Translation Studies

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at
Fri Sep 7 08:33:33 EDT 2001

At 9:16 AM +0000 9/7/01, jwest at wrote:
>> Dear Jim:
>> Where does it say that Jesus was illiterate? Lk 4 is quite clear that he was
>> able to read.
>this does have to do with greek so i'm going to say on list what i said in
>private to a number of folk.
>lk 4 says nothing of the sort that is generally claimed for it.  in lk
>jesus is
>handed a scroll opened to a text and then he procedes to *recite* the text.
>the verb *anaginwskw* properly means *recite* rather than *read*.  why?
>because literally the verb is a compound with a preposition.  the preposition
>*ana* means *again* or *down*.  now, if we take this seriously it means *to
>know again, to know down* which is much closer in meaning to the english word
>*recite* than *read*.
>that jesus *recited* is quite a different thing than that he *read*.

Once again, Jim offers us a novel perspective on Greek lexicology! Vs. 17
tells us that Jesus unrolled the scroll and found the place where the text
in question stood written. Why he would do that before reciting from memory
might raise an eyebrow or two. There are 32 instances of the verb
ANAGINWSKW in the GNT. Here's a couple that will illustrate what I assume
is Lucan usage: In Acts 8:30ff. Philip hears an Ethiopian eunuch
ANAGINWSKONTOS; in this instance "reading aloud" from a text of Isaiah
that, if he is reciting at memory, he nevertheless doesn't understand. In
Acts 15:30 we are told that the letter from the Jerusalem church was given
to the congregation at Antioch, then in 31 ANAGNONTES DE ECARHSAN EPI THi
PARAKLHSEI. This is hardly a matter of reciting a memorized text.

I suggest that those interested consult BDAG, L&N, LJS, etc.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at OR cwconrad at

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