RE: Task of Translation (was Wallace: Beyond the Basics)

From: Jefferson, Robert C. (
Date: Mon Aug 09 1999 - 10:57:31 EDT

Carl's comment did spark my question.
That like most of his article was beneficial for us little greeks.
Along with others who say that Greek for them is not an end in itself to
them but rather a means to an end.
The end being usually defined as NT exegesis.
As for the "mind of God" I would never presume such a thing.
I too see the struggle that you say you deal with and my question is
therefore valid.
There is great variety in the current grammars on the market.
What should a little greek do? Buy Kittle? Robertson? Who?
I know nothing of Wallace's book except what is said here
In other words it is a valid question seeking a valid response.
You know should grammar:
Get into the head of the author (only) or
Help the modern exegetical method.
Another is how to balance these two.

I can conceive of a grammar based on what the ancients thought they were
I can also image a grammar based on 20th century catagories.

Something in the summer to chew on,


        -----Original Message-----
        From: Carlton Winbery []
        Sent: Monday, August 09, 1999 10:33 AM
        To: Biblical Greek
        Subject: Task of Translation (was Wallace: Beyond the Basics)

        Robert C. Jefferson wrote;

>Should a modern grammar of a "2000" year old dead language reflect
the needs
>of the current audience or of the original writers?
>And what is the methodology of determining either of theses?

        This question was in response to Carl Conrad's very thoughtful and
        respectful comments on Wallace's syntax book. He has asked the
        that we have all struggled with for years.

        I consider the basic purpose of all we do to be to get into the
        writer's head (some would seek to go behind the curtain to the mind
of God
        but that involves much more than is on the page). That alone would
        incomplete unless we can find ways to express those results so as to
        the understanding intelligible to modern persons. The methodology
for doing
        either task is the subject of our endless debates and cannot always
(as we
        see regularly) be isolated from the fruits of historical,
        linquistic, economic, political studies. We have chosen on b-Greek
to focus
        primarily on the Greek language of the first century (without clean
        boundaries) in the Graeco-Roman world. Though we all regularly go
        this part of the task gives us quite enough to chew on.

        Dr. Carlton L. Winbery
        Foggleman Professor of Religion
        Louisiana College
        Ph. 1 318 448 6103 hm
        Ph. 1 318 487 7241 off

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