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A syntactic point not found in Dickey

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A syntactic point not found in Dickey

Postby Hylander » Wed Aug 17, 2016 2:38 pm

Smyth, sec. 2631:

2631. In subordinate temporal and relative clauses the infinitive is often used for the indicative or optative by attraction to an infinitive standing in the principal clause after a verb of saying. In some cases ἔφη may be mentally inserted.

ἔφη . . . ἐπειδὴ δὲ γενέσθαι ἐπὶ τῇ οἰκίᾳ τῇ Ἀγάθωνος, ἀνεῳγμένην καταλαμβάνειν τὴν θύραν he said that, when he arrived at the house of Agathon, he found the door open P. S. 174d ( = ἐπειδὴ ἐγενόμην, καταλαμβάνω). See also the sentence quoted in 1228 b, end. So οὗτοι δὲ ἔλεγον ὅτι πολλοὺς φαίη Ἀριαῖος εἶναι Πέρσας ἑαυτοῦ βελτίους, οὓς οὐκ ἂν ἀνασχέσθαι αὐτοῦ βασιλεύοντος and they said that Ariaeus said that there were many Persians better than himself, who would not endure his being king X. A. 2.2.1 ( = πολλοί εἰσι ἐμαυτοῦ βελτίους, οἳ οὐκ. ἂν ἀνάσχοιντο ἐμοῦ β.). Here the relative is equivalent, in sense, to καὶ τούτους. The infinitive occurs even in clauses with εἰ (T. 4.98, and often in Hdt.), and with διότι (Hdt. 3.55).

a. The infinitive is rare in such relative clauses as ““διορίζουσι σαφῶς ἐν οἷς ἐξεῖναι ἀποκτιννύναι” they make a clear distinction in cases where it is permitted to kill” D. 23.74.


The first example from the Symposium occurs in the passage set for transformation into direct speech on p. 182 of Dickey (and further examples occur in this exercise), but she doesn't mention this point in her discussion of indirect discourse. I've seen this frequently in reading, and Paul will have seen this in Herodotus, but when I encountered it in doing the exercise, I had to go hunting in Smyth to confirm the analysis. She does recommend reading just about all of Smyth in the course of her book, and the above-quoted section is part of the recommended reading for Chapter XVIII, on oratio obliqua. So you're expected to be aware of this when you do the exercises. (I have to confess, though, that personally, I didn't read Smyth as diligently as she would have liked as I went through her book.)

See also Goodwin, Greek Grammar, sec. 1524.
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Re: A syntactic point not found in Dickey

Postby jeidsath » Wed Aug 17, 2016 6:05 pm

Sidgwick's on the same, section 38:

A special usage in the dependent clause of the oblique must be noticed, thoroughly idiomatic but rare.

In Thucydides, and still more frequently in Plato, we find, in reporting what somebody else said, that the accusative with the infinitive construction (which properly belongs only to the principal verb of the Oratio Obliqua), is extended, by a kind of attraction, even to the subordinate sentences.

This is a wonderful instance of the flexibility of the Greek language and syntax; and, as a matter of style, the usage is very effective in keeping well before the mind that what is being said is all reported from another.

[In English this instinct can only be satisfied by the clumsy device of changing the tense, as, ‘Mr. Brown observed, that when he came to the meeting he was not expecting to find the general sense there was of the,’ etc.: where one ‘was’=‘was,’ the other=‘is’: or else by constantly inserting ‘he said,’ as is common in colloquial English.]

ἔφασαν αὐτοὶ τοῦτο ἂν ἔχειν εἰ δυνηθῆναι κρατῆσαι.— THUC. [For ἐδυνήτησαν.]
‘They said they would themselves have had this privilege, had they been able to conquer.’

λέγεται ὅτε ἀλᾶσθαι αὐτὸν τὸν Ἀπόλλω χρῆσαι.— THUC. ii. 102. [For ἠλᾶτο].
‘It is said that when he was wandering Apollo prophesied.’

ἔφη, ἐπειδὴ οὗ ἐκβῆναι τὴν ψυχήν, πορεύεσθαι μετὰ πολλῶν.— PLATO, Reb. x. [For ἐξέβη ἡ ψυχή or ἐκβαίη.]
‘He said, that after his soul had gone out of him, he went away with a large company.’

ἀφικνεῖσθαι ἔφη εἰσ τόπον ἐν ᾧ δύ’ εἶναι χάσματε.— PLATO, Rep. x. [For ἐστὶν or εἴη.]
‘He said he came to a place where there were two gulfs’

πείσειν γὰρ αὐτὸν Ἀθηναίους, ὧσπερ καὶ νῦν ἀντιλέγειν.— THUC. V. 44. [For ἀντιλέγει or ἀντιλέγοι.]
‘For (he said) he would persuade the Athenians, just as he was now speaking against it.


Recently I read through all of Sidgwick's greek syntax examples a couple of times, and made sure that I understood the meaning and the point that he was making. I will probably repeat this with Kaegi (and likely review the Sidgwick examples again). It has made a great difference in my Greek, without too much effort.
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

μὴ δ’ οὕτως ἀγαθός περ ἐὼν θεοείκελ’ Ἀχιλλεῦ
κλέπτε νόῳ, ἐπεὶ οὐ παρελεύσεαι οὐδέ με πείσεις.
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Re: A syntactic point not found in Dickey

Postby mwh » Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:44 pm

I think of it as typically Attic, like relative attraction at its more extreme end. Strange that Sidgwick calls it rare.
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Re: A syntactic point not found in Dickey

Postby Hylander » Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:16 am

It's typically Attic, and I don't think it's rare, either, but it's also quite common in Herodotus. I think Dickey should have mentioned it, since, as I noted, it figures in the passage from the Symposium that she sets for conversion to direct discourse. Anyone who wants to master indirect discourse in Greek should read the Symposium--the narrative is entirely in indirect discourse but the speeches are in direct discourse.

I'm very pleased with Dickey's book now that I worked through all of it (except the passages at the end set for translation from indirect to direct discourse and vice versa, which I haven't finished yet). My one major criticism is that she doesn't provide many extended exercises requiring use of connectives--mainly just a few sentences calling for γαρ, ουν, δε and αλλα. Also, there isn't much guidance on word order.
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