From: clayton stirling bartholomew (
Date: Tue Nov 17 1998 - 16:22:45 EST

BAGD and Louw&Nida suggest that hUPARCW and EIMI can be used somewhat
indiscriminately as the existential verb. However, Henry Alford in a comment
about Acts 16:20-21 suggests that these words have a different distribution
even if they have a similar meaning. He suggests that hUPARCW is used in
contexts where the speaker is offering new information that he wants to
highlight or draw attention to and that EIMI is used in contexts where the
speaker is simple stating a matter of fact which is generally known.

Alford points out that when Paul claims to be a Roman (Acts 16:37) he uses
hUPARCW but when his assailants claim to be Romans the use EIMI (Acts 16:21).
Alford also cites the following passages for reference on this subject Acts
17:27,29 21:20, 22:3, Gal 2:14, John 3:4, 4:9, Rom 5:10. Knoweling (EGNT)
seems to approve of Alford's view on this topic, but I cannot find anything in
a contemporary work or a lexicon which would support this distinction.

Is this distinction valid?

Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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