Re: GAR and Paratactic Connectors

From: Steven Craig Miller (
Date: Thu Oct 14 1999 - 10:47:37 EDT

To: Carl W. Conrad,

<< Am I going to have to "explain" what "explain" means? >>

You can try giving the meaning of 'meaning,' or try to explain 'explain,'
but to "explain what 'explain' means" might just confuse me. <g>

<< The NRSV's translation conveys the force of the GAR in more normal
English. To be sure this "why" is an interjection rather than the
interrogative adverb that we would punctuate with a question mark, but it
is an expression of surprise at what one has just heard from another, and
it does indicate that what one is saying bears a causal relationship to
what preceded it. This is Pilate's response to the crowd's screaming
STAURWQHTW! The implicit force of the Greek GAR is: "What evil has he done,
to make you insist that he be crucified?" The explanatory force is there. >>

O well, yes, after you add "to make you insist that he be crucified" to
your translation, then it has explanatory force. <g>

<< I would add that another idiomatic English alternative I've suggested to
students for GAR to get away from "for" is "after all." That would work
nicely in Mt 27:23. >>

That seems to make sense.

-Steven Craig Miller
Alton, Illinois (USA)

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