From: Iver Larsen (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Fri Feb 09 2001 - 09:14:15 EST
Sean Winter made the following comment to me, which I trust it is in order to
copy to the list, since I am adding some further thoughts in my response that
may be of general interest.
Sean wrote in response to my query about the NovT article:
"The basic claim of the article (which I think from memory uses TLG searches to
establish the case) is that in these double acc. plus infin. constructions the
first accusative is always the subject (so Rom 12.2; 2 C0r 13.3(?); 8.6; 13.7;
Incidentally he is supported by Stan Porter in an article "Word Order and Clause
Structure in New Testament Greek: An Unexplored Area of Greek Linguistics Using
Philippians as a Test Case:, Filologia Neotestamentaria 6 (1993), 177-206.
The examples you cite are interesting and give pause for thought. I only note
that in the last two, where the subject does appear to be the second accusative,
use EINAI. Do you think this makes a difference?"
Thanks for giving me a few examples from the article. Then I can at least study
those and get a rough idea of the basis for their claim.
Yes, in a way it is significant that EINAI is used. The reason is that EINAI is
a word with little semantic content and therefore occurs late in the sentence,
if it occurs at all, often after the subject and object. Another important
aspect is whether the subject of the infinitive is a personal pronoun or not. If
it is a personal pronoun, it reflects an inflection in the verb in the
corresponding sentence with a finite verb form, unless the pronoun is emphatic.
My suggestion is that we should look at how the sentence might have been phrased
in a finite form (which I did for Phil 1:7). When this finite verb sentence is
transformed into an infinitive with accusative, I assume the word order would be
kept as far as possible and this determines the word order in the infinitive
clause. The fact that the accusative pronoun subject is an independent word
allows for it to come before the verb for emphasis as in Rom 12:18. Therefore, I
think the conclusion the article comes up with is not well-founded.
In Rom 12:2 (EIS TO DOKIMAZEIN hUMAS TI TO QELHMA YOU QEOU) the object for
DOKIMAZW is a whole clause and the finite sentence would have been something
hWSTE/hINA DOKIMASHTE TI TO QELHMA TOU QEOU.
Focus is on the verb idea and it is to be expected that hUMAS will occur
immediately after the verb as it does
In 2 Cor 8:6 (EIS TO PARAKALESAI hUMAS TITON) we have the same kind of
construction where the semantic idea of the verb "urge" is prominent and the
pronoun subject in the infinitive construction is drawn out from the verbal
In 2 Cor 13:7 (EUCOMEQA DE PROS TON QEON MH POIHSAI hUMAS KAKON MHDEN) we again
have a very similar construction where the underlying sentence in command rather
than prayer form would probably be: MH POIEITE/POIHSATE KAKON MHDEN.
The focus is on the content of the verb and it is natural to explicate the
pronoun subject immediately after the verb.
In Phil 1:10 we again have a prominent verbal idea and hUMAS explicates the
subject from the finite verb ending.
These examples do not warrant the general conclusion of the article, because
there are other important factors that seem to be ignored.
The construction in Phil 1:7 is quite different. It contains an idiom which
would need an overt personal pronoun as object: "to have someone in the heart".
I would expect that "have in the heart" is a semantic unit ECEIN EN THi KARDIAi,
and therefore it would be natural to explicate the implied subject from the
finite verb after the whole unit and keep the personal object in its position.
That is why I suggested that
1a) ECETE ME EN THi KARDIAi "You hold me in the heart" would be transformed
1d) TO ECEIN ME EN THi KARDIAi hUMAS
2a) ECW HUMAS EN THi KARDIAi "I hold you in the heart" would be transformed
2d) TO ECEIN HUMAS EN THi KARDIAi ME
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