[B-Greek] KAGW

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
Thu Jul 17 06:25:15 EDT 2003

At 10:07 PM -0700 7/16/03, farley wrote:
>Dear Everyone: (I trust I am posting this one to the list, and not to any
>one person specifically)--
>    In Lk. 11:9 (as elsewhere in the Gospels), it reads KAGW UMIN LEGW.
>Please remind me again about the force of this KAGW--I have it in mind
>that it is an abbreviation for KAI EGW, and that the pronoun involved is
>to be read as an emphatic.  Am I correct (or just forgetting everyone I
>ever knew in school)?  Is KAGW ever read as an emphatic?  Sorry for asking
>such an elementary question--hopefully my Greek professor from college is
>on vacation now and not reading this list!
> Yours faithfully,
>    Lawrence Farley, Surrey, B.C.

Just a brief addition to Jason Hare's affirmation. Technically speaking,
KAGW is not an "abbreviation" but an instance of what is called CRASIS
(from KERANNUMI, "mix"): it is different from ELISION, where the final
vowel of one word is suppressed before an initial vowel; crasis is the
fusion of the two vowel sounds and may even involve contraction as, e.g.,
TOUMON ONOMA for TO EMON ONOMA ("my name"). KAGW for KAI EGW is indeed
emphatic, especially as the personal pronoun itself is already emphatic and
KAI used in the adverbial sense of "even" or "also" emphatically includes
the "I" highlighted, so that the force of KAGW is "not just others, but I
myself as well!"

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
1989 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
WWW: http://www.ioa.com/~cwconrad/

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