Re: TOU GNWNAI AUTON Phillipians 3 9

From: Steven R. Lo Vullo (
Date: Sat May 06 2000 - 21:49:18 EDT

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<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Eddie,</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Carl is absolutely right about GNWNAI not being a
second aorist. Mounce, in his book _The Morphology of Biblical Greek_, calls
EGNWN a "root aorist." Says he, "When the personal ending is added&nbsp;directly
to the verbal stem in the aorist, it is called a 'root aorist.' MI verbs in the
active and middle are root aorists (e.g., hISTHMI &gt;&nbsp;ESTHN), as are BAINW
(*BA &gt; EBHN; v-3d), GINWSKW (GNO &gt; EGNWN;&nbsp;v-5a), DUW (*DU &gt; EDUHN;
v-1a[4]), and EPIPETOMAI (*PET &gt; EPTHN; v-1b[3]).... Root aorists are easily
confused with second aorists, which however use a connecting vowel."&nbsp;As a
"root aorist" GNWNAI takes the active ending NAI rather
than&nbsp;the&nbsp;second aorist EIN&nbsp;or the first aorist SAI. I think many
people call this type of verb&nbsp;a "second aorist" for the sake of
convenience, but that lends itself to confusion. Hope this is
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Steve Lo Vullo</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </FONT></DIV>
style="BORDER-LEFT: #000000 2px solid; MARGIN-LEFT: 5px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px; PADDING-RIGHT: 0px">
  <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial">----- Original Message ----- </DIV>
  style="BACKGROUND: #e4e4e4; FONT: 10pt arial; font-color: black"><B>From:</B>
  <A href="">Carl W. Conrad</A> </DIV>
  <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial"><B>To:</B> <A
  href="">Biblical Greek</A> </DIV>
  <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial"><B>Cc:</B> <A
  href="">Biblical Greek</A> </DIV>
  <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial"><B>Sent:</B> Saturday, May 06, 2000 7:56
  <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial"><B>Subject:</B> Re: TOU GNWNAI AUTON Phillipians
  3 9</DIV>
  <DIV>At 11:44 AM +1200 5/7/00, Eddie Van Gent wrote:</DIV>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT color=#000000
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite">&nbsp;</BLOCKQUOTE>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite">&nbsp;</BLOCKQUOTE>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>According to various grammars
    GNWNAI is a 2nd Aorist Active Infinitive. However, the 2nd Aorist Active is
    EGNWN with the stem GNW and according to the rules an infinitive is only a
    deponent if that particular tense is deponent in the finite verb
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>Second Aorist Active Infinitives
    have the same morpheme as the Present Infinitive so the word to be 2nd
    Aorist Active would normally be GNWN - being derived from the
    following-&nbsp; GNW + EEN (EIN endings were formerly EEN, which comes into
    play when contraction rules are applied) .This then would become
  <DIV>This is one matter wherein I think traditional description of ancient
  Greek verb morphology can only be confusing to new learners of the language,
  namely, the distinction between "First" and "Second" categories in the Aorist,
  Perfect, and so-called "(Aorist) Passive." The distinction intended between
  "First" and "Second" at each 'tense'-systems (and of course 'tense' is also a
  misnomer, since only in the indicative do these forms have any normal temporal
  reference)--the distinction is between "First" forms as the paradigm followed
  by the great majority of verbs that have an Aorist, Perfect, and/or (Aorist)
  Passive, and "Second" which, as usually applied, includes all archaic forms
  that deviate from the "First" paradigm, most of them having a distinct
  paradigm of their own: Second Aorists having "thematic" forms comparable to
  omega present and imperfect conjugation; Second Perfects having -A rather than
  -KA endings and a bewildering variety in ways of forming perfect tense-stems;
  Second Passives having -H rather than -QH endings.</DIV>
  <DIV>In my own teaching of ancient Greek I have made it my practice to refer
  to Aorists of the type EGNWN, hEALWN, EBHN, ESTHN as "Third" Aorists; I've
  also urged students to link together the descriptive language that's really
  more valuable than the ordinal numeral used: "First or Sigmatic or Alpha
  Aorist"--the sort formed with -S- as a tense marker and endings in
  -A/-AS/-E/-AMEN/-ATE/-AN; "Second or Thematic or O/E Aorist"--the sort formed
  like the imperfect by linking the thematic O or E to a stem before adding the
  endings -N/-S/-E/-MEN/-TE/-N; and "Third or Athematic ('Non-Thematic')
  Aorist"--the sort formed with a stem element which is a long vowel A or H or
  W, which may alternate with a short vowel form in A or E or O and to which the
  same secondary endings are attached directly--with no intervening thematic
  vowel--(-N/-S/--/-MEN/-TE/-SAN. EGNWN falls into this category; the stem is
  simply the long-vowel root form GNW.</DIV>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>To get GNWNAI one could take the
    2nd Aorist Stem GNW + HNAI (which is the normal 2nd Aorist Passive morpheme)
    and end up with&nbsp; GNWNAI after applying the rules of
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>W + H = W</FONT></BLOCKQUOTE>
  <DIV>No, the 2nd (which I'd prefer to call "3rd" Aorist stem is GNW, but the
  active infinitive ending is -NAI (just as for athematic present stems:
  DIDO-NAI, TIQE-NAI, hISTA-NAI. The form GNWNAI is NOT a contraction; moreover,
  although you might THEORETICALLY have a middle/passive infinitive GNW-SQAI,
  that function is taken over by the forms EGNWSQHN with stem GNWSQH- and
  infinitive GNWSQHNAI.</DIV>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>I can't find any reference in the
    following major Greek scholar's books that GNWNAI is a 2nd Aorist Passive
    Deponent:- Bill Mounce, Max Zerwick/Mary Grosvener, Barbara &amp; Timothy
  <DIV>I can't speak for them; but I don't think this distinction is very
  clearly treated even by Smyth's grammar (e.g. at the Perseus web site:</DIV>
  <DIV>At any rate, I think a Greek teacher has an obligation to make this
  distinction between KINDS of "Second Aorist" clear and show how it works. If
  anyone else cares to use my term "Third Aorist," be my guest, but the truth is
  that I did not invent it so much as I have sought to promulgate as a
  clarifying factor.</DIV>
  <BLOCKQUOTE cite type="cite"><FONT size=-1>Obviously if GNWNAI is in fact
    passive, the meaning of Phillipians 3: 9 and context could alter quite
  <DIV>Banish the thought! It is NOT passive. That would have to be GNWSQHNAI. A
  nice place to observe the alternation of active and passive is 1 Cor 13:12,
  where the verb is compounded as EPIGINWSKW and what we have is an opposition
  of future active with aorist passive: TOTE DE EPIGNWSOMAI KAQWS KAI
  <DIV>-- <BR><BR>Carl W. Conrad<BR>Department of Classics/Washington
  University<BR>One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314)
  935-4018<BR>Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314)
  726-5649<BR> <BR>WWW:></BLOCKQUOTE></BODY></HTML>


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