jeidsath wrote: ↑
Sun Nov 18, 2018 7:46 pm
For προς as “in consequence of” see LSJ C.III.2.
One of the pitfalls in using a dictionary such as LSJ for prepositions stems from the different idioms (character, habitual usage) of the the two languages. Greek more commonly uses prepositions to convey real meaning, while English tends to confine itself to using prepositions to designate the relationship between sentence elements. To put that in another way, in the case of English its prepostions are more grammatical, while for Greek its prepositions are more (lexico-)semantic. Of course on a scale of vagueness to specificity, where a low value indicates vagueness, the semantic specificity value of a preposition within its phrase in Greek rates low.
The two dictionaries I commonly work with - LSJ and BDAG - are not very helpful in this regard, seeing as they gloss Greek prepositions with English prepositions. Due, however, to the difference in usage patterns and proportions of prepositions between the languages, always rendering a preposition by a preposition creates unidiomatic English.
I have entitled this thread and posed my question within the conventions of the currently assumed and promoted equivalency in usage of parts of speech assumptions just to make it "understandable", but actually I would prefer to go further into the interaction of the two idioms that happens in translation, but then I'd be losing the I've-no-idea-what-you're-talking-about people. Transforming the idiom for πρὸς in ἐξεκάοντο πρὸς τὰ ἀκούσματα for example, we could say that in English the rather complex meaning expressed by the Greek preposition would prehaps more naturally (idiomatically) be expressed by a verb or verbal phrase - I suggest it coukd be, "when they heard".
As I've alluded to in other threads, to help me think about the verbal value of prepositions, I use a scale of three values, prepositions with specific verbs (where the preposition acts upon or modifies the meaning of simple verb), preposition with what I call carrier verbs (perhaps a name more understandable to others might be grammaticising verbs - verbs which are there because of the grammatical needs of the Greek language) and finally zero verbs (just prepositions in Greek, which would probably be rendered as verbs in English by explicating what is understood from the context in the Greek). Rendering ἐξεκάοντο πρὸς τὰ ἀκούσματα as, "when they heard", for example, takes the understood verb of hearing and spells it out.
Lexicon entries based on the equivalent usage of parts of speech assumption tend to be torturously long, often with complex prepositions in place of simple Greek ones. Glossing prepositions verbally for the sake of a bilingual dictionary might look like, πρὸς (with a noun of what is heard) "hearing".
To summarise all that, in this regard, English tends to explicitly state what Greek implies.