[b-greek] Locative to Patient in NT Greek

From: clayton stirling bartholomew (c.s.bartholomew@worldnet.att.net)
Date: Thu Sep 28 2000 - 15:45:21 EDT

I am looking for an example in NT Greek of verb argument which would
normally have the semantic function "locative" but actually appears with the
semantic function of "patient." This may never happen in NT Greek but some
of you who know what I am getting at here (Cindy, Randall, Daniel) may be
able to answer this.

The question came up in Givon's* discussion of semantic functions within the
clause. Givon suggests that an argument of a verb which would normally have
the locative semantic function (e.g., arguments with verbs of motion) can in
some languages be promoted to the semantic function of patient. Givon states
that this change signifies a higher degree of salience for the constituent
with the patient function over the constituent with the locative function.
The "patient" is more involved in the action of the main verb and may
undergo some sort of change of state whereas the "locative" is unaffected by
the action in the main verb.

A simple example in English is:

#1 John went into the house. (locative)
#2 John entered the house. (patient)

Here "into the house" has the locative semantic function and "the house" in
#2 has the patient semantic function. Givon states that "the house" in #2
undergoes a change of state and has a higher salience than "the house" in

I looked through Louw and Nida's Semitic domain #15 (spatial movement) to
see if I could find an example of this phenomenon in NT Greek but I was not
able to. I suspect that some of you folks who have been doing this kind of
analysis longer than I have might have an example of this right at your
finger tips. Perhaps this phenomenon does not occur in NT Greek.


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew

Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

*Page 98-99 of: Givon, Talmy. Syntax: A Functional-Typological Introduction
vol. one Benjamins, Amsterdam, 1984.

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