[b-greek] Re: 1 Cor 10:7

From: Carl W. Conrad (cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu)
Date: Fri Aug 04 2000 - 23:07:29 EDT

At 8:01 PM -0400 8/4/00, Dmitriy Reznik wrote:
>Dear friends,
>Thank you for answering my questions about 1Cor 10:9. I have another one
>about 10:7:
>down to eat and to drink, and stood up to play).
>Why "stood up" is active and not middle, as if they caused somebody to
>stand up?

ANESTHSAN is really intransitive rather than active. This is another
problem involved with the way we describe Greek verb morphology. It is true
that the conjugation of the aorist forms of ANESTHN/ANESTHS/ANESTH KTL. is
called "active" but it might be more accurate to call those endings
"default" endings for voice. Some verbs may be accurately termed "active"
in terms of traditional morphological usage and still be passive in force:
EKPIPTEI hO OIDIPOUS hUPO TOU KREONTOS "Oedipus is sent into exile by
Creon," or APOQNHiSKEI hO SWKRATHS hUPO TWN AQHNAIWN "Socrates is put to
death by the Athenians."

On the other hand, those "second" aorists of the non-thematic type (I
prefer to call them "third" aorists to distinguish them from -SA and -ON
aorists) tend to be intransitive or reflexive, and verbs bearing any
reflexive sense are easily capable of taking on a passive significance.

But in any case, ANESTHSAN is not "active" in any real sense but
intransitive. The subjects of ANESTHSAN are not impacting anything other
than themselves.


Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu OR cwconrad@ioa.com
WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/

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