[b-hebrew] A Greek Language Question
George F. Somsel
gfsomsel at juno.com
Thu Aug 5 15:13:01 EDT 2004
On Thu, 5 Aug 2004 13:38:35 EDT MarianneLuban at aol.com writes:
> I hope some people here are more knowledgeable in Greek than I am
> because I
> want to make certain of some passages from the Greek text of
> Josephus. It has
> to do with his reference to a certain "Amenophis", a wiseman,
> accepted to be a well-documented actual person from AE, Amenhotep
> son of Hapu.
> When Josephus first mentions the wiseman he writes, "Amenophis
> patros de
> Paapios" and then later
> "Amenophis ton Paapios", both translated as "Amenophis son of
> Paapis. I know
> "patros" means "father", but I can't understand the presence of "de"
> in the
> phrase. Also, I think "ton" can mean "the son of" but also just
> plain "of".
> Marianne Luban
I have been unable to locate the passage you reference since instances of
the name Amenhotep in Josephus (apparently Contra Apion) do not seem to
have PATROS in near proximity.
PATROS is the genitive of PATHR. The genitive, when used in regard to
familial relationships frequently indicates "son of" or "descendent of."
E.g. in Jn 21.15 we read
LEGEI TWi SIMWNI PETRWi hO IHSOUS SIMWN IWANNOU . . .
and Jesus said to Simon Peter "Simon, son of John . . ."
In Mt 4.21 we see a somewhat different situation.
EIDEN ALLOUS DUO ADELFOUS, IAKWBON TON TOU ZEBEDAIOU KAI IWANNHN TON
ADELFON AUTOU, EN TWi PLOIWi META ZEBEDAIOU TOU PATROS AUTWN
He saw two other brother, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother,
in the boat with Zebedee their father
Here we see TON TOU ZEBEDAIOU which is an accusative linking this to
IAKWBON which is in the accusative, but this is followed by TOU ZEBEDAIOU
which indicates the relationship "James [son] of Zebedee." Note the
phrase META ZEBEDAIOU TOU PATROS AUTWN. Here Zebedee is in the genitive
due to the preposition META and PATROS (likewise a genitive) agrees with
the case of Zebedee of which it might be considered an appositive. If
you have indeed found a case of PATROS in Josephus, I would expect it to
have a similar relationship to a preposition.
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