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odd combination of genitive and accusative

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odd combination of genitive and accusative

Postby daivid » Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:33 pm

Just as I was sure that I at last fully understood Anabasis 1:4,7 another little detail has turned round and bit me.
Okay the two pissed off Greek leaders have just embarked on a ship and they...
καὶ τὰ πλείστου ἄξια ἐνθέμενοι

It means "and they placing the most valuble of (their) things" but why is it
πλείστου which is in the genitive. Something like this would be closer to what I'd expect:
καὶ τὰ πλείστα τῶν ἄξια ἐνθέμενοι

 
Xenophon, Anabasis 1:4,7 wrote:
καὶ Ξενίας ὁ Ἀρκὰς στρατηγὸς καὶ Πασίων ὁ Μεγαρεὺς ἐμβάντες εἰς πλοῖον καὶ τὰ πλείστου ἄξια ἐνθέμενοι ἀπέπλευσαν, ὡς μὲν τοῖς πλείστοις ἐδόκουν φιλοτιμηθέντες ὅτι τοὺς στρατιώτας αὐτῶν τοὺς παρὰ Κλέαρχον ἀπελθόντας ὡς ἀπιόντας εἰς τὴν Ἑλλάδα πάλιν καὶ οὐ πρὸς βασιλέα εἴα Κῦρος τὸν Κλέαρχον ἔχειν.
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Re: odd combination of genitive and accusative

Postby Victor » Sat Sep 28, 2013 12:32 am

καὶ τὰ πλείστου ἄξια ἐνθέμενοι is perfectly regular Greek. The genitive πλείστου is dependent on the neuter accusative τὰ ἄξια, τὰ πλείστου ἄξια being literally "things worthy of the most". The same construction has occurred already in Anabasis 1, III, 12: πολλοῦ ἄξιος: "worthy of much".
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Re: odd combination of genitive and accusative

Postby daivid » Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:54 pm

Victor wrote:καὶ τὰ πλείστου ἄξια ἐνθέμενοι is perfectly regular Greek. The genitive πλείστου is dependent on the neuter accusative τὰ ἄξια, τὰ πλείστου ἄξια being literally "things worthy of the most". The same construction has occurred already in Anabasis 1, III, 12: πολλοῦ ἄξιος: "worthy of much".


Thanks very much for the explanation and especially the other example which has helped me get a better feel for the construction.

Is this specific to ἄξιος or can it work for other adjectives as a sort of alternative comparative?
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Re: odd combination of genitive and accusative

Postby Victor » Sat Sep 28, 2013 4:35 pm

daivid wrote:Is this specific to ἄξιος or can it work for other adjectives as a sort of alternative comparative?

I'm not sure I understand why you describe it as an alternative comparative. Can you explain? The genitive depending on ἄξιος is usually thought of as a genitive of price or value.
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Re: odd combination of genitive and accusative

Postby daivid » Sat Sep 28, 2013 5:44 pm

Victor wrote:I'm not sure I understand why you describe it as an alternative comparative. Can you explain? The genitive depending on ἄξιος is usually thought of as a genitive of price or value.

Now it becomes completely clear, thanks.
Price or Value: Denotes the price or value of an object Smyth 1336-1337
“χιλίων δραχμῶν δίκην φεύγω” Dem. 55.25; I am defendant in an action involving a thousand drachma
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