help with prayer text, please

Post Reply
Posts: 226
Joined: June 3rd, 2011, 10:47 pm

help with prayer text, please

Post by timothy_p_mcmahon » February 8th, 2018, 11:36 pm

Am reading a Byzantine-era prayer sent to me recently and am stumped over a little word in the text:

question.png (463.16 KiB) Viewed 593 times
Couldn't find anything that made sense in BDAG or LSJ. Can anyone decode this for me?

Robert Emil Berge
Posts: 40
Joined: August 24th, 2016, 1:34 pm

Re: help with prayer text, please

Post by Robert Emil Berge » February 9th, 2018, 6:29 am

It's probably supposed to be a crasis of καί + ἄν or καί + ἐν, but then it should have been written κἂν or κἀν, so the last option is most likely I guess, since then you just have an accent instead of a breathing mark, which is a likely error. But it seems very strange there, I think. I googled your text and found another edition of it which is different, but even stranger: ... οὐ μόνον οὐδὲ κἂν διὰ λόγου προσέφερον αὐτῷ ... Anyway, the text seems to be uncertain here.

A LSJ search gave only one example of "διά καὶ ἐν", but that's really funny: "ὅταν τὴν αὐτὴν εὑρήσῃ διὰ καὶ
ἐν τῷ διὰ τοῦ Λόγου τὸ Πνεῦμα συνάπτεσθαι τῷ Πατρί."

What is strange is that λόγου takes the case from διά and not from ἐν, but it is a strange construction anyway, so it should probably not matter. I'm not used to reading this late Greek, so there might be something I don't see at all.

Seumas Macdonald
Posts: 17
Joined: June 17th, 2013, 3:14 am
Location: Mongolia

Re: help with prayer text, please

Post by Seumas Macdonald » February 9th, 2018, 7:18 am

The text does seem odd, I just thought I should add that κἄν is generally crasis for καὶ + ἄν or καὶ + εἰ + ἄν, and the addition of the εἰ might make this more intelligible.

Barry Hofstetter
Posts: 1204
Joined: May 6th, 2011, 1:48 pm

Re: help with prayer text, please

Post by Barry Hofstetter » February 9th, 2018, 12:55 pm

I think most likely it's simply printer's error for:

κἂν (καὶ ἄν), at least, even, but. Marc. 5:28; 6:56; Luc. Act. 5:15. Just. Apol. 1, 26. 2, 8.—Κἂν εἷς, κἂν μία, κἂν ἕν, even one, at least one. Philon II, 29, 13 Κἂν ἕν τι τῶν πάντων. Lucian. I, 618. II, 72 Κἂν ἓν γὰρ δὴ τοῦτο ἀληθεύων λέγω, this one at least. Clementin. 13, 9. Theophil. 1041 C. Galen. VI, 349 D Κἂν μιᾶς ἡμέρας, for at least one day. Sext. 102, 16. Clem. A. I, 748 A. II, 645 C. Philostr. Epist. 38. Apophth. 261 B. Abuc. 1548 D.—Polyb. 3, 9, 2 Οὐδὲ χωρίζεσθαι κἂν ἅπαξ, not even once.
2. About, before a numeral, = περί, ἀμφὶ τούς. Gregent. 612 A Κἂν εἷς, some one. Leont. Cypr. 1709 B. Chron. 723, 20, ἑβδομήκοντα κάραβοι, some seventy boats. 733, ἑξήκοντα ἄλογα, about sixty horses.

Sophocles, E. A. (1900). Greek Lexicon of the Roman and Byzantine Periods (From B. C. 146 to A. D. 1100) (Memorial Edition, p. 626). New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.

The sense is that the confessor has not even successfully offered thanks in word, much less in deed.
N.E. Barry Hofstetter
Instructor of Latin
Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
Χαίρετε ἐν κυρίῳ πάντοτε· πάλιν ἐρῶ, χαίρετε

Posts: 226
Joined: June 3rd, 2011, 10:47 pm

Re: help with prayer text, please

Post by timothy_p_mcmahon » February 10th, 2018, 3:32 am

Thanks so much for the helpful responses.

I had dismissed the possibility of crasis due to the absence of the breathing mark. The position still puzzles me, but overall it seems to make sense.

James Ernest
Posts: 41
Joined: May 6th, 2011, 1:26 pm

Re: help with prayer text, please

Post by James Ernest » February 17th, 2018, 7:59 am

I keep wanting to read καν as German keine. :D Seems it should say ου μόνον ου δια λόγου προσέφερον (pardon the random diacritics).
James D. Ernest, PhD
VP, Editor-in-Chief
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Grand Rapids, MI

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest