Buying - ὠνήσασθαι v. ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι

Semantic Range, Lexicography, and other approaches to word meaning - in general, or for particular words.

Buying - ὠνήσασθαι v. ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι

Postby Stephen Hughes » April 4th, 2014, 5:08 pm

Does anyone have any thoughts as to why the older verb ὠνήσασθαι is used in
Acts 7:16 (Byz2005) wrote:καὶ μετετέθησαν εἰς Συχέμ , καὶ ἐτέθησαν ἐν τῷ μνήματι ὃ ὠνήσατο Ἀβραὰμ τιμῆς ἀργυρίου παρὰ τῶν υἱῶν Ἐμμὸρ τοῦ Συχέμ.
and they were brought back to Shechem, and laid in the tomb that Abraham bought for a price in silver from the children of Hamor of Shechem.


The usual word for "to buy" is ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι, which is used of buying real property in
Matthew 13:44b (Byz2005) wrote:καὶ πάντα ὅσα ἔχει πωλεῖ, καὶ ἀγοράζει τὸν ἀγρὸν ἐκεῖνον.
and whatever he has, he sells, and buy that field.


The Seventy has
Joshua 24:32 wrote:καὶ τὰ ὀστᾶ Ιωσηφ ἀνήγαγον οἱ υἱοὶ Ισραηλ ἐξ Αἰγύπτου καὶ κατώρυξαν ἐν Σικιμοις ἐν τῇ μερίδι τοῦ ἀγροῦ οὗ ἐκτήσατο Ιακωβ παρὰ τῶν Αμορραίων τῶν κατοικούντων ἐν Σικιμοις ἀμνάδων ἑκατὸν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτὴν Ιωσηφ ἐν μερίδι
And the children of Israel brought up the bones of Joseph out of Egypt, and buried them in Shechem, in the inheritable tenure (the bounds of which were) the field which Jacob got of the sons of Hamor who dwelt in Shechem for a hundred lambs. And it was given to Joseph as an inheritable tenure.
The verb κτᾶσθαι looks at the acquisition part of the buying and selling rather than the purchasing part of it, so far as I understand it.

My thoughts, as you can see from my translation of the Seventy, are that it could mean that Abraham got an enduring title for tomb in a technical legal sense, but I'm not sure that ὠνήσασθαι has that sense, but it is contextual. Alternatively, that verb could have been chosen to make it sound like a quote from an older text - ὠνήσασθαι being a recognisably older word instead of the contemporary ἀγοράζειν.

BTW.
I am also unsure about the distinction between the common πωλεῖν (πωλῆσαι) "to sell" and the less frequent later form πιπράσκειν (πεπράκεναι, πραθῆναι), except that πιπράσκειν seems to be used in contexts that perhaps involve exchanging assets for liquidity, while πωλεῖν is closer to everyday barter like trading for an agreed value.

[Modern Greek uses πωλώ or πωλούμαι for sell and αγοράζω for buy.]
Stephen Hughes
"If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself."
(Attributed to Albert Einstein)
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Re: Buying - ὠνήσασθαι v. ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι

Postby Louis L Sorenson » April 4th, 2014, 7:58 pm

Here is a list I had created for coins, buying and selling:

Words of Buying, Selling, Trading, Banking, Hiring etc.
τιμή, -ῆς, ἡ Price, selling price
ἀγοράζω to buy opp. πωλῶ
ἀναλίσκω to spend, use up εἰς τι spend upon a thing (M. Aur. Med. 1.4)
c.dat. ἀργύριον ἀ. αὐτῷ spend money paying him
ἀνάλωμα, ατος, τό expenditure, cost τἀναλωμα = τὸ ἀνάλωμα
τὰ ἀναλωμένα (pf.) the monies expended
ἠγοράσθην to be bought (aor.)
ὀψωνῶ (-έω) to buy victuals, fish and dainties, cater
ὀψάριον, -ου, τό dainty, tidbit; fish stuff
τιμή, -ῆς, ἡ price, value
τιμῶμαι (-άω) mid. to set a price or value
πιπράσκω (πέρνημι) engage in vending, sell +acc. of thing; + gen. of price.
πολῶ (-έω) to sell + acc. of thing
πολοῦμαι to be sold + gen. of price
κτῶμαι (-αω) to own
λυτρῶ (-όω) to redeem
τόκος, -ου, ὁ Interest
τράπεζα, -ης, ἡ money-changer’s counter; bank
δάνειον, -ου, τό a loan
δανείζω to loan + acc. of thing
δανείζομαι to borrow ἀπό τινος
δαν(ε)ιστής, -οῦ, ὁ a lender opp. χρεοφειλέτης
ἀποδίδωμι to pay back
μισθοῦμαι (-όομαι) to hire, engage
ἐμπορεύομαι to trade
ἔμπορος, -ου, ὁ merchant
-πώλης, -ου, ὁ seller κεραμο-, σιτο-, βιβλιο-, γαλακτο-, συκο- (uses genitive stem ending in –o)
ἀγορά -ᾶς, ἡ market
ἐργάζομαι work,
τίμιος, -α, -ον precious, valuable
κοινός, -ή, -όν / μάταιος, -α, -ον,
ἄχρηστος, ἀχρεῖος, ἄκαρπος, ἀνάξιος not precious
λογίζομαι to calculate an account
εὐτελής, -ές cheap
ὀφείλημα, -ατος, τό debt
τέλος, -ους, τό tax
τελώνης, -ου, ὁ tax collector
δαπανῶ (-άω) to spend, consume, use up resources
ὀψώνιον, -ου, τό wages, salary
μισθός, -οῦ, ὁ pay, wages; reward
μισθοῦμαι (-όω) mid. to hire + acc. of thing or person

μισθωτός, -οῦ, ὁ a hired hand
δαπάνη, -ης, ἡ cost, expense; expenditure
τελώνιον, -ου, τό tax office
ὠνοῦμαι (-έομαι) mid. to bargain; to buy τὶ παρά τινος someth. from someone w. gen. of price
ὁ ὠνούμενος a buyer
τίνω to pay (a penalty, debt)
μισθός, -οῦ, ὁ
ἐπίχειρον, -ου, τό pl. wages
μισθαποδοσία –ας, ἡ reward; retribution
μισθαποδότης, -ου, ὁ paymaster
μίσθιος / μισθωτός, -οῦ, ὁ hired-hand, day-laborer
ὄψώνιον, -ου, τό wages (to a soldier), compensation
σύμβολον, -ου, τό contract; a receipt
ἀποχή, -ης, ἡ receipt
κτῆμα, -ατος, τό property, possession
κτῶμαι (>κτά-ο) to acquire, possess
ὀφείλω to owe τινὶ τὶ
ὀφειλή, -ῆς, ἡ a debt, obligation
ὀφείλημα, -ατος, τό a debt
ὀφειλέτης, -ου, ὁ a debtor
λυρτῶ (-όω) redeem, buy back
λυτρωτής, -ου, ὁ Redeemer
λύτρον, -ου, τό ransom (usu. pl.); sum paid for redemption
οἴκοθεν from one’s own resources
χρέος, -ους, τό debt, loan
διδόναι χρέα give a loan
λαμβάνειν, get a loan
ἀποδοῦναι pay back a loan




Does this help? The English glosses are simple, and often give a specialized meaning of the lemma.
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Wider context is always good - περιποιῆσαι

Postby Stephen Hughes » April 5th, 2014, 4:09 pm

Does this help? The English glosses are simple, and often give a specialized meaning of the lemma

Of course. A wider context for consideration of a specific question is never not useful.

I notice that you don't include περιποιεῖν, περιποιῆσαι "to acquire" (cf. περιποίησις "possession")in your list as I didn't include it in my discussion last night either. My reason was that firstly, I don't see its meaning so clearly as κτᾶσθαι's and that secondly even if I did, it may not involve the transactional part of acquisition that κτᾶσθαι seems to, but maybe only the state of Christ's having us. What was your reason?
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Re: Buying - ὠνήσασθαι v. ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι

Postby Tony Pope » April 8th, 2014, 5:47 am

Stephen Hughes wrote:Does anyone have any thoughts as to why the older verb ὠνήσασθαι is used in
Acts 7:16 (Byz2005) wrote:καὶ μετετέθησαν εἰς Συχέμ , καὶ ἐτέθησαν ἐν τῷ μνήματι ὃ ὠνήσατο Ἀβραὰμ τιμῆς ἀργυρίου παρὰ τῶν υἱῶν Ἐμμὸρ τοῦ Συχέμ.
and they were brought back to Shechem, and laid in the tomb that Abraham bought for a price in silver from the children of Hamor of Shechem.


The usual word for "to buy" is ἀγοράζειν, ἀγορᾶσαι, which is used of buying real property in
Matthew 13:44b (Byz2005) wrote:καὶ πάντα ὅσα ἔχει πωλεῖ, καὶ ἀγοράζει τὸν ἀγρὸν ἐκεῖνον.
and whatever he has, he sells, and buy that field.


...
My thoughts, as you can see from my translation of the Seventy, are that it could mean that Abraham got an enduring title for tomb in a technical legal sense, but I'm not sure that ὠνήσασθαι has that sense, but it is contextual. Alternatively, that verb could have been chosen to make it sound like a quote from an older text - ὠνήσασθαι being a recognisably older word instead of the contemporary ἀγοράζειν.]

Danker in his Concise Lexicon notes that ὠνεῖσθαι is derived from ὤνος, which is glossed as "the price paid". Could it be that the reason the verb is chosen is that the price paid is mentioned in context?
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τιμή + ὤνος

Postby Stephen Hughes » April 8th, 2014, 10:09 am

If you really want to take a scalpel to τιμή it would be "price asked for" (what the seller thinks it is worth), when a buyer buys the item it becomes "price agreed on", and when a story would be told about the transaction with the buyer as protagonist, it would be "price paid".

In that historical sense from the buyers point of view, there is an obvious synonymity with ὤνος glossed as "the price paid", yes.
Stephen Hughes
"If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself."
(Attributed to Albert Einstein)
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