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John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: January 31st, 2018, 5:57 am
by PhillipLebsack
John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·...


I would like to know if I am understanding this construction properly or not. There are two ways I'm looking at this, but I'm not sure which is correct...

Explanation 1)
1. It looks like τοῖς goes with the participle πωλοῦσιν (which is functioning like a substantive adjectival participle).
2. But then τὰς περιστερὰς the noun and its definite article are sandwiched between the definite article of the participle and the participle.
3. It would be translated as: "To those selling the pigeons..."


Explanation 2)
1. τοῖς as a definite article is weak here and is, therefore, acting like a personal pronoun. So, it isn't necessarily connected to the participle in the sense that it is the participle's definite article.
2. τὰς περιστερὰς means "the pigeons" and is accusative in this clause.
3. πωλοῦσιν is the participle functioning verbal proper in the clause: "selling".
4. It would still be translated as: "To those selling the pigeons..."


Though they would be translated the same, which explanation is right? If either of them is.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: January 31st, 2018, 7:15 am
by Jason Hare
It's number 1. The πωλοῦσιν is the dative participle in this case.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: January 31st, 2018, 10:47 am
by PhillipLebsack
Jason Hare wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 7:15 am
It's number 1. The πωλοῦσιν is the dative participle in this case.
Hello. Thanks for your reply Jason.

So τοῖς goes with πωλοῦσιν because they are of the same case number and gender, and the noun sandwich construction is just something that is possible in the language?

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: January 31st, 2018, 11:05 am
by Jonathan Robie
PhillipLebsack wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 10:47 am
So τοῖς goes with πωλοῦσιν because they are of the same case number and gender, and the noun sandwich construction is just something that is possible in the language?
Yes, and this kind of sandwiching is very common in Greek.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: January 31st, 2018, 3:28 pm
by MAubrey
PhillipLebsack wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 10:47 am
Jason Hare wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 7:15 am
It's number 1. The πωλοῦσιν is the dative participle in this case.
Hello. Thanks for your reply Jason.

So τοῖς goes with πωλοῦσιν because they are of the same case number and gender, and the noun sandwich construction is just something that is possible in the language?
It's because participles function as heads of subordinate clauses. So here:

[NP: τοῖς (Participle Clause: [Object of Part-CL: τὰς περιστερὰς] πωλοῦσιν)]

It isn't so much that τὰς περιστερὰς is sandwiched between the article and the participle, but that the article τοῖς functions over the entire participle clause, not merely the participle itself.

Saying, τὰς περιστερὰς τοῖς πωλοῦσιν would be ungrammatical, but τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν and τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς would both be acceptable while have different nuances. In context, τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν is preferred because in 2:14 John has introduced a list βόας καὶ πρόβατα καὶ περιστερὰς καὶ τοὺς κερματιστὰς καθημένους, in 2:15 he deals with all of them except for the doves, to which he turns in 2:16. Fronting something from a list that had already been introduced is a standard way to move through members of a list like this--note that after dealing with the oxen and the sheep together in verse 15, he fronts money changers (κολλυβιστῶν) before its verb too.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: February 1st, 2018, 6:28 am
by PhillipLebsack
MAubrey wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 3:28 pm
PhillipLebsack wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 10:47 am
Jason Hare wrote:
January 31st, 2018, 7:15 am
It's number 1. The πωλοῦσιν is the dative participle in this case.
Hello. Thanks for your reply Jason.

So τοῖς goes with πωλοῦσιν because they are of the same case number and gender, and the noun sandwich construction is just something that is possible in the language?
It's because participles function as heads of subordinate clauses. So here:

[NP: τοῖς (Participle Clause: [Object of Part-CL: τὰς περιστερὰς] πωλοῦσιν)]

It isn't so much that τὰς περιστερὰς is sandwiched between the article and the participle, but that the article τοῖς functions over the entire participle clause, not merely the participle itself.

Saying, τὰς περιστερὰς τοῖς πωλοῦσιν would be ungrammatical, but τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν and τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς would both be acceptable while have different nuances. In context, τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν is preferred because in 2:14 John has introduced a list βόας καὶ πρόβατα καὶ περιστερὰς καὶ τοὺς κερματιστὰς καθημένους, in 2:15 he deals with all of them except for the doves, to which he turns in 2:16. Fronting something from a list that had already been introduced is a standard way to move through members of a list like this--note that after dealing with the oxen and the sheep together in verse 15, he fronts money changers (κολλυβιστῶν) before its verb too.
Thank you for your response. That makes a lot of sense actually. The definite article τοῖς is the head of the participle clause, marking the beginning of it, with the participle πωλοῦσιν marking the end of the participle clause...
and τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς would both be acceptable while having different nuances.
What exactly are the different nuances?
In context, τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν is preferred because in 2:14 John has introduced a list βόας καὶ πρόβατα καὶ περιστερὰς καὶ τοὺς κερματιστὰς καθημένους, in 2:15 he deals with all of them except for the doves, to which he turns in 2:16. Fronting something from a list that had already been introduced is a standard way to move through members of a list like this--note that after dealing with the oxen and the sheep together in verse 15, he fronts money changers (κολλυβιστῶν) before its verb too.
If I am understanding this correctly, you're essentially saying that τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν
as opposed to τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς because the former construction is ideal for repeating something that has already been mentioned in a list? Is it as specific as that or can it be generalized more? I guess this also goes with my first question about the different nuances...

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: February 1st, 2018, 3:43 pm
by MAubrey
PhillipLebsack wrote:
February 1st, 2018, 6:28 am
What exactly are the different nuances?
MAubrey wrote:In context, τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν is preferred because in 2:14 John has introduced a list βόας καὶ πρόβατα καὶ περιστερὰς καὶ τοὺς κερματιστὰς καθημένους, in 2:15 he deals with all of them except for the doves, to which he turns in 2:16. Fronting something from a list that had already been introduced is a standard way to move through members of a list like this--note that after dealing with the oxen and the sheep together in verse 15, he fronts money changers (κολλυβιστῶν) before its verb too.
If I am understanding this correctly, you're essentially saying that τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν
as opposed to τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς because the former construction is ideal for repeating something that has already been mentioned in a list? Is it as specific as that or can it be generalized more? I guess this also goes with my first question about the different nuances...
The bit that followed was supposed to be a description of the relevant nuance.

The problem is that word order is complicated because it is influenced as a number of variables that may or may not be apparent or relevant in a given clause. So...it is as specific as that and it can also be generalized more.

A good start would be to read the Steven Runge's Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament. Part 3, chapters 9-14 can take you 90% of the way in terms of how word order works in Greek.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: February 2nd, 2018, 5:43 am
by PhillipLebsack
MAubrey wrote:
February 1st, 2018, 3:43 pm
PhillipLebsack wrote:
February 1st, 2018, 6:28 am
What exactly are the different nuances?
MAubrey wrote:In context, τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν is preferred because in 2:14 John has introduced a list βόας καὶ πρόβατα καὶ περιστερὰς καὶ τοὺς κερματιστὰς καθημένους, in 2:15 he deals with all of them except for the doves, to which he turns in 2:16. Fronting something from a list that had already been introduced is a standard way to move through members of a list like this--note that after dealing with the oxen and the sheep together in verse 15, he fronts money changers (κολλυβιστῶν) before its verb too.
If I am understanding this correctly, you're essentially saying that τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν
as opposed to τοῖς πωλοῦσιν τὰς περιστερὰς because the former construction is ideal for repeating something that has already been mentioned in a list? Is it as specific as that or can it be generalized more? I guess this also goes with my first question about the different nuances...
The bit that followed was supposed to be a description of the relevant nuance.

The problem is that word order is complicated because it is influenced as a number of variables that may or may not be apparent or relevant in a given clause. So...it is as specific as that and it can also be generalized more.

A good start would be to read the Steven Runge's Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament. Part 3, chapters 9-14 can take you 90% of the way in terms of how word order works in Greek.
Thank you for your response MAubrey. I have Runge's book and I will definitely read through that. My reading list quite long...

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: February 2nd, 2018, 6:54 am
by PhillipLebsack
MAubrey wrote:
February 1st, 2018, 3:43 pm

A good start would be to read the Steven Runge's Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament. Part 3, chapters 9-14 can take you 90% of the way in terms of how word order works in Greek.
I've started reading Runge's book and I have to say, this is one of the best recommendations i've gotten. So far, I highly recommend this for people at my level. Thanks again MAubrey.

Re: John 2:16 καὶ τοῖς τὰς περιστερὰς πωλοῦσιν εἶπεν·

Posted: February 3rd, 2018, 5:08 pm
by MAubrey
PhillipLebsack wrote:
February 2nd, 2018, 6:54 am
MAubrey wrote:
February 1st, 2018, 3:43 pm

A good start would be to read the Steven Runge's Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament. Part 3, chapters 9-14 can take you 90% of the way in terms of how word order works in Greek.
I've started reading Runge's book and I have to say, this is one of the best recommendations i've gotten. So far, I highly recommend this for people at my level. Thanks again MAubrey.
Happy to oblige. Enjoy!