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Is μεγασ a determiner?

Posted: February 19th, 2017, 6:12 pm
by Alan Bunning
What do you make of the phrase “μεγαλη τη φωνη” in Acts 26:24? Here “μεγαλη” exists in the position of a determiner before the article, but it is not the type of word (at least in English) that is normally thought of as a determiner as it does not really fall into the category of a quantifier. In the New Testament, there is no other adjective that appears before the article like that unless it is a determiner (at least that I have found). And this is the only unambiguous place that “μεγασ” is used that way. So what is going on there?

Re: Is μεγασ a determiner?

Posted: February 19th, 2017, 7:10 pm
by MAubrey
Quantifiers appear before determiners.

Re: Is μεγασ a determiner?

Posted: February 19th, 2017, 8:00 pm
by Alan Bunning
MAubrey wrote:Quantifiers appear before determiners.
Perhaps what you are calling a quantifier is what I would call a quantitative determiner. But all other such quantifiers (at least in the New Testament) refer to an amount (quantities) – i.e. all, few, many, some, etc. “great” does not really fit that category of a quantity here since it refers to loudness, not an amount of voices.

Re: Is μεγασ a determiner?

Posted: February 21st, 2017, 8:21 pm
by Robert Emil Berge
Some adjectives can be used in the predicative position like this. Some of them get another meaning than when they are placed in an attributive position. Here is an example from Dickey's Composition and Analysis of Greek Prose: ἐν τῇ μέσῃ ὁδῷ = in the middle road, ἐν μέσῃ τῇ ὁδῷ = in the middle of the road. In other cases, like with μέγας, there is no obvious change of meaning.

Re: Is μεγασ a determiner?

Posted: February 22nd, 2017, 9:26 pm
by Barry Hofstetter
Alan Bunning wrote:What do you make of the phrase “μεγαλη τη φωνη” in Acts 26:24? Here “μεγαλη” exists in the position of a determiner before the article, but it is not the type of word (at least in English) that is normally thought of as a determiner as it does not really fall into the category of a quantifier. In the New Testament, there is no other adjective that appears before the article like that unless it is a determiner (at least that I have found). And this is the only unambiguous place that “μεγασ” is used that way. So what is going on there?
μεγάλῃ is in the predicate, and is fronted here for emphasis. The article here is simply generic, = "the type of voice which is great," or in better English, "a great voice."