Tense of TETAGMENOI in Acts 13:48

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
Thu Jul 1 06:49:38 EDT 1999

At 10:23 PM -0500 6/30/99, James S. Murray wrote:
>Greetings everyone:
>I would appreciate some help in understanding the use of verb tense in
>dependent clauses.  The text reads;  ...KAI EPISTEUSAN OSOI HSAN
>TETAGMENOI EIS ZWHN AIWNION.  I take the dependent clause as an
>adverbial relative clause, either of condition or possibly comparison
>(yes?).  Is the use of the periphastic pluperfect relative to the main
>verb, implying the action occurred prior to the action of the main verb,
>or is this only true with participles (non-periphrastic, that is)?  I'm
>just interested in the grammar, please.

I think the main thing to be said about the verb form TETAGMENOI HSAN is
that one regularly finds ONLY the periphrastic in the third plural both in
the perfect passive and in the pluperfect passive. The older inflected
forms TETACATO and TETACATAI are found in Homer, perhaps here and there
elsewhere in earlier Greek: reduplicated stem TETAC + NTAI/NTO with typical
shift of the consonantal N to the vowel A between two consonants. So you
wouldn't see a non-periphrastic form in Koine--and yes, I think the time is
relative to the time of the main verb, i.e., prior.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/

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