[b-greek] what is a station? (Shep. 54:1-2)

From: Bart Ehrman (behrman@email.unc.edu)
Date: Thu Sep 14 2000 - 17:10:47 EDT

   In the fifth Similitude of the Shepherd of Hermas, we're told that a
conversation takes place between the Shepherd and Hermas, while the latter
is fasting. The angel asks why Hermas has come out so early in the day,
and then there is a brief interchange: TI ORQIRINOS hWDE ELHLUQAS (the
angel asks: why have you come out so early); 'OTI, FHMI, KURIE, STATIWNA

   I'm inclined (well, just now) to think that the Greek reader is
supposed by the author to know the Latinism STATIWN, and so I'm leaning
toward a translation something like this "Why have you come out so early?"
"Because, Lord," I replied, " I have a duty." "And what," he asked, "is
the duty?"

   Or should I think instead that the reader -- and the angel -- do *not*
understand the Latinism, and so translate it as "Why have you come out so
early?" "Because, Lord," I replied, "I have a station." "And what," he
asked, "is a station?"

   (I realize, by the way, that STATIWN does not have an article; but
I'm not sure how significant that is for the translation)

   Any thoughts?

-- Bart Ehrman
   University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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