Split Constituent in John 2:11

Forum rules
Please quote the Greek text you are discussing directly in your post if it is reasonably short - do not ask people to look it up. This is not a beginner's forum, competence in Greek is assumed.
Jonathan Robie
Posts: 3744
Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:34 pm
Location: Durham, NC
Contact:

Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Jonathan Robie » March 31st, 2017, 3:05 pm

John 2:11 wrote:Ταύτην ἐποίησεν ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας καὶ ἐφανέρωσεν τὴν δόξαν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐπίστευσαν εἰς αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ.
As I read this, Ταύτην ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων is the object of ἐποίησεν, but this object is split by the verb. So if you gather the object into one place, it looks like this:

o Ταύτην ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων
v ἐποίησεν
s ὁ Ἰησοῦς
adv ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας

or in sentence order, using o.1 to indicate that there is just one object, object #1, which is split (as opposed to two distinct objects):

o.1 Ταύτην ...
v ἐποίησεν
o.1 ... ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων
s ὁ Ἰησοῦς
adv ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας

Why do you think the constituent is split in this verse?
0 x


ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

Stirling Bartholomew
Posts: 1104
Joined: August 9th, 2012, 4:19 pm

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » March 31st, 2017, 4:04 pm

FWIW, Wallace GGBB p242 n66 discusses this passage, although he doesn't directly address your question.

google: syntax "John 2:11"
0 x
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Robert Crowe
Posts: 108
Joined: January 8th, 2016, 11:06 am
Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Robert Crowe » March 31st, 2017, 8:38 pm

Essentially, Wallace takes ταύτην . . . ἀρχήν not as a single constituent, but constituents in an Object Complement construction. 'Jesus made this to be the first of his signs' [GGBB, p187 in a discussion of Jn 4.54, and n40]
0 x
Tús maith leath na hoibre.

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

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stephen Hughes » April 1st, 2017, 1:28 am

Jonathan Robie wrote:
March 31st, 2017, 3:05 pm
... using o.1 to indicate that there is just one object, object #1, which is split (as opposed to two distinct objects):

o.1 Ταύτην ...
v ἐποίησεν
o.1 ... ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων
s ὁ Ἰησοῦς
adv ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας

Why do you think the constituent is split in this verse?
Ταύτην (οὗτος) is a contextualiser so in word order comes first.
ποιέω, ἀρχή (in the sense of "start", rather than "rulership"), and σημεῖα (in the sense of a small specific miracle) are all low-context, specific words. ὁ Ἰησοῦς is a specific person and ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας is added detail.

The broadest most abstract or general thing is said first the most specific thing comes last. In terms of fancy tricks with fonts you could
Ταύτην ἐποίησεν ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας
καὶ ἐφανέρωσεν τὴν δόξαν αὐτοῦ,
καὶ ἐπίστευσαν εἰς αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ.

Or something like that.
0 x
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Stirling Bartholomew
Posts: 1104
Joined: August 9th, 2012, 4:19 pm

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » April 1st, 2017, 1:37 am

Robert Crowe wrote:
March 31st, 2017, 8:38 pm
Essentially, Wallace takes ταύτην . . . ἀρχήν not as a single constituent, but constituents in an Object Complement construction. 'Jesus made this to be the first of his signs' [GGBB, p187 in a discussion of Jn 4.54, and n40]
Robert,

Ignoreing the english offered by Wallace, the syntax appears to be noncontroversial. I looked in all the usual places, ATR p701-702,771; N. Turner, p192, BDF #292, H.A.W. Meyer, H. Alford, en loc. The absence of an article with ἀρχήν is the deciding factor.
0 x
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Stephen Carlson
Posts: 3045
Joined: May 11th, 2011, 10:51 am
Location: Melbourne
Contact:

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stephen Carlson » April 1st, 2017, 8:09 am

Jonathan Robie wrote:
March 31st, 2017, 3:05 pm
John 2:11 wrote:Ταύτην ἐποίησεν ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας καὶ ἐφανέρωσεν τὴν δόξαν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐπίστευσαν εἰς αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ.
Why do you think the constituent is split in this verse?
(NB: Some definitions of constituency require contiguity, so they can't be split by definition.)

Stephen Levinsohn analyzes this as ταύτην in pre-verbal focus, with the rest of it following the verb. I haven't looked at the context so whether that's a plausible analysis.
0 x
Stephen C. Carlson, Ph.D.
Melbourne, Australia

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

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stephen Hughes » April 1st, 2017, 8:51 am

Cf. Luke 2:10

(Sorry I can't quote it).
0 x
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Jonathan Robie
Posts: 3744
Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:34 pm
Location: Durham, NC
Contact:

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Jonathan Robie » April 1st, 2017, 2:08 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:
April 1st, 2017, 8:09 am
Stephen Levinsohn analyzes this as ταύτην in pre-verbal focus, with the rest of it following the verb. I haven't looked at the context so whether that's a plausible analysis.
I can't quite render this in English, but perhaps this comes close to the sense as Levinsohn sees it?
This he did - the first of his signs - in Cana of Galilee, and manifested his glory.
0 x
ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

Jonathan Robie
Posts: 3744
Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:34 pm
Location: Durham, NC
Contact:

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Jonathan Robie » April 1st, 2017, 2:15 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:
April 1st, 2017, 8:51 am
Cf. Luke 2:10

(Sorry I can't quote it).
Luke 2:10 wrote:καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὁ ἄγγελος· Μὴ φοβεῖσθε, ἰδοὺ γὰρ εὐαγγελίζομαι ὑμῖν χαρὰν μεγάλην ἥτις ἔσται παντὶ τῷ λαῷ,
What parallel do you see? My poor blind eyes don't see a split focus here.
0 x
ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

Stirling Bartholomew
Posts: 1104
Joined: August 9th, 2012, 4:19 pm

Re: Split Constituent in John 2:11

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » April 1st, 2017, 3:39 pm

John 2:11 Ταύτην ἐποίησεν ἀρχὴν τῶν σημείων ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἐν Κανὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας καὶ ἐφανέρωσεν τὴν δόξαν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐπίστευσαν εἰς αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ
.

Prof. Carlson is looking at something later from Levinsohn than Discourse Features NTG 2000, where on page 83 bottom this Ταύτην is underlined but not bold.

My understanding, not leaning on anyone else: Ταύτην is the link to the preceding context which I call a contextualizer. It isn't the most salient constituent. Ταύτην does not form a constituent with ἀρχὴν so nothing is divided. The traditional grammars taken collectively are somewhat confusing but if you are willing to muddle through them an approximation of clarity emerges. The idea that Ταύτην is moved forward is questionable. That concept can be traced at least as far back as Chomsky '57 (see movement in David Crystal, Dict. Lang. & Ling.). I have come to question some of the fundamental unspoken assumptions that linger just below the surface in NT Greek word order discussions and movement is one of them. Movement implies something akin to deep structure which combines with transformations. If you eliminate the idea of some fundamental prototypical word order then movement becomes unnecessary.
0 x
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Post Reply

Return to “New Testament”