[B-Greek] Paul writing in Latin or Hebrew/Aramaic?

Carl Conrad cwconrad2 at mac.com
Mon Aug 23 12:59:05 EDT 2010


On Aug 23, 2010, at 12:37 PM, Ken Penner wrote:

> Consider some other first-century documents from/to Rome:
> 
> Josephus wrote for the Flavian Romans in Greek.
> Clement of Rome wrote in Greek, as was already mentioned in this thread.
> The Shepherd of Hermas wrote in Greek at Rome (though a Latin translation was made soon afterward, and has survived more completely than the Greek).
> 
> Other Romans wrote in Greek. Hippolytus springs immediately to mind.

I would have to say that the most eminent of Romans who wrote in Greek
was the emperor Aurelius Antoninus, better known as Marcus Aurelius. The
so-called "Meditations" have, I think, been entitled by some, PROS hEAUTON.
At any rate, he does address himself in them, which would suggest that he 
thought of Greek as his "native" language. And while the first scroll of this
work recounts his spiritual heritage from his parents and forebears, the second
begins with the wonderful admonition, "Tell yourself first thing every morning
that you are going to meet all sorts of obnoxious people this day, and that they
are every one of them made of the very same stuff as am I myself."

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

> 
> On 10-08-22 11:29 PM, "David McKay" <davidmckay52 at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> I've just read this assertion on another list and am interested in your
> comments, please:
> 
> "And no, Greek was not the language of the Romans.  They spoke Latin.  Paul
> would have written to Rome either in one of his better languages
> (Hebrew/Aramaic) or theirs (Latin), but there's little logic behind the idea
> he would have written to them in Greek."
> 
> David McKay








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