[b-greek] Re: In response to Aspectual only change

From: clayton stirling bartholomew (c.s.bartholomew@worldnet.att.net)
Date: Tue Nov 14 2000 - 20:15:27 EST


I agree with you. People find a way to make themselves understood.

What makes me probe the question of the relationship between aspect and verb
marking is the phenomenon of predictability. What I am saying is, you can
read along in a Hellenistic Greek text and before you see the verb and its
form you can predict what the form will be. Why is this so? Because the
tense/aspect information is being carried somewhere else in the text, at
some other level of the language system.

This verb morphology predictability allows one to also speculate with a high
degree of success about textual variants. In other words you can play the
game "guess what the Majority Text will read here." When you run into a verb
marked with a tense/aspect that is contrary to what you predicted then you
can almost always find a group of manuscripts that changed it to what you

So I am not saying that formal tense/aspect marking of the verb is
irrelevant in Hellenistic Greek or that we can ignore it. I am just saying
that tense/aspect information is provided in other ways than the formal
characteristics of the verb. I think the best place to look for an answer to
this is in the semantic structure at the phrase and clause level or above.


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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