[b-greek] Re: Gal. 3:24

From: Michael Haggett (michaelhaggett@lineone.net)
Date: Sun May 13 2001 - 08:07:04 EDT

In response to my:
> but my initial rule of thumb would be to assume that different
> constructions and phraseologies are used to convey things in DIFFERENT

c stirling bartholomew wrote (May 13)

>Without getting embroiled in the details of this discussion lets just take
look at your "rule of thumb." Polysemy cuts both ways. The relationship
between a constituent like 'hINA + subjunctive' and a set of semantic
functions is a one-to-many network. Polysemy cuts the other way just as
often, where several dissimilar constituents map to the same semantic
function, a many-to-one network. Thus, the architecture of the semantic
system is a complex network. Based on this I would say that your "rule of
thumb" has dubious merit.

>There are several other assumptions being made here about the relationship
between form and function which could be called into question but at this
point it is probably prudent to let that pass and just emphasize that
polysemy cuts both ways.


Clay, I have to say that I find it hard to understand your terminology, so I
might have misunderstood your point. But to "cut" through it, I can't see
anything for us to disagree about ... except perhaps the "just as often",
for I think different words mean different things far more often than the
same thing.

I think you might have misunderstood what I meant by "rule of thumb". I mean
an initial working assumption which then needs to be tested in any
particular situation before reaching a conclusion.

I think it is better to assume (at first) that different words convey
different meanings (or shades of meaning) than to assume that they mean the
same thing. This is for two reasons:

1. It is more likely to be true.

2. If you take the first approach, you may well eventually come to a
different conclusion in a particular situation, but at least you'll have
examined the question. If you take the second, you don't need to think at

Michael Haggett

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