STHRIXAI - 1 Thes 3:13

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
Wed Nov 14 08:06:54 EST 2001


At 3:26 PM -0600 11/12/01, Kevin Buchs wrote:
>Would some kind list member help me understand the parsing of the verb
>STHRIXAI in 1 Thes 3:13.  By my analysis, it had to be aorist optative 3s
>active because of the accent on the penultima is not a circumflex.  I find
>that aorist active infinitive is demanded by the context, however.  I would
>love to learn a methodology for handling these situations.  Am I using a
>microscope when I ought to use a telescope?

This COULD indeed be an aorist optative 3d sg.--and there is one in 2 Thess
2:17 spelled identically with this form:

PARAKALESAI hUMWN TAS KARDIAS KAI STHRIXAi EN PANTI ERGWi KAI LOGWi AGAQWi
"May he comfort your hearts and make you steadfast in every good deed and
word."

Here however in 3;13

text: EIS TO STHRIXAI hUMWN TAS KARDIAS AMEMPTOUS EN AGAQWSUNHi ...

we have an aorist active infinitive. The present tense of this verb is
STHRIZW; verbs in -IZW are normally formed from roots in either -D- or -G-,
and curiously there's sufficient confusion among users that we find aorist
forms in the GNT with stems in STHRIS(A) as if from STHRID +S(A) (Lk 9:51
ESTHRISEN, 22:32 STHRISON, and Rev. 3:2 STHRISON) as well as in STHRIX(A)
from STHRIG + S(A) (Lk 16:26, Rom 1:11, 16:25, Jas 5:8, 1Pet 5:10, 2 Pet
1:12 in addition to the forms already noted).

As for the accentuation, I think that this aorist infinitive is paroxytone
because the -I- is a short vowel rather than a long vowel.

Looks to me like your parsing was thrown off by the accentuation rather
than anything else; you rightly recognized that an infinitive was called
for in the context; unfortunately the factor of accent can be quite arcane;
it's true that most penultimate vowels in aorist infinitives are long and
therefore most aorist active infinitives are properispomenon, but it ain't
so about all of them.


>Also, I often wonder about the possibilities of prepositional phrases
>modifying a far verb rather than a near one.  In this verse, could it be
>possible that the META phrase modifies STHRIXAI (far) rather than PAROUSIA
>(near), or is it a well established rule that prepositions always modify the
>nearest modifiable verb, when they are adverbial?

No, that really is impossible. The phrase (META PANTWN TWN hAGIWN AUTOU) is
a simple unit with hAGIWN as the gen. noun governed by the preposition and
the regular forms of "all" with the requisite article preceding it.



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