[b-greek] Fronting

From: c stirling bartholomew (cc.constantine@worldnet.att.net)
Date: Tue Oct 16 2001 - 13:21:26 EDT

on 10/16/01 1:45 AM in another thread RE: Jn.3:15,16 PISTEUW EN

 Iver Larsen wrote:

> It is
> also important to note the semantic strength of the verb. The copula ESTIN
> usually comes very late in the sentence - if it occurs at all - because it
> is inherently without much semantic content. If it is used as a verb of
> existence or is stressed it may well come first in the clause.


I read your last post and Alex Hopkins' (RE: Jn.3:15,16 PISTEUW EN) with
great interest. Now I would like to address "fronting" as a isolated topic.

My problem with "fronting" is that every time I pick up the GNT counter
examples start leaping off the pages. This morning it was 2Pt 2:1:


Here we have clause initial EGENONTO which has low semantic content just
like ESTIN. But in narrative EGENONTO is very often toward the front of the
clause. This has something (what?) to do with narrative discourse patterns
but I don't think it has anything to do with the level of semantic content
(a completely different issue than relative prominence).

Now note the position of EN TWi LAWi relative to the verb and contrast it to
the position of EN hUMIN relative to ESONTAI. Are we to conclude from this
that EN hUMIN is more prominent than EN TWi LAWi? This is possible but I
have lingering doubts. I think that Peter's administrative assistant is just
pulling a little semi chaisim here.

Finally what is the one word in this verse with the most significant
semantic content and also the most discourse prominence? The word is
YEUDODIDASKALOI. What is its position? Dead last.

Thanks for all the discussion.

Friendly greetings to everyone,


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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