rough breathing

Byron & Linetta Knutson byronk at
Tue Jan 29 14:06:09 EST 2002

comment about "Breathings."

4. An "initial" P (rho) is generally written with the rough breathing.  When
P (rho) is doubled, in the middle of a word, the first P (rho) has the
smooth breathing, and the second the rough.

He gives as an example AR-RhHTOS  "unspeakable".

(page 390, under Orthography.  Copyright 1888 Charles Scribner's Sons, &
copyright 1916 Ella D. Harper)

A.T. Robertson also has a note worth reading on this double rho breathing
mark on page 225 (e) in his big grammar.

Byron Knutson

Subject: Re: rough breathing
From: "Decker, Rodney" <rdecker at>
Date: Mon, 28 Jan 2002 15:46:51 -0500
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An analytical?! That's the old 1852 work by Wigram. I doubt that it will
serve to support an argument that this was common practice as late as 1967!
But yes, it does use a most curious set of markings on words beginning with
ARR-, some of which have *3* breathing marks and an accent. I'd never
noticed it in the analytical (but then I seldom use it), and I've never seen
it anywhere else. The pre-1968 L&S (9th ed.) did not do this, nor did the
even earlier 8th ed. (1897). Does anyone have any historical info that would
explain this odd orthography?

Rodney J. Decker, Th.D.
Associate Prof/NT, Baptist Bible Seminary
Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, USA
PURL: <>

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