pster wrote:Smyth 911:
A predicate substantive or adjective may often be distinguished from an attributive ( cross912) in that the former implies some form of εἶναι be.
Putting these together, how does ταῦτα εἰπὼν ἀπῄειν or ὁρῶ σε κρύπτοντα "impl[y] some form of εἶναι be"?
pster wrote:"Often" applies to the distinguishing from attributive not to the presence of εἶναι.
spiphany wrote:Just so we're clear, Smyth 1150 is talking about a situation where you have two nouns, not a noun (or pronoun) & an adj. So it's not immediately relevant for the issue we were discussing (determining whether an adjective is predicative or attributive). But it's relevant in a larger way to the general problem of how we decide what makes a word "predicative" or "attributive".
But what if you have no article at all -- ἀνὴρ ἀγαθός or ἀγαθός ἀνὴρ? This sort of thing happens sometimes, even in prose, and more often in drama or poetry.
Right. And what if you have two nouns, neither of which has an article, or both of which have an article?
This is part of what I was getting at with my comment that I'm not sure looking for rigid distinctions is terribly useful.
Yes, in the end you can usually look at a sentence and explain why a particular usage is attributive or predicative, and how it affects the meaning. But it really is about meaning, about language as something used to communicate ideas, not as a code which can be deciphered by checking off a list of rules and paragraph numbers.
spiphany wrote:I'm not saying that this is is what you're doing. But one problem with Smyth -- as useful as his grammar is for a ton of things -- is that his approach seems to encourage this sort of attitude. It's not his fault, it's simply the way linguistics was done in his day.
And there are limits to it. I think you're running up against those, and I guess I was trying to say that I'm not sure it's worth breaking your head over, that going in circles from one cross-reference to another in Smyth isn't likely to lead to enlightenment. It's great for working out the mechanics of Greek, but in the end it can't tell you why a particular author chose to express something the way he did.
However -- I'm not really a classicist, but rather a literary scholar. As much as I enjoy talking about the finer points of Greek grammar, you're not going to find me publishing an edition of Plato, ever. So it's possible there are aspects to this discussion which are relevant to someone working in a traditional textual criticism/philological framework, but which I'm missing because these issues are simply not important to me.
BTW there's a short review of Stéphanie J. Bakker's The Noun Phrase in Ancient Greek here: http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/2010/2010-05-17.html
I haven't read the book, but the review summarizes the author's points fairly well -- she's working within the framework of modern discourse linguistics, so the theoretical background is quite different than someone like Smyth. I don't know if you'll find the review helpful, but obviously I'm sympathetic to the author's approach of looking at meaning in context rather than abstract rules.
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