Re: Luke 12: 27

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Wed Jan 19 2000 - 06:45:10 EST

<x-rich>At 10:07 PM -0800 1/18/00, Joseph Garnier wrote:

<excerpt>I am having difficulty with the grammar of the passage:




It appears to mean: which is not a barn, nor a storehouse, but the idea

ravens/crows as either of those is ridiculous. Can someone with a more
established sense of reasoning tell me how is goes together, then
explain why.



The passage is Luke 12:24 rather than 12:27; the construction is a
relative clause with hOIS as a dative referring back to the ravens and
the syntax of it is Dative of possession: the Dative of possession
regularly appears with an existential ESTI(N) as here: "for whom there
is neither storehouse nor barn." The normal strategy for "Englishing"
this construction is to make the word in the dative the subject of a
sentence and convert it thus: "who have neither storehouse nor barn."

It's always been curious to me that the Dative of possession
construction is not made one of the very first constructions to be
learned among common dative constructions, because it's really an
everyday usage.

Carl W. Conrad

Department of Classics/Washington University

One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018

Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649



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