Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Jan 12, 2016 9:38 pm

spin wrote:I think the only certain Hebrew word is the technical term corban which is related to cultus and which any practising Jew, speaking any language in Judea, should know.
That sounds correct to me. Thanks.
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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Wed Jan 13, 2016 1:42 am

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How ancient translators solve the problems

1) Latinisms

A look at Old Latin versions and the Vulgate

Problem of Mark 12:42 - the meaning of „λεπτὰ δύο – lepta dyo”
Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:A problem is that there was no ancient coin with the name „lepton“. We both have researched this. Further I couldn't find an ancient source before Mark which used the word „lepton“ as a description of a coin. There were only texts in which it is used as an adjective with a noun, in the sense of a “small or light or thin” coin. If the word „lepton“ was used as a description of a coin it must be some slang and refer to a small coin of an unspecified kind.
Ben C. Smith wrote:Also, note that Plutarch uses the Greek term λεπτότατον, which is simply the superlative of λεπτός (= thin, slight, small), the adjective of which λεπτόν is the neuter singular. The lepton, as far as I can tell, was not a single denomination of coinage issued by a single monetary authority or mint. Rather:
...
Using an adjective meaning "small" to indicate a currency's lowest denomination of bronze coin is not dissimilar to the modern slang use of "large" to mean $1,000 (as in, "I lost two large on that horse race").
Questions

- How they translated „two smalls“

- How they translated the phrase „ὅ ἐστιν“?

Mark 12:42λεπτὰ δύο (smalls two)ὅ ἐστινκοδράντης
Cod. Bezaeaera duo (coppers/bronzes two)quod estquadrans
Cod. Vercellensisminuta duo (smalls two)quod estquadrans
Vulgateduo minuta (two smalls)quod estquadrans


Problem of Mark 15:16 – the meaning of „αὐλῆς – aulēs“

KJV: into the hall, called Praetorium
NIV: into the palace (that is, the Praetorium)
ASV: within the court, which is the Praetorium

Mark used the word αὐλή (aulé) three times (Mark 14:54, 14:66, 15:16). Mark 14:66 (Peter was below in the „aule“) may indicate the meaning „courtyard“ or „hall“. On the other hand:
iskander wrote:The Praetorium is the residence of the Roman Governor and one would expect this building to be named in its Roman form for a direct understanding of the narrative. The Roman Governor Palace in Cologne seem to retain the original Roman name just as it does in the Greek of Mark.

http://www.museenkoeln.de/archaeologisc ... asp?s=4380
Questions

- How they translated „αὐλή (aulé)“

- How they translated the phrase „ὅ ἐστιν“?

(Cod. Vercellensis: the original final pages after Mk 15:15 have been lost)

Mark 15:16ἔσω τῆς αὐλῆςὅ ἐστινπραιτώριον
Cod. Bezaein atriumquod estpraetorii
Vulgateintro in atriumnot translatedpraetorii


Mark14:54 ἔσω εἰς τὴν αὐλὴν14:66 ἐν τῇ αὐλῇ
Cod. Bezaeusque in atriumin atrium
Cod. Vercellensisusque in atriumin atrio
Vulgateusque intro in atriumin atrio


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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Wed Jan 13, 2016 4:50 am

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2) Semitisms

As shown above the Vulgate didn't translate the phrase “aule -> which is -> Praetorium” (Mark 15:16) in a literal sense, but rewrite it with the phrase “atrium (of the) praetorium”.

This type of translation is also seen in the Peshitta for Mark 5:41, 7:11 and 7:34. Furthermore, the Peshitta corrects the expression of Mark's Semitism.

Mark5:41 "Talitha koum!"7:11 corban7:34 “Ephphatha“
PeshittaTliyt,a) quwmyquwrb'anyEthpatakh


Mark 3:17Boanergeswhich isSons of thunder
PeshittaB'nai-regeshwhich isb'nay ra(ma)
Mark 15:22Golgothawhich isplace of skull
Peshittalg'ag,uwlt'a)which isqarqap,t,a)
Mark 15:34"Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?"which is"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
Peshitta)iyl )iyl lmana) $b,aqt'anywhich is)alahy )alahy lmana) $b,aqt'any
Mark 15:42Preparationwhich isbefore Sabbath
Peshittad'a(ruwb,t'a)which isqd,am $ab't,a)


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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Thu Jan 14, 2016 5:26 am

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1) For further arguing, I'd like to leave Mark 3:17 (Boanerges - Sons of thunder) out of consideration because of the problems discussed below.
MarkTerm AlanguageTerm Blanguage
3:17BoanergesAramaic or Hebrew (or Greek)Sons of thunderGreek

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:A little problem is Mark 3:17. Some scholars (but clearly not the majority) doubt that the word “Boanerges” has a Semitic origin und prefer a explanation with Greek.
Ben C. Smith wrote:Boanerges. I do not buy the explanation involving a Greek source. Both the vowels of boana- and the choice of -rges for "thunder" are things to be explained, but I have to think that the "b" and the "n" do come from the plural of the Aramaic or Hebrew for "son". But I readily admit that this problem is one that has not yet been completely solved.
2) The narrator Mark intended three juxtapositions connected through the phrase "ὅ ἐστιν" to be read as “translations”.

MarkTerm Aὅ ἐστινuse of the word „translated“Term B
5:41"Talitha koum!"which istranslated"Little girl, I say to you, get up!"
7:11corbanwhich isXXXa gift
7:34“Ephphatha“which isXXX“Be opened“
12:42two leptawhich isXXXa quadrans
15:16courtyard (palace?)which isXXXpraetorium
15:22place Golgothawhich istranslatedplace of skull
15:34"Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?"which istranslated"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
15:42Preparation Daywhich isXXXthe day before the Sabbath

From the point of view of Linguistic criticism spin has noted some problems about the correct Aramaic and the correct translation. But imho this does not negate the intended literary function.
spin wrote:
Talitha koum
The translation is the killer: "little girl, I say to you, rise". That insertion in the middle, "I say to you" (soi legw), how can the writer knowing the Semitic original put it in there?
Ephphatha
Again had the writer spoken the original language, he'd have written something like ethphatha, as an imperative (hithpael). Presumably too subtle for a non-native speaker to get right. Of course scholars conjecture an assimilation of the theta to the phi based purely on the appearance in Mk.

I should add the elwi elwi lema sabaxQani to the list as noteworthy of comment. The writer wants us to believe that locals in the vicinity of the crucifixion of Jesus could confuse elwi, presumably Aram )LWHY, for Hebr )LYHW (Eliyahu) or )LYH (Eliyah) or Aram )LY) (Elia, from the Peshitta), ie Elijah. With the prominence of the omega = waw in the word supposed to be confused, that's preposterous, though artful narrative.
imho it's clear, that the literary function is a "translation" here
MarkTerm AlanguageTerm Blanguage
5:41"Talitha koum!"Aramaic"Little girl, I say to you, get up!"Greek
15:22place GolgothaAramaic or Hebrewplace of skullGreek
15:34"Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?"Aramaic"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"Greek

3) The other juxtapositions are not specifically identified as translations. This does not exclude that also in these cases the literary function could be a translation.

Mark used for the hebrew word „corban“ the greek word „δῶρον“ (dóron). This agrees with the general use of „δῶρον“ for „corban“ in the Septuagint and by Josephus. Josephus wrote about the Nazarites (Antiquities, iv. iv. 4)
They dedicate themselves to God as a corban (κορβᾶν), which in the language of the Greeks denotes “a gift.” (δῶρον)
The uttered word “Ephphatha“ is a further saying of Jesus in our list ("Talitha koum!", "Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?"). I see no reason why the literary function should be different here.
Mark 7:34
And looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.”
imho the literary function is also here a translation
MarkTerm AlanguageTerm Blanguage
7:11corbanHebrewa giftGreek
7:34“Ephphatha“Aramaic“Be opened“Greek


Disagreements so far?

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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Ben C. Smith » Thu Jan 14, 2016 7:27 am

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:The other juxtapositions are not specifically identified as translations. This does not exclude that also in these cases the literary function could be a translation.
Agreed. This seems to create a spectrum from translations (like the ones for abba or Bartimaeus) without any marker (ὅ ἐστιν) at all, through translations with that marker, to translations with both that marker and the actual word for "translated as".
Disagreements so far?
None that I can see, though something feels different about the corban issue to me compared to the others. The other translations look like a flat rendering of what a native speaker from Palestine might have said, whether as a word, as a phrase, or as a place name. This one not only is a technical term but also sounds like a technical term, because it comes in a (hypothetical) sentence that is in Greek, but the word itself is in Aramaic: "What you would have gained from me is [Greek] corban [Hebrew]." This makes it come across to me as a special or technical term (rather than just a native word) even on the lips of the native speaker.

I have no idea whether this observation is or will be of any significance, but I wanted to get it on the record.

Ben.
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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Kunigunde Kreuzerin » Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:38 am

Ben C. Smith wrote:None that I can see, though something feels different about the corban issue to me compared to the others. The other translations look like a flat rendering of what a native speaker from Palestine might have said, whether as a word, as a phrase, or as a place name. This one not only is a technical term but also sounds like a technical term, because it comes in a (hypothetical) sentence that is in Greek, but the word itself is in Aramaic: "What you would have gained from me is [Greek] corban [Hebrew]." This makes it come across to me as a special or technical term (rather than just a native word) even on the lips of the native speaker.

I have no idea whether this observation is or will be of any significance, but I wanted to get it on the record.
Agreed. That is interesting.

A question. Apparently all scholars agree that Josephus (Ant 16: 6: 2) is evidence that the word παρασκευή is a fixed expression for the day before the Sabbath.
ἐν σάββασιν ἢ τῇ πρὸ αὐτῆς παρασκευῇ ἀπὸ ὥρας ἐνάτης
I am not sure. I think there's a possibility that it refers just to the time of activity of the preparation.

But I can not really judge this. What would you think?

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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by iskander » Fri Jan 15, 2016 12:06 pm

Someone has written , Shabbat is an island of time. There is a great deal of planning and preparation that goes into creating an island of time. For the well organised that means starting on Wednesdays to avoid last minute madness.

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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Secret Alias » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:16 pm

I don't know but to me the passage in Mark always looked like an Aramaism cmp the Mishnah "let these plants be korban"

https://books.google.com/books?id=jqdTv ... 22&f=false

The underlying idea (cf. the Talmud) has to do with consecration. FWIW I can't see how this isn't viewed as an Aramaism.
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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Ben C. Smith » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:24 pm

Kunigunde Kreuzerin wrote:A question. Apparently all scholars agree that Josephus (Ant 16: 6: 2) is evidence that the word παρασκευή is a fixed expression for the day before the Sabbath.
ἐν σάββασιν ἢ τῇ πρὸ αὐτῆς παρασκευῇ ἀπὸ ὥρας ἐνάτης
I am not sure. I think there's a possibility that it refers just to the time of activity of the preparation.

But I can not really judge this. What would you think?
Well, this is what I have so far.... The relevant portion of the BAGD entry goes as follows (underlining mine):

παρασκευή, ῆς, ἡ (s. prec. entry; trag., Hdt.+; Ath. 15, 2) prim. sense ‘preparation’ (Hdt. 9, 82 and Polyaenus 7, 21, 6 τοῦ δείπνου; 7, 27, 3 πολέμου), in our lit. only of a definite day, as the day of preparation for a festival; acc. to Israel’s usage (in this sense only in late pap, s. New Docs 3, 80; Jos., Ant. 16, 163; Synes., Ep. 4 p. 161d) it was Friday, on which day everything had to be prepared for the Sabbath, when no work was permitted....

I have tracked down the underlined sources.

1. "New Docs 3, 80" = G. H. R. Horsley, New Documents Illustrating Early Christianity, entry 58 (παρασκευή), page 80:

At New Docs 1977, 67, a possible example was noted of an abbreviation for παρασκευή meaning 'Friday'. A more certain instance is afforded by IGCB 19 (Corinth, VI), a fragmentary Christian epitaph which concludes by providing the date when the deceased died (presumably): μη(νὶ) Σεπ[τεμβρίῳ] ἡμέρα | παρα[σκευή] (Il. 8-9, Bees' reading). Though the final word is partly restored, it can hardly be in doubt in such a dating context. But it should be noted that ἡμέρα cannot be read in Bees' photo of the stone: should the text perhaps read [ἡμέρᾳ] | παρα[σκευῆς]? At Il. 4-6 on the stone the wording λόγ(ον) δώση τῷ κ(υρίο)υ (sic) alludes to Rom. 14.12.

A phrase like "day of Preparation" can hardly negate your instinct that the noun can at least sometimes mean the activity occurring before the Sabbath, not necessarily the name of the day itself, since the presence of the term "day of" automatically turns whatever follows into a makeshift title (much as, for modern Christians, Sunday is the "day of rest").

Notice that this entry refers to the previous year's edition of New Documents Illustrating Early Christianity, entry 67 (παρασκευή), page 93:

Although this noun is employed in the NT, Jewish writers and ECL to refer to Friday as a specifically Jewish and Jewish Christian usage, no documentary occurrences of the word with this meaning have been noticed hitherto. No examples occur in either CIJ or CPJ; nor do WB and Spoglio provide any help. SEG 728 is a short inscription in a cave from Benler in Ionia (n.d., ed. pr.) whose wording runs: Μητρᾶς (vac.) τῇ ἀγα- | θῇ ΠΑΡΑ | ΣΚΗ

Ed. pr. raises the possibility - it is no more than that - that the capitalized letters may be an abbreviation for παρασκευή and mean 'Friday'.

Not much help there; and the "n.d." abbreviation stands, I think, for "no date", so we cannot even place this inscription in a chronological context, apparently.

2. "Jos., Ant. 16, 163" = Josephus, Antiquities 16.6.2 §162-163, which of course you already brought to light and I reproduce here only for convenience:

Caesar Augustus, high priest and tribune of the people, ordains thus: Since the nation of the Jews hath been found grateful to the Roman people, not only at this time, but in time past also, and chiefly Hyrcanus the high priest, under my father Caesar the emperor, it seemed good to me and my counselors, according to the sentence and oath of the people of Rome, that the Jews have liberty to make use of their own customs, according to the law of their forefathers, as they made use of them under Hyrcanus the high priest of the Almighty God; and that their sacred money be not touched, but be sent to Jerusalem, and that it be committed to the care of the receivers at Jerusalem; and that they be not obliged to go before any judge on the sabbath day, nor on the day of the preparation to it [ἐν σάββασιν ἢ τῇ πρὸ αὐτῆς παρασκευῇ], after the ninth hour.

3. "Synes., Ep. 4 p. 161d" = Synesius, Epistle 4:

[11] Well, we were perforce satisfied with his explanation so long as daylight lasted and dangers were not imminent, but these failed not to return with the approach of night, for as the hours passed, the seas increased continually in volume. Now it so happened that this was the day on which the Jews make what they term the "Preparation" [ἡμέρα μὲν ἦν ἥντινα ἄγουσιν οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι παρασκευήν], and they reckon the night, together with the day following this, as a time during which it is not lawful to work with one's hands. They keep this day holy and apart from the others, and they pass it in rest from labor of all kinds.

Synesius is pretty late (overlapping century IV and V), so of course this may not reflect common usage from century I, but this reference is the most interesting so far, I think, when it comes to evaluating your idea. This instance, despite BDAG using it in order to support the noun as the name of a day of the week, seems to denote the actual activity: "the day on which the Jews make preparation."

I do not (yet) know whether this activity, preparation (for the Sabbath), is ever associated with any day other than Friday, however. But, at any rate, there are some references to chew on.

Ben.
Last edited by Ben C. Smith on Mon Feb 15, 2016 6:44 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Mark's „ὅ ἐστιν“

Post by Secret Alias » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:30 pm

The context perfectly fits Abraham Heschel's thesis about Christianity deriving its origins from those (Samaritans, Sadducees etc) who held to the tradition that only the ten commandments came from heaven. There is the trickiness of course of the line "Whoever reviles father and mother must die" which I presume wasn't there originally or was placed to throw us off the sent but notice:
"You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.” And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’ ... But you (the Pharisees who hold to oral law) say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God)— then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
The issue at hand is whether or not the oral law is of greater authority than the ten commandments. Interestingly the decision of (much) later rabbis was that where Gemara and Torah conflict Gemara is of higher authority. This is unbelievable to the Samaritans, Karaites, Sadducees and is reflected in the argument of the Qumran documents.
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