Re: accents

From: Stephen C. Carlson (
Date: Fri Mar 03 2000 - 07:28:00 EST

At 10:55 PM 3/2/00 -0600, Carlton Winbery wrote:
>Dr Rick Strelan wrote;
>>By what criteria does one determine accents. The accent on FARMAKOI in Rev
>>22:15 varies from textual edition to textual edition and even within the
>>same edition between 22:15 and 21:8! In this particular case, the meaning
>>could be affected altho it would seem to me that it is essentially, but
>>certainly not exactly, the same.
>FARMAKOI\ is nominative plural and the dipthong is short (OI and AI when
>they are the last two letters in the word are short), hence it can only
>take an acute or grave accent on the last syllable (oxytone). FARMAKOI=S
>(Rev.21:8) on the other hand has a long ultima and has the circumflex on
>the ultima (perispomenon). In nouns you determine the accent by looking in
>the lexicon.

The accentuation you have cited is indeed found in Tischendorf's GNT, but
in NA27 and UBS4, the words are accentuated as FA/RMAKOI (22:15) and as
FARMA/KOIS (21:8). The explanation you have given (OI in the nominative
plural is actually short for purposes of placing the accent) also accounts
for their the difference in accentuation in the nominative and dative
plurals. That explanation does not address, however, why some editions
make the nominative of FARMAKOS oxytone (FARMAKO/S) or proparoxytone

I suspect that older works uniformly accentated FARMAKOS on the ultima,
(e.g. in my Middle Liddell, based on the 7th ed.), but the modern trend
(e.g. in my LSJMG, ultimately based on the 9th ed.) is to accentuate
FARMAKOS on the ultima if it means a "scapegoat" but on the antepenult
if it means a "poisoner/sorceror." For justification of this approach,
LSJMG cites Herodianus's grammar, HERODIANI TECHNICI RELIQUIAE, ed. A.
Lentz, Leipzig 1867-70, vol. 1, p. 150. I do not have ready access to
this work, but if anyone does, I would appreciate it if they would look
it up and report it to the list.

Stephen Carlson

Stephen C. Carlson              
Synoptic Problem Home Page
"Poetry speaks of aspirations, and songs chant the words."  Shujing 2.35

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