Date: Sat Mar 24 2001 - 19:48:37 EST
Date: Sat, 24 Mar 2001 19:46:58 EST
Subject: Re: [b-greek] Long NT Greek sentances
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In a message dated 03/24/2001 10:49:15 AM Mountain Standard Time,
> Was it common for Ancient writers to make long sentances like Col 1:9-20 or
> Heb 1;1-4...ect????
> Is there any significant reason the author may have wanted to convey in
> doing such a long sentance?
> Michael R. Mysliwiec
Hebrews is packed with these sentences, which are often called 'periodic
sentences'. My personal NT favorites are Eph. 5:18-24 and Heb. 12:22-24.
I agree with much of what has been said. Long sentences create structural
cohesion over long stretches of information--which is extremely significant
in, say, the case of Eph. 5.
Long sentences support the finite verb clause, which marks it as the
prominent element in the information structure.
Sometimes long sentences with repeated grammatical patterns that build in
emphasis to the endpoint as I believe is the case in Heb. 12--quite beautiful.
I think that it is hard for us to appreciate the role of these sentences.
For us they function as a pain in the rear while we are trying to sort out
some strange and convuluted grammatical puzzle. However, there was little use
of punctuation or indentation in the formation of paragraphs. These
sentences were useful in creating structure, but necessitated skill to pull
University of Surrey at Roehampton
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