From: Carl W. Conrad (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Fri Sep 22 2000 - 11:41:47 EDT
At 10:39 AM -0400 9/22/00, Bart Ehrman wrote:
> Apologies for the neologism, but I'm working with Ignatius here....
> Ignatius was in a hurry and, frankly, had a few other things on his
>mind. Whatever the reasons, his letters are frequently, uh, rushed. I
>have a BIG question about what to do with them. Does the translator work
>to make sense of the thoughts Ignatius was expressing, and correct his
>grammar in order to do so? Or does s/he leave the sundry inconcinnities
>(and mistakes) to give a sense of the "tone" of the letters?
> It's a particularly pressing question with regard to the occasional
>anacolouthon. For example, off the bat, first letter, first paragraph
>(you can skip the Greek if you want simply to answer the bigger question
>without a specific in mind): APODEXAMENOS EN QEWi TO POLUAGAPHTON SOU
>ONOMA, hO KEKTHSQE FUSEI DIKAIAi KATA PISTIN KAI AGAPHN EN XRISTWi IHSOU,
>TWi SWTHRI hHMWN, MIMHTAI ONTES QEOU, ANAZWPURHSANTES IN hAIMATI QEOU TO
>SUGGENIKON ERGON TELEIWS APHRTISATE.
> Well, that's supposed to be a sentence (or two sentences). Some
>translators make it into a sentence (or two sentences); others leave the
>hurried sense, which then is very difficult to construe in English.
> My basic question is not so much with how to translate this particular
>passage from Eph. 1:1 (I've thought, though, about translating SUGGENIKON
>ERGON as " the work we have in common as members of the same family"; why
>use two words when twelve will do?), but what to do with the problem
> Any opinions/thoughts would be most welcome.
This is not altogether unlike the problems in chapter 1 of the NT Epistle
to the Ephesians, where one seems to need to make arbitrary decisions
regarding what are really important and what are less-important syntactic
boundaries and regarding how few English sentences one can fit all the
content of 1:3-10 into.
My own view is that it would be wrong to go very far to conceal the reality
of the rather reckless composition in a translation that smoothes out the
rough edges. I wonder about using the dashes and letting the anacoluthon be
recognized by readers of the translation, somewhat like: "Since I've taken
note of your much-loved name--you own that name by righteous nature,
faithfully and lovingly in Christ Jesus our Savior, since your are
imitators of God, and you have quickened anew in the blood of God our
shared task and brought it to a full completion." I don't think that does
too much violence to the construction of the original; at any rate, that's
how I think I'd deal with the problem.
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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