Rita Ho wrote:I have two questions arising from studying “Basics of Biblical Greek”:
1. Para. 4, p.21: “Karen threw Brad the ball.” “The direct object is “ball”; she threw the ball. But she threw the ball to Brad. Brad is the indirect object…In Greek, we put the indirect object in the dative case by putting dative case endings on the word. The dative carries other meanings as well, such as “by”, “in”, and “for” along with “to”.”
Question: From the above information, what is the case endings of the dative case in order to indicate the indirect object of the sentence?
The Greek dative incorporates three older cases with somewhat different functions: (1) the "true" dative, indicating the person(s) to or for whom the verb asserts something (the "beneficiary"), (2) the "instrumental/comitative" dative, indicating the person(s) or thing(s) that are concomitant to a verbal assertion, and (3) "locative" dative, indicating the time or place in which or at which a verbal assertion is concerned. In English these three usages are commonly indicated by distinct prepositions: (1) "true"dative: "to" or "for",(2) "instrumental/comitative" dative by "with," "by," or "by means of", and (3) "locative" dative by "in" or "at." In your sentence Brad is the indirect object and you would use the (true) dative case to indicate that.
2. Pt., 6.8, p. 30: “…you will learn two of the five Greek cases.”
Question: As far as I know, the Greek has four cases including nominative, genitive, dative and accusative. Thus, what’s more?
The four cases you've listed are the regular cases used to indicate syntactic function, but we usually also consider VOCATIVE to be a regular case; it indicates the person(s) (less commonly, things) addressed directly. The vocative case is ordinarily identical with the nominative form in the plural, but in the singular of the second declension, the vocative ending is -ε and in the singular of the third declension, the vocative ending is usually the weakest possible form of the noun stem.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)
ὁ ἀναγινώσκων νοείτω