Re: Grice and conditionals

From: Paul S. Dixon (
Date: Mon Sep 21 1998 - 02:16:29 EDT

On Mon, 21 Sep 1998 00:07:47 EDT writes:

>Thank you Jonathan for the nice summary of Grice's book. I apologize for
>Gobble-d-gook in the original message. I was lazy. The reason I brought
>question up is that all the other EI MH clauses in the NT are
conditional. You
>have to work with the logical tranformation of If not B, then not A in
orde to
>understand most of them because they have negatives in the protasis and
>apodosis. According to John Baima the gloss "except" or "but" for EI MH
>only correct if the unnegated protasis is true according to the author
and is
>exclusively true. In many passages (Matt 11:27; 13:57; John 3:13) the EI
>clause is preeminently true, not exclusively true, so the rendering of
>"except" or "but" changes the meaning of the passage.

Yes, thanks, Jonathan for your time and trouble. Much appreciated. I
personally find all this very interesting and am looking forward to
more from you on it, Charles, since you are delving into it so much.

You mentioned the EI MH construction. Incidentally, I found that the
construction in Mt 19:9 (.... MH ...) is almost always translated,
although there appears to be no other occurrence in the NT where MH (with
no EI or EAN) is ever translated such. The justification for such is
an appeal to a supposed ellipted EI. The "except" translation may be
unfortunate, especially if it gives the impression that the negation
for the case of the immoral wife wherein if the man divorces and
then he does not commit adultery) is to be understood.

Paul Dixon

>Charles Powell
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