OF COURSE Attic and NT Koine are two VERY different languages!
One of them speaks apples and the other speaks oranges! Is this
supposed to be a serious answer to a question?

>>> Help me here. I know the two are different in certain respects but

>>we cite sources and specific examples to support your statement.



>I recall somemthing being posted to the list just in the last week or

>which discussed the differences between attic and koine. I am sorry I

>not have that message- but I suppose someone will have retained it and

>can be checked rather than endlessly repeated.

The URL was (and still is):

<color><param>0000,7777,0000</param>but our question about EI has
nothing to do with those differences talked about there (and the best
thing about that summation is that it lists its sources in an initial

BAGD s.v. EI III. "In causal clauses, when an actual case is taken as a
supposition, where we can also use IF instead of SINCE: EI TON CORTON
.... hO QEOS hOUTWS AMFIENNUSIN ..." Mt's Temptation narrative is NOT
cited among the NT instances. It appears to me that this is no
distinctive NT Koine idiom but rather a simple case of a usage of EI
for "if" in the sense of "If, as we all know, it is true that ..." This
is not significantly different from the Classical usage of EI in
conditional constructions with the indicative.

Louw-Nida: <bold>89.30 EI</bold>b : a marker of cause or reason on the
basis that an actual case is regarded formally as a supposition -
SUZHSOMEN AUTWi 'and since we died with Christ, we believe that we
shall also live with him' Ro 6:8; EI TON CORTON ... hO QEOS hOUTWS
AMFIENNUSIN 'and since God clothes thus the grass of the field' Mt
6:30. In English it is possible to translate EI in passages such as Ro
6:8 and Mt 6:30 as either 'if' or 'since,' for the conjunction 'if' may
also refer to an actual event as a supposition. In a number of
languages, however, it is impossible to translate 'if God so clothes
the grass of the field,' for this would imply serious doubt as to
whether God actually does perform such an activity. It may therefore be
necessary in such languages to translate quite specifically 'because'
or 'since.'

NAS Greek: <bold>1487. EI</bold>; a prim. particle; <italic>if, whether
</italic>(a conjunctive particle used in conditions and in indirect
questions):-although*(1), if(345), in order that*(m)(1), no(m)(1),
only*(11), only(1), suppose*(1), though(7), though*(5), unless*(4),
until*(1), whatever*(1), whether(19), whoever*(3).

UBS Dictionary: <bold> EI </bold><italic>if; whether; that; if only,
surely; since; </italic>EI TIS, EI TI<italic>who(ever), what(ever);
</italic>EIPER <italic>since, if it is true that </italic>EIGE
<italic>if indeed

</italic></color>(Accordance is a wonderful tool for putting these
items together quickly!).

Carl W. Conrad

Department of Classics, Washington University

Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243 OR



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