Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

How do I work out the meaning of a Greek text? How can I best understand the forms and vocabulary in this particular text?
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Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby Roy Fredrick » October 27th, 2012, 9:58 am

Which is correct them or it? And why do most translations leave out the word ἄνθρωπος ? Matthew 13:28 (ESV) Matthew 13:28 (KJ21) Matthew 13:28 (ASV) Matthew 13:28 (AMP) Matthew 13:28 (GNT) Matthew 13:28 (KJV) Matthew 13:28 (NIV) Matthew 13:28 (WYC)
Mt 13:28 ὁ δὲ ἔφη αὐτοῖς Ἐχθρὸς ἄνθρωπος τοῦτο ἐποίησεν. οἱ δὲ αὐτῷ λέγουσιν Θέλεις οὖν ἀπελθόντες συλλέξωμεν αὐτά;
Westcott and Hort says: αὐτά personal/possessive pronoun: accusative plural neuter
However, YLT has the singular Matthew 13:28 (YLT) and Matthew 13:28 (DARBY)
28 And he saith to them, A man, an enemy, did this; and the servants said to him, Wilt thou, then, that having gone away we may gather it up?

Which I translate as:Mt 13:28 He said to them, a man1, an enemy has done this thing. And the servants said to him, Do you wish then that we go and gather2 them up?
1. ανθρωπος man
2. συλλέγω gather, collect, compile, pick, raise, rake, round up, cluster
Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon
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Re: Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby Barry Hofstetter » October 27th, 2012, 8:17 pm

Roy, this is much more like it. Two observations:

1) Some translations omit ἄνθρωπος simply because it sounds redundant in English. Context indicates that the enemy who has done the deed is also a person. At the same time, translating as you have is not wrong either.

2) As for the singular vs. the plural translation of αὐτά it depends on whether you view the ζιζάνια as individual weeds or as kind of a collective. I personally would use the plural here. The closer that we can keep it to the Greek and still have good English, the better.

I think I might render "A hostile person has done this..." for the first part. The point is that it wasn't an accident, a few stray weeds that somehow mixed in, but that it was done by an actual person acting as an enemy to the land holder.
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Re: Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby Barry Hofstetter » October 27th, 2012, 8:19 pm

I had meant to add that you don't need constantly to quote standard references to bolster your points. Most of us know Greek sufficiently well that we know what the vocabulary means, and if not, we have access to those same references. You are simply cluttering up your posts.
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Re: Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby Roy Fredrick » October 27th, 2012, 9:28 pm

Barry Hofstetter wrote:I had meant to add that you don't need constantly to quote standard references to bolster your points. Most of us know Greek sufficiently well that we know what the vocabulary means, and if not, we have access to those same references. You are simply cluttering up your posts.

Okay, thanks!
I find a certain man in Mat 18:23 is that correct? or is it "a man"?

Διὰ τοῦτο ὡμοιώθη ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν ἀνθρώπῳ βασιλεῖ ὃς ἠθέλησεν συνᾶραι λόγον μετὰ τῶν δούλων αὐτοῦ·
Mat 18:23 For this cause, has the kingdom of the heavens become like a certain man, a king, who wished to raise up an account with his servants;
And is ὡμοιώθη aor.pass.inf.?
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Re: Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby timothy_p_mcmahon » October 28th, 2012, 12:50 am

A similar usage, ανθρωπος εχθρος, is found in Esther 7:6 LXX as a woodenly literal rendering of the Hebrew original. Perhaps the phrase was standard in Jewish Greek.
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Re: Mt 13:28 ἄνθρωπος αὐτά

Postby Ken M. Penner » October 28th, 2012, 5:50 am

Roy Fredrick wrote:I find a certain man in Mat 18:23 is that correct? or is it "a man"?

Διὰ τοῦτο ὡμοιώθη ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν ἀνθρώπῳ βασιλεῖ ὃς ἠθέλησεν συνᾶραι λόγον μετὰ τῶν δούλων αὐτοῦ·
...
And is ὡμοιώθη aor.pass.inf.?

ὡμοιώθη is aorist passive indicative, third person singular. For such questions, Perseus is helpful. For example, http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/mor ... h&la=greek
On the basis of your past posts, I get the impression that you favour word-for-word translations, in which case I would not think adding "certain" to "man" would be appropriate.
However, as you spend more time here, you will probably find that this forum tends to promote understanding the text on its own, by which I mean without translating it into English. Many of the most active participants here are highly competent, able to think in Greek without needing to "English" the text. You may find a better reception if you asked questions about how to understand the text in Greek, rather than how to translate it.
For example, in this case, you might ask if there is anything in the Greek text that suggests a specific person is in mind, or something that indicates a hypothetical story is being told (two of the functions of "certain" in English). Or you might ask why ἀνθρώπῳ would be included, since βασιλεῖ by itself would have sufficed.

I hope this also helps explain some of the reactions you've been receiving.
Peace,
Ken (also one of the moderators)
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