From: Carl W. Conrad (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu Nov 29 2001 - 13:53:23 EST
At 11:56 PM +0100 11/28/01, Iver Larsen wrote:
>> I'm not sure yet, however, about the other alternatives.
>> Mt 2:6, 11:23 (par Lk 10:15 have phrasing beginning with SU addressed to a
>> city, followed by an appositional phrase (KAI SU BHQLEEM, GH
>> IOUDA ...; KAI
>> SU KAFARNAOUM, ...). Lk 1:76 has KAI SU DE, PAIDION, ... I rather suspect
>> that in all of these the SU is really the subject of the verb that appears
>> I suspect that's also the case with SU in Acts 1:24 SU KURIE KARDIOGNWSTE
>> PANTWN, ANADEIXON hON ELELEXW EK TOUTWN TWN DUO hENA. That is, I'd prefer
>> to punctuate this as SU, KURIE KARDIOGNWSTE PANTWN and understand
>> SU as the
>> emphatic subject of the imperative ANADEIXON.
>All of these forms of SU were marked in the Friberg database as nominative
>which supports your suggestion of taking them as subject for the verb rather
>than part of a vocative phrase. That, of course, is an interpretation. How
>does Accordance tag them? In the NT database I am using there are 640 nouns
>marked as vocative, but not a single pronoun.
Right, I think this is standard; all forms of SU are marked as nominative
in Accordance also, although clearly some must be understood as vocative (I
guess the grammars say "nominative for vocative."
>> Finally there's the interesting word-order of the High-Priestly prayer in
>> John 17:5 KAI NUN DOXASON ME SU, PATER, PARA SEAUTWi ... Here SU (in FINAL
>> position in its clause!) is the emphatic subject of the
>> imperative DOXASON,
>> but is followed immediately by the vocative PATER. Another factor here, of
>> course, is the juxtaposition of personal pronouns (ME SU).
>I fail to see how the SU can be termed emphatic. In terms of relative
>prominence, the NUN is prominent as it contrasts the statement in the
>preceding sentence about Jesus having glorified God on earth up to this
>point in time. *Now* it is up to God to glorify Jesus. The second prominent
>word is glorify, since this is the recurrent theme of these verses. The way
>I see it, the ME and SU come later in the sentence, because the other two
>words, NUN and DOXASON, are relatively more prominent.
I'm looking at the same text as you, Iver, and I just simply understand it
differently. (4) EGW SE EDOXASA EPI THS GHS TO ERGON TELEIWSAS hO DEDWKAS
MOI hINA POIHSW; (5) KAI NUN DOXASON ME SU, PATER, PARA SEAUTWi ... I
honestly see a powerful antithesis here: "I HAVE glorified YOU ... now YOU
glorify ME. I'd even be inclined to say there's something of a chiasmus
here in EGW SE EDOXASA at the beginning of (4) and DOXASON ME SU in (5). I
honestly do think that this SU in (5) is emphatic. But then, I've never
bought into your conception that fronting alone is this language's
distinctive way of indicating emphasis.
>I find it logically impossible, or at least highly improbably, that a
>language with such flexible word order as Greek can mark prominence both by
>fronting and the opposite (do you call it backing?) I have read Levinsohn's
>treatment of what he calls end of sentence focus, but I find alternative
>analyses to his examples more convincing.
I haven't read it, but I suspect that there are others too who would hold a
theory of "end of sentence focus"--it is certainly characteristic of Latin
(contemporary with the NT Koine Greek) to use both initial and final
positions in the clause for emphasis, and Latin is no less flexible a
language than Greek.
>In a certain sense the fact that SU occurs at all can be said to make it
>emphatic, since it is strictly speaking not needed. I am wondering whether
>there is Semitic influence here. There seems to be an abundance of personal
>pronouns in this section.
True enough, but after all, this is a prayer in which Jesus is addressing
the Father and talking as much about the personal interrelationship between
the two as well as the interrelationship of both with believers--so the
frequency of these personal pronouns, EGW and SU should not be surprising.
>We may not reach a clear verdict as Carl says, but it is still interesting
>to investigate the options and the relative weight of various arguments in
>order to get a feel for the direction the scale might be tipping. In this
>case, it makes little difference to the meaning.
>CEV translated it "Don't be foolish" which is similar in intent to "You are
>NLT says: "What a foolish question!" That is more polite that saying "You
>fool!" After all, it was Paul himself who framed the hypothetical question
>in order to make his point.
Well, there are such passages as Gal 5:12, OFELON KAI APOKOYONTAI hOI
ANASTATOUNTES hUMAS where KJV has " I would that they that unsettle you
would even go beyond circumcision." and only NET translates "a spade as a
spade": "I wish those agitators would go so far as to castrate themselves!"
Curious that the paraphrases want to steer clear of the offensive
language--as did even the translators of the KJV.
I do indeed think the arguments on behalf of alternative understandings of
the text need to be examined carefully, and I do think that more often than
not the preponderance is clear. Nevertheless, I've seen quite enough
instances where persons whose scholarship I respect very much have judged
the evidence differently. It is a great problem for a translator certainly;
personally I think that where there's no clear consensus, the serious
alternatives need all to be set forth; not even a majority vote of a
committee can make anything more than a political decision. As a famous
document in my own denomination tradition put it back in the 18th century,
"God alone is Lord of the conscience."
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University (Emeritus)
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649
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