Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

MAubrey
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by MAubrey » July 28th, 2011, 7:35 pm

Vasileios Tsialas wrote:It is a logical tendency in the Greek language, not an absolute rule. It cannot be an absolute rule when it has exceptions, when it is so complicated in order to avoid (unsuccessfully) exceptions; it cannot be an absolute rule in a developing lingua franca spoken mostly by multinational groups, and when it overlooks overwhelming historical data in the case of theology.
On the contrary, I would suggest the exact opposite. To quote Wallace:
Wallace, page 58f. wrote:"The first really substantial response to Sharp's work was by Christopher Wordsworth, at the time a Fellow of Trinity College in Cambridge, who wrote Six Letters to Granville Sharp, Esq.,, published anonymously in 1802. His interest was piqued by Sharp's canon, though he admitted at the outset of his investigation a great deal of skepticism, even incredulity, over its validity.

...

To test Sharp's principle, Wordsworth went to patristic literature. He felt that if the principle were valid, then certainly the Greek fathers would have understood the christologically significant texts in the same way that Sharp had. Further, he believed that the Latin fathers, on the assumption of the rules validity, would not have uniformly understood the same texts as referring to one person since there is no definite article in Latin, rendering their translations more obscure. On the other hand, if Sharp's rule were a figment of his own imagination, then the Greek fathers, as well as Latin, would not be uniform in their understanding.

...

[T]he Greek patristic writers not only implicitly knew of the requirements of Sharp's canon, but understoodood them better than Sharp did himself!

...

What caused Wordsworth to alter his course, to so unswervingly embrace Sharp's principle? In a word, evidence. After an exhaustive investigation, from Greek Christian literature covering a span of over 1000 years Wordsworth was able to make the astounding comment,

"...I have observed more (I am persuaded) than a thousand instances of the form ὁ Χριστος και Θεος (Ephes, v. 5)[,] some hundreds of instances of the ὁ μεγας θεος και σωτηρ (Tit. ii. 13); and not fewer than several thousand of the form ὁ θεος και σωτηρ (2 Pet. i. 1.)[,] while in no single case, have I seen (where the sense could be determined) any of them used, but only of one person.
I would encourage you to read Wallace. It's supposed complications are *naturally* derived from the nature of semantics and the nature of language. Wallace also demonstrates quite clearly that the distractions of theology have tended to arise more from those who reject it than those who accept it (e.g. Georg Benedik Winer).
Mike Aubrey, Linguist
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David Lim
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by David Lim » July 28th, 2011, 9:08 pm

MAubrey wrote:
Vasileios Tsialas wrote:It is a logical tendency in the Greek language, not an absolute rule. It cannot be an absolute rule when it has exceptions, when it is so complicated in order to avoid (unsuccessfully) exceptions; it cannot be an absolute rule in a developing lingua franca spoken mostly by multinational groups, and when it overlooks overwhelming historical data in the case of theology.
On the contrary, I would suggest the exact opposite. To quote Wallace:
Wallace, page 58f. wrote:"The first really substantial response to Sharp's work was by Christopher Wordsworth, at the time a Fellow of Trinity College in Cambridge, who wrote Six Letters to Granville Sharp, Esq.,, published anonymously in 1802. His interest was piqued by Sharp's canon, though he admitted at the outset of his investigation a great deal of skepticism, even incredulity, over its validity.

...

To test Sharp's principle, Wordsworth went to patristic literature. He felt that if the principle were valid, then certainly the Greek fathers would have understood the christologically significant texts in the same way that Sharp had. Further, he believed that the Latin fathers, on the assumption of the rules validity, would not have uniformly understood the same texts as referring to one person since there is no definite article in Latin, rendering their translations more obscure. On the other hand, if Sharp's rule were a figment of his own imagination, then the Greek fathers, as well as Latin, would not be uniform in their understanding.

...

[T]he Greek patristic writers not only implicitly knew of the requirements of Sharp's canon, but understoodood them better than Sharp did himself!

...

What caused Wordsworth to alter his course, to so unswervingly embrace Sharp's principle? In a word, evidence. After an exhaustive investigation, from Greek Christian literature covering a span of over 1000 years Wordsworth was able to make the astounding comment,

"...I have observed more (I am persuaded) than a thousand instances of the form ὁ Χριστος και Θεος (Ephes, v. 5)[,] some hundreds of instances of the ὁ μεγας θεος και σωτηρ (Tit. ii. 13); and not fewer than several thousand of the form ὁ θεος και σωτηρ (2 Pet. i. 1.)[,] while in no single case, have I seen (where the sense could be determined) any of them used, but only of one person.
I would encourage you to read Wallace. It's supposed complications are *naturally* derived from the nature of semantics and the nature of language. Wallace also demonstrates quite clearly that the distractions of theology have tended to arise more from those who reject it than those who accept it (e.g. Georg Benedik Winer).
It would be interesting if you can provide some examples of this kind of construction where the sense could be determined, especially in non-Christian texts or texts before AD300, do you mind? :)
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MAubrey
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by MAubrey » August 1st, 2011, 4:54 pm

If I had time, I would, but currently, I'm trying to get in extra hours of work before I head out on vacation for the month of August and when I get back, the semester will be starting up again.

It would be easier to simply get Wallace's book via interlibrary loan--or better in terms of price, go onto Google books and find Middlton's The Doctrine of the Greek Article
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Vasileios Tsialas
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by Vasileios Tsialas » August 2nd, 2011, 2:43 pm

Dear MAubrey,

I agree that I must also read Wallace’ book to have a better view of the linguistic subject.

I would be very interested to see how Wallace deals with cases as the ones below:

σαφῶς τὰ δύο πρόσωπα ἐπέδειξεν͵ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ υἱοῦ.—Hippolytus, De benedictionibus Isaaci et Jacobi 76.4.
τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ υἱοῦ οὐσίαν.—Gregory Nyssenus, Contra Eunomium 4,8.

(and other 33 such occurrences with του πατρός και υιού in TLG [1st-5th centuries] C.E.)

Or:
κατὰ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρὸς ἡμῶν͵ καὶ Κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ μονογενοῦς αὐτοῦ Υἱοῦ.—Pseudo-Basilius,Oratio pro inimicis et amicis 30,828.

Or:
ληφθέντων αἰχμαλώτων αὐτοῦ τῆς μητρὸς καὶ γυναικὸς καὶ τῶν τέκνων ἔφυγεν.—Josephus, Antiquitates Judaicae 11,316.

As regards the historical evidence, it is impossible for me to consider that Paul and Peter where a kind of proto-Sabellians, identifying Christ with the Almighty God, and I think that I am in accordance with the mainstream scholarship of Patrology.

Beyond that, which can be easily proven, I think that Peter’s phraseology shows his word economy:

A ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ τοῦ θεοῦ ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
B ἐν ἐπιγνώσει τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν.

If B, which is in the text exactly after A, speaks of two persons, I don’t see why A cannot do the same. And I don’t believe that Peter was anxious enough to open a grammar book in order to check if his constructions comply with all the aspects of Sharp’s rule.
Vasileios Tsialas

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Paul Rittman
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by Paul Rittman » August 2nd, 2011, 4:55 pm

Vasileios Tsialas wrote:Dear MAubrey,

I agree that I must also read Wallace’ book to have a better view of the linguistic subject.

I would be very interested to see how Wallace deals with cases as the ones below:

σαφῶς τὰ δύο πρόσωπα ἐπέδειξεν͵ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ υἱοῦ.—Hippolytus, De benedictionibus Isaaci et Jacobi 76.4.
τὴν τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ υἱοῦ οὐσίαν.—Gregory Nyssenus, Contra Eunomium 4,8.

(and other 33 such occurrences with του πατρός και υιού in TLG [1st-5th centuries] C.E.)

Or:
κατὰ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρὸς ἡμῶν͵ καὶ Κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ μονογενοῦς αὐτοῦ Υἱοῦ.—Pseudo-Basilius,Oratio pro inimicis et amicis 30,828.

Or:
ληφθέντων αἰχμαλώτων αὐτοῦ τῆς μητρὸς καὶ γυναικὸς καὶ τῶν τέκνων ἔφυγεν.—Josephus, Antiquitates Judaicae 11,316.

As regards the historical evidence, it is impossible for me to consider that Paul and Peter where a kind of proto-Sabellians, identifying Christ with the Almighty God, and I think that I am in accordance with the mainstream scholarship of Patrology.

Beyond that, which can be easily proven, I think that Peter’s phraseology shows his word economy:

A ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ τοῦ θεοῦ ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
B ἐν ἐπιγνώσει τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν.

If B, which is in the text exactly after A, speaks of two persons, I don’t see why A cannot do the same. And I don’t believe that Peter was anxious enough to open a grammar book in order to check if his constructions comply with all the aspects of Sharp’s rule.
Would Wallace's quote, that I mentioned before, address your Hippolytus and Gregory of Nyssa quotes?

But the fact that all such patristic violations of Sharp's rule spoke of members of the Trinity,... and that the same writers elsewhere gave ample evidence of writing in conformity to the semantics of Sharp's rule, suggests that this exception is not really an exception." (p. 281)

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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by Vasileios Tsialas » August 2nd, 2011, 6:01 pm

Paul Rittman wrote: Would Wallace's quote, that I mentioned before, address your Hippolytus and Gregory of Nyssa quotes?

But the fact that all such patristic violations of Sharp's rule spoke of members of the Trinity,... and that the same writers elsewhere gave ample evidence of writing in conformity to the semantics of Sharp's rule, suggests that this exception is not really an exception." (p. 281)
If Wallace really means that there is a peculiar “Trinity-Grammar,” I really don’t understand what this could mean and how it could help us in reading 1 Peter 1:1.

1) To say that a specific doctrine has special grammatical rules sounds a bit weird to me. Of course, my knowledge and experience is nothing comparing to Wallace’, but I really need a heavy burden of evidence, before accepting something like that.

2) Wallace’ statement is misleading and seems fundamentally baseless because the definition of “Trinity” evolved during three centuries. Hence, if we don’t have a standard doctrine, how can we have a standard pattern of expression with standard meaning? Of course, we cannot. And can we speak of a “Trinity” in the NT? I believe the vast majority of experts in Biblical Studies and Patrology would deny that.

3) If the purpose of Sharp’s rule is to prove an fundamental aspect of the doctrine of Trinity, then to support this rule by taking for granted that there is a Trinity doctrine is a fallacy, and specifically a circular argument.

4) And, generally speaking, the argument seems to me a paradox. If Sharp’s rule doesn’t apply to the persons of the Trinity, then why do we apply it to 1 Peter 1:1, where (supposedly) we have persons of the “Trinity?”
Vasileios Tsialas

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David Lim
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by David Lim » August 3rd, 2011, 2:19 am

Vasileios Tsialas wrote:Or:
κατὰ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρὸς ἡμῶν͵ καὶ Κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ μονογενοῦς αὐτοῦ Υἱοῦ.—Pseudo-Basilius,Oratio pro inimicis et amicis 30,828.

Or:
ληφθέντων αἰχμαλώτων αὐτοῦ τῆς μητρὸς καὶ γυναικὸς καὶ τῶν τέκνων ἔφυγεν.—Josephus, Antiquitates Judaicae 11,316
Where can we find the original text from which you quoted Pseudo-Basilius? However I found Josephus' Antiquitates Judaicae at http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/tex ... tion%3D316:
Josephus AJ 11.316 wrote:ἀπέβη δ᾽ οὐχ ὡς προσεδόκων: συμβαλὼν γὰρ ὁ βασιλεὺς τοῖς Μακεδόσιν ἡττήθη καὶ πολλὴν τῆς στρατιᾶς ἀπολέσας ληφθέντων αἰχμαλώτων αὐτοῦ τῆς μητρὸς καὶ γυναικὸς καὶ τῶν τέκνων ἔφυγεν εἰς Πέρσας.
I am also interested to know what is the answer to this exception to Granville Sharp's rule.

And how about this?
[John 13] [14] ει ουν εγω ενιψα υμων τους ποδας ο κυριος και ο διδασκαλος και υμεις οφειλετε αλληλων νιπτειν τους ποδας
= therefore if I, the lord and the teacher, washed your feet, also you ought to wash one another's feet
(Sharp's "Rule VI" says exception is granted based on the context as stated in http://www.theologue.org/downloads/sharp.pdf. But if exceptions are based on the context, it cannot be a grammatical rule but rather a semantically based principle, can it?)
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by Vasileios Tsialas » August 4th, 2011, 6:11 am

David Lim wrote:
Vasileios Tsialas wrote:Or:
κατὰ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρὸς ἡμῶν͵ καὶ Κυρίου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ μονογενοῦς αὐτοῦ Υἱοῦ.—Pseudo-Basilius,Oratio pro inimicis et amicis 30,828.
Where can we find the original text from which you quoted Pseudo-Basilius?
30 is the volume of Migne's Patrologia Graeca and 828 is the column, if you can find PG online.

Otherwise, if you put the quotation in a search machine as Google, you will find an online document that has the text.
Vasileios Tsialas

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MAubrey
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by MAubrey » August 4th, 2011, 12:14 pm

Vasileios Tsialas wrote:Wallace’ statement is misleading and seems fundamentally baseless because the definition of “Trinity” evolved during three centuries. Hence, if we don’t have a standard doctrine, how can we have a standard pattern of expression with standard meaning? Of course, we cannot. And can we speak of a “Trinity” in the NT? I believe the vast majority of experts in Biblical Studies and Patrology would deny that.
I should say first off that I have no theological interest here. Perhaps Wallace does. I don't know. But that's never been my interest. I'm a linguist, not a theologian. I'm only interested in whether or not Sharps rule is part of the structure of the language.

I certainly agree that Wallace's statement is odd and rather silly, but I think by commenting on your previous statement, I can express my point a little better...
Vasileios Tsialas wrote:It is a logical tendency in the Greek language, not an absolute rule. It cannot be an absolute rule when it has exceptions, when it is so complicated in order to avoid (unsuccessfully) exceptions; it cannot be an absolute rule in a developing lingua franca spoken mostly by multinational groups, and when it overlooks overwhelming historical data in the case of theology.
I also am at a complete loss as to why you think that the existence of exceptions bars the possibility of having a grammatical rule--I've never argued for an absolute rule. I'm yet to find a grammatical rule that fits your requirements of being exceptionless. Moreover, if the exceptions are generally principled in their existence, then I really don't know what the problem is. Your phrase "logical tendency" is key here. The Granville Sharp Rule clearly has absolutely nothing to do with logic. Many languages have no equivalent to it. So if this logical tendency is limited only to Greek then it is, by definition, bound by either (Ancient) Greek grammar or by Greek lexicon (which I wouldn't make a distinction between anyway).

In grammar and semantics, linguists talk about "prototype theory." Your "exceptions" are a great example of non-prototypicality. Sharps rule describes two coordinated singular, common, nouns sharing an article. That's the basic morpho-syntactic conception. When you add semantics to it, things change. The prototypical instance of the rule is always going to involve two common nouns with no inherent relationship to each other. Phrases like "lord and savior" and whatnot *can* be related. But in terms of their inherent semantics, any relationship is created by discourse context, not by definitions in the lexicon. However the situation is precisely distinct with του πατρός και υιού. The vast majority of the time, these two words are going to be in opposition to each other by their very nature. While "lord" and "savior" have no relationship in the lexicon, "father" and "son" have a clear relationship in the lexicon as closely related kinship terms. I'm not saying it would be impossible for a father to be the same person as the son. I'm saying that it's far less likely right off the bat and that's going to be dependent on the speaker and hearer's mental conceptions of the participants involved in the text.
David Lim wrote:But if exceptions are based on the context, it cannot be a grammatical rule but rather a semantically based principle, can it?)
What's the difference between a grammatical rule and a semantic principle, particularly when that semantic principle is language specific? If a semantic principle is limited to a single language and works, say, 85% of the time (that's just a number I've thrown out, I'm not interested in this issue enough to do any counting), and if a grammar consists of the whole system of a language and it structure, then how is this semantic principle not part of that grammar?

Fundamentally, my point is that considering just how systematic the non-exceptions are. I am willing to say with a fair amount of confidence that the exceptions, if you (found and) dug through enough of them, are equally systematic.
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David Lim
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Re: Examples of the Granville Sharp rule outside the NT

Post by David Lim » August 4th, 2011, 9:10 pm

MAubrey wrote:
David Lim wrote:But if exceptions are based on the context, it cannot be a grammatical rule but rather a semantically based principle, can it?)
What's the difference between a grammatical rule and a semantic principle, particularly when that semantic principle is language specific? If a semantic principle is limited to a single language and works, say, 85% of the time (that's just a number I've thrown out, I'm not interested in this issue enough to do any counting), and if a grammar consists of the whole system of a language and it structure, then how is this semantic principle not part of that grammar?

Fundamentally, my point is that considering just how systematic the non-exceptions are. I am willing to say with a fair amount of confidence that the exceptions, if you (found and) dug through enough of them, are equally systematic.
Sorry I meant "syntactical rule" when I said "grammatical rule". Since you agree that "father" and "son" are typically mutually exclusive and therefore form an exception, then that was all I was trying to establish, which means that it is not syntactical constructions (article + singular personal noun + και + singular personal noun) that determine the meaning but rather both syntactic and semantic considerations. :)

Furthermore, it is not true that the semantic principle I mentioned only applies in Greek. It also occurs in English in my opinion.
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