[B-Greek] The object of METATIQEMAI APO (was "Etc., etc., without apologies to David Letterman")

Iver Larsen iver_larsen at sil.org
Sat Jun 13 07:23:00 EDT 2009

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Carl Conrad" <cwconrad2 at mac.com>
To: "Mark Lightman" <lightmanmark at yahoo.com>
Cc: "B Greek" <b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: 12. juni 2009 23:35
Subject: [B-Greek] The object of METATIQEMAI APO (was "Etc., etc., without 
apologies to David Letterman")

> On Jun 12, 2009, at 1:32 PM, Mark Lightman wrote:
>> --- On Wed, 6/10/09, George F Somsel <gfsomsel at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> <5.   What does the object of METATIQHMI in the middle,
>>  the end, the beginning or the active or passive have to do
>>  with the price of eggs in Outer Mongolia?>
>> KALESANTOS is the object of METATIQHMAI.  If you think
>> the subject of KALESANTOS is a thing (gospel) not a person
>> (God,) you would do well to see how often METATIQHMAI APO
>> plus the gen takes a thing, how often a person.  Again, all the
>> examples I saw were things.  Since your theory is interesting on
>> the one hand and utterly devoid of support on the other hand, I
>> would think it would be worth it for you to look this up.  I agree
>> that all things being equal, in "APO X EIS Y," if Y is a thing, and
>> X is unknown,
>> we could assume that X is a thing.  But it's your crack pot theory.
>> You should do the work.  Maybe you could get to it after you finish
>> all 26 volumes of the Warren Report.  :)
> The text under discussion, lest it be forgotten, is Gal. 1:6:
> Θαυμάζω ὅτι οὕτως ταχέως
> μετατίθεσθε ἀπὸ τοῦ καλέσαντος
> ὑμᾶς ἐν χάριτι [Χριστοῦ] εἰς ἕτερον
> εὐαγγέλιον, ...
> It would appear that questionable syntactic analysis is infectious.
> METATIQEMAI is the middle of METATIQHMI. Ordinarily METATIQEMAI is
> understood as an intransitive verb with the sense "change allegiance."
> BDAG s.v. METATIQHMI 3 seems to understand it thus. It construes
> regularly with an APO + genitive of the person(s) or thing(s) from
> which one switches allegiance. It does seem strange, however, to speak
> of the object of the preposition APO as the object of METATIQESQE in
> Gal 1:6.

Semantically speaking, "put" and "give" are the basic trivalent verbs. The full 
set of arguments for "put" is Agent, Patient and Location. For METATIQHMI the 
META indicates a shift from one location, position or allegiance to another. The 
MP form in Gal 1:6 could be understood as middle, in which case the Agent and 
Patient are co-referential. I think it is more likely to be passive here, i.e. 
Agent and Patient are not co-referential, because Paul seems to credit the false 
teachers with the activity of turning the Galatians from the true gospel to a 
different "gospel". In that case, these teachers are the implicit agents, the 
patient (subject) is "you-plural" expressed by the verb ending. There is no 
grammatical object. The allegiance they are being moved from is "the one who 
called you to live in grace" (I consider CRISTOU to be a misunderstood 
addition). The new allegiance is to the "different gospel" (and to the people 
who brought it).

Iver Larsen 

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