οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Semantic Range, Lexicography, and other approaches to word meaning - in general, or for particular words.
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Stephen Hughes
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οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 2:00 am

Here's a question I've been meaning to ask for almost 20 years...

Are οἶμαι & οἴμαι different words or different editorial practices?
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Post by cwconrad » May 24th, 2014, 5:27 am

Stephen Hughes wrote:Here's a question I've been meaning to ask for almost 20 years...

Are οἶμαι & οἴμαι different words or different editorial practices?
The verb οἶμαι "suppose, guess" is a contracted form of οἴομαι.
According to LSJ, the noun οἴμη "lay, way of song" is paroxytone, but the nom pl. is properispomenon, οἶμαι -- exactly like the contracted verb -- for the reason that the nom. pl. ending in -αι is short.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

Stephen Hughes
Posts: 3323
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 12:06 pm

cwconrad wrote:
Stephen Hughes wrote:Here's a question I've been meaning to ask for almost 20 years...

Are οἶμαι & οἴμαι different words or different editorial practices?
The verb οἶμαι "suppose, guess" is a contracted form of οἴομαι.
According to LSJ, the noun οἴμη "lay, way of song" is paroxytone, but the nom pl. is properispomenon, οἶμαι -- exactly like the contracted verb -- for the reason that the nom. pl. ending in -αι is short.
Thanks. And so much for οἶμαι. What, then, is οἴμαι?
0 x
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Post by cwconrad » May 24th, 2014, 12:15 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:
cwconrad wrote:
Stephen Hughes wrote:Here's a question I've been meaning to ask for almost 20 years...

Are οἶμαι & οἴμαι different words or different editorial practices?
The verb οἶμαι "suppose, guess" is a contracted form of οἴομαι.
According to LSJ, the noun οἴμη "lay, way of song" is paroxytone, but the nom pl. is properispomenon, οἶμαι -- exactly like the contracted verb -- for the reason that the nom. pl. ending in -αι is short.
Thanks. And so much for οἶμαι. What, then, is οἴμαι?
Most likely a typographical error, and more likely an error for the 1st sg. of the verb οἶμαι than for the plural of the noun οἴμη. But presumably you didn't find this as a word wholly without a context.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

Stephen Hughes
Posts: 3323
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

The Victorian-era zoo as a model for dictionaries.

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 1:08 pm

cwconrad wrote:But presumably you didn't find this as a word wholly without a context.
Well, in fact, 20 years ago it was in a text - Republic or Symposium - and recently in a dictionary.

What is the model for a dictionay?

Perhaps it is like the splitting up of a family or society, where all members with a similar function are broadly classified together, further categorised and labeled, and then each on is confined to a little cell of their own. There is an identifying photo on the door of the cell. One shot from the front, another from the left side. If the ravages of time have left a scar, or if there was some birth defect, then perhaps the right side or the back could be recorded in the photograph at the door as well.

The words sit forlornly in their cells, like once powerful animals caged up in a Vicotian era zoo. The beast who once commanded the prairie can turn itself around in the enclosure with some difficulty. Some times, a once-scociable creature is given a single branch to play on with some painted ply-wood semblences of some of its friends, with which it used to frollick and shriek. In some other cases, there just a single twig, which it occassionally reaches out to touch trying hard to remember the life it once enjoyed, in many trees with many sights and sounds, while all the while observers believe they can see its natural habitat - and feel that just perhaps maybe, they have visited some exotic and far away jungle or savanah - but, in fact they never needed to get their shoes muddy by trugging through some obscure text themselves.

Then there are the rows upon rows of specimen jars and trays of insects - by now all dull and dust-covered - pinned onto cork or some other soft wood, arranged according to some order of magnitude or size that never had meaning before it was applied to order them. In other cases, they are arranged each with a single name beneath them, and as we run or eyes along the rows of the glossary, we find lifelessness and a complete lack of interaction between the bugs and their environment or each other. I mind grows numb to the life they once enjoyed, and we are led to believe over time that the most important thing that we can do with the little specimen pinned dead on the page is to memorise its name in either just English, or if we are really clever in Latin too.

There are of course those, who suggest we ourselves should go to Borneo, the Amazon or the Kruger National Park. The ones who say go, are usually the ones that have been there themselves. Seeing a creature in a zoo or natural history museum is a reminder for them of what they saw or experienced themselves.

But who does that these days when we have some digital programme to walk us through things safely from the comfort of our homes. In fact, we don't ever need to observe the animals ourselves now.

There are computer-generated digital simulations that not only allow us to see the animals movements in far greater detail than we would be able to ourselves, but also give us "meaningful and relevant" statistics in columns down the side of the screen. More advanced simulation programmes allow the user to control and master the creature's movements, not just to watch.

In other words... I did find it out of context, yes, in a dictionary.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι

Post by cwconrad » May 24th, 2014, 2:52 pm

Yes, and I can see now what you mean about it all being Greek to you. On the other hand, reading your rationale has afforded considerable satisfaction and entertainment. Enlightenment is something else.

I'm still betting it's a typo for οἶμαι. On the other hand (how many hands am I allowed?), it could very well be a typo for οἴμοι, a sigh that Shakespeare might have encountered and Englished in the course of mastering his less Greek. In fact, οἴμοι is probably the most satisfactory response to the original query.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

Stephen Hughes
Posts: 3323
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι - List of NT examples

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 3:58 pm

cwconrad wrote:On the other hand, reading your rationale has afforded considerable satisfaction and entertainment. Enlightenment is something else.
The similitude of arrangement between a dictionary and a Victorian-era zoo is one of my least favourite things about language learning.
cwconrad wrote:But presumably you didn't find this as a word wholly without a context.
The contexts in the New Testament have only some of the forms contracted, it seems. Could that be that they were uncontracted, or perhaps that those forms were not so analytically divided as to separate the thematic vowel from that ending, ie another thematic vowel was added analogously to how they might be formed for the -μι verbs? It doesn't seem to be dependent on the syntactic structure (context as you asked after) that it falls within.
James 1:7 wrote:Μὴ γὰρ οἰέσθω ὁ ἄνθρωπος ἐκεῖνος ὅτι λήψεταί τι παρὰ τοῦ κυρίου.
Form: οἰέσθω, Structure: οἶμαι + ὅτι
John 21:25 wrote:Ἔστιν δὲ καὶ ἄλλα πολλὰ ὅσα ἐποίησεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς, ἅτινα ἐὰν γράφηται καθ’ ἕν, οὐδὲ αὐτὸν οἶμαι τὸν κόσμον χωρῆσαι τὰ γραφόμενα βιβλία. Ἀμήν.
Form: οἶμαι, Structure: οἶμαι + acc. & inf.
Philipians 1:16 (SBLGNT readers should look at verse 17) wrote:οἱ μὲν ἐξ ἐριθείας τὸν χριστὸν καταγγέλλουσιν, οὐχ ἁγνῶς, οἰόμενοι θλῖψιν ἐπιφέρειν τοῖς δεσμοῖς μου·
Form: οἰόμενοι, Structure: οἶμαι + acc. & inf.
Last edited by Stephen Hughes on May 24th, 2014, 4:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Stephen Hughes
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Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι - The extent of my ignorance.

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 4:05 pm

cwconrad wrote:Yes, and I can see now what you mean about it all being Greek to you.
Yes, this is one of those things that I'm not to clear about. In fact most of my postings are implicit questions. They relate to things that I am looking into. Consequently, and unlike yourself, the volume of my posting on B-Greek is proportional to the extent of my ignorance, (not to my knowledge) of Greek.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι - The extent of my ignorance.

Post by cwconrad » May 24th, 2014, 4:25 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:
cwconrad wrote:Yes, and I can see now what you mean about it all being Greek to you.
Yes, this is one of those things that I'm not to clear about. In fact most of my postings are implicit questions. They relate to things that I am looking into. Consequently, and unlike yourself, the volume of my posting on B-Greek is proportional to the extent of my ignorance, (not to my knowledge) of Greek.
I somehow think that I've already cited to you this little snippet of Goethe from the West-Östlicher Divan (and you know very well that I haven't read the whole of that) It seems apt for this context:
-- Meinst Du denn wirklich was Du sagst?
-- Meinst Du denn wirklich was Du fragst?
-- Wem kümmert's was ich meine und sage?
Denn alles Meinen ist nur Frage.

meinen = οἴεσθαι. My experience of this verb is that it's so commonly used in Plato especially -- and I have read one hell of a lot of Plato -- that I got used to the eccentrics/idiosyncrasies of its usage.
0 x
οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

Stephen Hughes
Posts: 3323
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

Re: οἶμαι & οἴμαι - Trying to sound philosophical

Post by Stephen Hughes » May 24th, 2014, 4:49 pm

cwconrad wrote:meinen = οἴεσθαι. My experience of this verb is that it's so commonly used in Plato especially -- and I have read one hell of a lot of Plato -- that I got used to the eccentrics/idiosyncrasies of its usage.
What would it mean to sound philosophical at a popular level? Probably to sound like you are thinking about something at an "exaggerated" level, to over think (or discuss - as discussion is in some respect thinking communally).

Those two examples of οἶμαι + acc. & inf. seem to fit that bill. Perhaps one of the other verbs of thinking / supposing would have a more neutral effect - and sound less sophisticated. It is a possible initial thought, but would need time and further reading-experience to consider it.
cwconrad wrote:I somehow think that I've already cited to you this little snippet of Goethe from the West-Östlicher Divan
Revisiting the language again after so many years, both unearths old questions and raises new ones. I expect that as I master the language, and become comfortable with the phrase, "In Greek we ...", then my questions such as these will gradually diminish.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

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