From: Carl W. Conrad (email@example.com)
Date: Mon May 28 2001 - 09:34:51 EDT
At 6:52 PM +0200 5/22/01, J.L.H. Krans wrote:
>Reading Erasmus's Annotations on the New Testament, I came across an
>interesting emendation he proposes on the word POLU in Rom 3:2: "... it
>appears that POLLH should be read, ... to modify ("ut sit epitheton") ...
>WFELEIA." My question is not text-critical, though, but grammatical:
>What connection does POLU have, grammatically, with the preceding question
>(vs. 1)? Does it concord with TO PERISSON, and is that the only option? In
>other words: does Erasmus have a point here, in that POLU, obviously refering
>to WFELEIA too, is a bit strange?
It looks like nobody has taken this on and it's been almost a week.
Text: Rom 3:1 TI OUN TO PERISSON TOU IOUDAIOU H TIS hH WFELEIA THS
PERITOMHS? 2 POLU KATA PANTA TROPON. PRWTON MEN [GAR] hOTI EPISTEUQHSAN TA
LOGIA TOU QEOU.
I can see a degree of plausibility to reading POLLH in 3:2 and
understanding it as referring back to hH WFELEIA. On the other hand,
however, it seems to me that verse 1 doesn't so much ask two questions as
it present the same question in two equivalent formulations. I might
loosely convert: "So what's the special advantage of the Jew or what good
is circumcision" and understand this to mean generically and specifically:
"what good is Jewish ethnicity and its outward manifestation?" Now it seems
to me that the formulation of 3:2 at the outset follows more closely the
structure/pattern of the first rhetorical question of 3:1, so that the
response is "a lot/considerable in every way." So I would find it easier to
understand POLU with the subject of the first clause of 3:1, TO PERISSON
TOU IOUDAIOU, although changing it to POLLH and making it refer to WFELEIA
is certainly not implausible. What makes it somewhat more plausible is that
POLU and POLLH were evidently pronounced identically.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649
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