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ὅτι or ὅ τι?

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ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 4:46 pm

I did a little search and it seems like the editor of Polybius never uses ὅ τι to distinguish it from ὅτι.

GENERAL QUESTIONS:

How do we know when we are faced with that? It seems like there has to be indirect speech or a superlative (where ὅτι indicates "as possible"). And so any other occurrence has to be the indefinite relative ὅ τι. Is that correct?

SPECIFIC QUESTIONS:

Are both of the following occurrences both indefinite relatives? I assume they are.

Plb. 6.2:

ὅτι τὸ ψυχαγωγοῦν ἅμα καὶ τὴν ὠφέλειαν ἐπιφέρον τοῖς φιλομαθοῦσι τοῦτ᾽ ἔστιν ἡ τῶν αἰτιῶν θεωρία καὶ τοῦ βελτίονος ἐν ἑκάστοις αἵρεσις.

Whatever brings the atttraction and the use to the curious is this, the theory of causes and choice of the better in each case.

But why is this indefinite? Why not use a regular relative pronoun?

Plb. 6.4:

ὅτι δ᾽ ἀληθές ἐστι τὸ λεγόμενον ἐκ τούτων συμφανές.

One translator gives: I will illustrate the truth of what I say.

Here we don't have a demonstrative. So what is the antecedent for the relative pronoun?

In neither of these cases can I clearly distinguish the main clause from the relative clause. And in neither of these cases do I understand why the indefinite relatives are used.

Can anybody shed some light?

Thanks in advance.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 7:13 pm

OK, I looked around, and I now assume that these are both the conjunction ὅτι and not the indirect relative. What confused me is that when we say in English, "That he won the competition is great", this use of "That" is also for a dependent clause. Is that true? The way the grammar books jump to talking about indirect discourse and ὅτι is rather misleading because you don't need any indirect discourse to employ ὅτι with a dependent clause. And the way the grammar books say that it also gets used with impersonal expressions also is misleading because that makes it sound like there is some relatively small list of such expressions. In fact, the Greek is just like the English. We can say "That p is adj." for any adj.

And assuming that is so, then it still seems we need another copula in the second example, ie that it is implicit. What do you think?
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 7:30 pm

But I can't find any place where Smyth discusses sentences like "That he won the competition is great".
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby spiphany » Sat Jan 12, 2013 7:51 pm

pster wrote:But I can't find any place where Smyth discusses sentences like "That he won the competition is great".

Non-referenced, gut response: I think this construction is a feature of English syntax but not necessarily of Greek (look up cleft sentences, I'm not sure if this is exactly what it is, but it's a similar phenomenon in any case). In Greek I would expect an articular infinitive or participle construction or something (him having won the competition is great). Not 100% sure of this, and I'll see if I can find examples if I have a chance, but Smyth is still on the other side of the Atlantic, so no promises.
IPHIGENIE: Kann uns zum Vaterland die Fremde werden?
ARKAS: Und dir ist fremd das Vaterland geworden.
IPHIGENIE: Das ist's, warum mein blutend Herz nicht heilt.
(Goethe, Iphigenie auf Tauris)
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jan 12, 2013 7:56 pm

I think in sentences with dependent clauses the copula is often omitted/implied,
but in something like this where the order is reversed (not a common feature of Greek
according to spiphany above) as well as the need for another copula inside the dependent
clause - "[that x is y] is [z]"- , the first copula is explicit.

But like you said, we need evidence from Smyth or another grammar book for such a
sweeping statement.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 8:42 pm

Thanks spiphany and Nate. So where do you guys come down?

1) Are these both ὅτι? Or is either of them ὅ τι?

2) Why does the first one have a demonstrative, but not the second one?

3) Nate, I don't follow. What do you mean by "first"? You mean independent?

4) How different are they?

--------------------------------

One might be inclined to read the first in light of Smyth 2577:

ὅτι τὸ ψυχαγωγοῦν ἅμα καὶ τὴν ὠφέλειαν ἐπιφέρον τοῖς φιλομαθοῦσι τοῦτ᾽ ἔστιν ἡ τῶν αἰτιῶν θεωρία καὶ τοῦ βελτίονος ἐν ἑκάστοις αἵρεσις.

So, as per Smyth 2577, ὅτι presents a clause that explains τοῦτ᾽. But that doesn't seem to really work.

Sometimes I think that ὅτι is ὅ τι but not the indefinite relative, but rather the indirect interrogative.

What brings the attraction and at the same time the use to the curious is this, the theory of causes and choice of the better in each case.

But wouldn't we need a feminine demonstrative and a plural one? And can we go down this road anyway?
---------------------

The second one I am more inclined to see as ὅτι conjunction with a omitted copula.

That the thing said [previously] is true is clear from these things [that follow].


HELP!
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:05 pm

pster wrote:Thanks spiphany and Nate. So where do you guys come down?

1) Are these both ὅτι? Or is either of them ὅ τι?

2) Why does the first one have a demonstrative, but not the second one?

3) Nate, I don't follow. What do you mean by "first"? You mean independent?

4) How different are they?

I see them both as ὅτι and the first one as an example of Smyth 2577.
Regarding the neut. for fem., there is a Smyth section about this but I don't remember the number.
The gist of it was that it is common to use the neut. in explanatory statements like this.

By first copula I meant the one in the dependent clause [that x is y] is [z].
You can say ἐκ τούτων συμφανές (ἐστι) τὸ λεγόμενον ἀληθές εἶναι*. Perhaps you'll find examples
where both copulas are implicit.

* corrected.
Last edited by NateD26 on Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:13 pm

OK, good. I understand. Do you have any Smyth number for the second one then? I can't find any place in Mastronarde, Smyth or Sidgwick where a ὅτι clause can be the subject.

---------------------------------------------

Perhaps it is not a fair question because Polybius is more Koine than Attic. ~150BC.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:29 pm

Just a correction to my above post. I've mistakenly written the copula ἐστίν for the infinitive εἶναι:
ἐκ τούτων συμφανές (ἐστι) τὸ λεγόμενον ἀληθές εἶναι.

If it were with ὅτι, as is the case in Ploybius, then we would have a second copula:
ἐκ τούτων συμφανές (ἐστιν) ὅτι τὸ λεγόμενον ἀληθές ἐστιν.

(I reckon this would make my previous post more confusing than enlightening in any way. :oops: )

I will have more time tomorrow to check in Smyth.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby pster » Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:45 pm

See section 70 of page 230 here:

http://archive.org/stream/GrammarOfNewT ... 3/mode/2up

He makes it sound like a lot of the oti's that one encounters in indirect speech in Attic are really o,it! In other words that a lot of what one might think are indirect statements are indirect questions.

See the bottom of page 235 here:

http://archive.org/stream/agrammarnewte ... 9/mode/1up

He has the English "That man is mortal is certain" but doesn't pull the trigger on the Greek.

I'll have to pull out the Chantraine tomorrow. I have no idea what is going on.
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Re: ὅτι or ὅ τι?

Postby spiphany » Tue Jan 15, 2013 6:20 pm

pster wrote:Thanks spiphany and Nate. So where do you guys come down? Are these both ὅτι? Or is either of them ὅ τι?

Sorry, I think my post was unclear. I don't have any particular insight into ὅτι versus ὅ τι, perhaps because I've seen the process of relatives turning into conjunctions often enough in various languages that I sort of figure it's a fluid distinction anyway.

I was responding to the English example you gave -- "That he won the competition is great" -- and expressing my (gut) reaction that Greek wouldn't use ὅτι (or ὅ τι) at all, but some kind of substantivized verb form (infinitive or participle phrase) instead. As I said, I can't back it up, so make of it what you will.
IPHIGENIE: Kann uns zum Vaterland die Fremde werden?
ARKAS: Und dir ist fremd das Vaterland geworden.
IPHIGENIE: Das ist's, warum mein blutend Herz nicht heilt.
(Goethe, Iphigenie auf Tauris)
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