John 2:17 and KATAFAGETAI

Manolis Nikolaou aei_didaskomenos at
Tue Mar 19 17:09:34 EST 2002

> This lends further support to the idea that the AI diphthong at the time
> of this papyrus manuscript was pronounced as it is in Modern Greek, i.e.,
> as a short "e," rather than the Erasmian long "i" as in "aisle."
> Especially if, as you say, it's "on almost every page."
> > Eric S. Weiss wrote:
> > > Where does the KATAFAGETE of P66 come from? Is it a recognized error?
> > 
> > Yes. It is a VERY common error, probably because E - AI sounded very similar
> > in that time. You will find this on almost every page. Have a look in
> > Swanson "NT manuscripts". He notes the spelling errors in a footnotes
> > section. Quite interesting read! :-)
> > 
> > Best wishes
> >     Wieland
> >       <><
> > ---------------
> > Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany
> > mailto:willker at
> >

Not only was the pronunciation of the KOINH quite different from the
erasmian pronunciation, but there is enough evidence that noticeable
changes in the way Greeks spoke had appeared in the classic era already.
Many spelling *mistakes* (ARIS, AQINA, DIMOSQENIS etc) occur even in
inscriptions of the fifth century B.C., which makes clear that such
phonological changes were not due solely to the great expansion of Greek
during the Alexandrian era.

Manolis Nikolaou
Athens, Greece 

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