[b-greek] Re: Questions about questions

From: Paul Schmehl (p.l.schmehl@worldnet.att.net)
Date: Mon Jun 11 2001 - 22:11:20 EDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Keith Thompson" <keitht@kneptune.demon.co.uk>
To: "Biblical Greek" <b-greek@franklin.oit.unc.edu>
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2001 11:27 AM
Subject: [b-greek] Questions about questions

> Hi!
> After reading the recent messages written in Greek, I thought it would
> be a good idea to practice writing in Greek. (By the way what does

Off the top of my head, I would say, "I film", (as in cinematography.)

 But I came across a problem that sometimes occurs
> when reading Greek without punctuation. How would I ask a question in
> Greek which is clearly a question and not a statement? Obviously certain
> words imply a question is being asked: TIS, POU, etc. But sometimes
> there seems to be no indication (even in context) that something is a
> question and not a statement.
> In English the word order usually takes away this problem, e.g. 'is the
> sun yellow' is clearly a question, and 'the sun is yellow' is probably a
> statement. Likewise 'is not the sun yellow' is a question and 'the sun
> is not yellow' is likely a statement..

This isn't always true. I can say, "Is the sun yellow?", and you can
respond, "The sun is yellow?". Without the punctuation, you would probably
assume that the response is a statement rather than a question. Only the
punctuation clarifies that the response is a question also. Likewise, I
could say, "Who will go with me?", and you know it's a question because of
the word "who". I could also say, "With me, who will go?", and the who
still tips us off that it's a question.

Reminds me of a joke I heard recently. Two girls were riding on a train.
One, who was from Texas, looked at the other and asked inquisitively, "Where
y'all from?"

The other girl responded, "Where I come from we know better than to end a
sentence with a preposition."

To which the girl from Texas responded, "Where y'all from, jerk?"

Paul Schmehl pauls@utdallas.edu

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