RE: Tense and Aspect Definitions

From: George Blaisdell (
Date: Tue Mar 09 1999 - 14:25:29 EST

>From: Rolf Furuli [heavily snipped]

> I would just like to focus on... the relationship between
>aspect and time... with an example for the consideration of
>those interested, namely Jude 1:14:
>This is a prophecy which must refer to the future. How >should
we translate HLQEN?

>I agree with Mari that aorist is not a past tense but only >the
perfective aspect.

>If now, we view aspect as semantic, >and
aorist is perfective with RT intersecting ET at the >coda,
there is just one way to translate HLQEN, >namely as a
future perfect "the Lord will have come with
>his holy myriads".

>However, if we view aspect as subjective, we could
>either translate the clause as future "the Lord will >come
with his holy myriads" or as future perfect >"the Lord
will have come with his holy myriads", >or perhaps
even as past tense (provided we signal a >retrospective viewpoint)
"The Lord came with his holy >myriads.".

Rolf ~

Thank-you for your clear and inspiring post. [Customary clarity,
unusually inspiring, for you!]

I would like to ask you to slow down for a moment using this example and
show how it is that "the RT intersects the ET at the coda."

I am seeing a 2nd aor imperative followed by an aorist indicative, and
am having trouble locating the coda and the two times involved [RT and
ET] and how it is that they "intersect."

As well, if I am getting you rightly, subjective viewpoint is that of
the speaker of this prophesy, yes? And objective viewpoint is that of
the event of which he is speaking?? And as translators you are asking
us to bear both in mind? [With the concomitent requirement to
consciously choose between them?]

For myself, I simply translate this as: "Behold! The Lord comes in his
holy myriads!" And by so doing I hope to avoid having to choose the one
horn or the other of subjective/objective dillemma, while honoring the
visionary a-temporality of the aorist.

Do I succeed? [I have this lingering feeling that I'm not going to get
off THAT easy!!]

Warm regards ~



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