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Re: nasal abbreviations + thatei / ei before indirect speech

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  • akoddsson
    Hailai, ... shown to be native to Gothic by recourse to the use of at before direct speech in Old Norse legal texts. ... Streitberg 356. He just comments
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 12, 2006
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      Hailai,

      > > He dismisses the idea that the construction can be
      shown to be native to Gothic by recourse to the use of 'at' before
      direct speech in Old Norse legal texts.

      > > Incidentally, on the choice of tense in indirect speech, see also
      Streitberg 356. He just comments that the Gothic translation mostly
      imitates the Greek in this respect too. There are supposedly a few
      instances of apparent differences, but he points out that these are
      probably based on some variant Greek text.

      If Gothic did not really use ei in indirect speech, as used by
      Wulfila, then what did it use? Sure, I grant that Wulfila simply
      translated the words of a greek text, but at the same it seems
      unlikely that he would have developed a usage entirely foreign to
      native gothic speakers, who were, after all, his audience. What
      strikes me most here, in the explanation above, is that it suggests no
      alternative usage, presumably more native to Gothic. On the other
      hand, if the use of ei was native to gothic in this function, one
      imagines that Wulfila's audience would have no problems understanding
      him, even if his translations were thought oddly worded and foreign to
      some extent in syntax, word-usage, etc. He was, after all, translating
      concepts and culture entirely foreign to Goths and Gothic. Thus, while
      I certainly suspect that Wulfila stretched the meanings of words, and
      was perhaps somewhat novel syntactically, I do not imagine that he
      developed new usage in indirect speach without any precedent. Am I
      alone in this supposition?

      Now, about the usage of ei, both in indirect speach (see also the
      comments about norse 'at' in legal texts above) and as a relative, not
      much is known comparatively speaking, as the usage is only attested in
      gothic. Now, it so happens that I have researched this topic to some
      extent, as I thought it needed in my investigations on the development
      of germanic pronominal development. Now, all germanic languages have
      different relative usages, as attested. Compare the German use of der,
      OE the, (forms presumably from the demonstrative *the- stem), ON es,
      Go. ei, etc.. Thus, one might logically ask, what was the original
      germanic relative usage, if any? In short, the answer to this question
      is that no one knows. We lack early attestations, Gothic aside, which
      could shed light on this development. Literature on earlies stages of
      the northwest germanic languages, which I have read, generally avoids
      the topic, refers to Gothic, or offers no suggestions here. Clearly,
      few seem to be willing to risk their head here or offer suggestions.
      Now Voyles is one exception. In his reconstruction of the northwest
      germanic pronominal system from about 200AD, he offers the following
      suggestion about the origin of ON es, which is used as an indeclinable
      relative pronoun for all persons, cases and genders in ON - that its
      use as a relative was probably from iz + i (long). Hmmm. Now, I think
      that this makes sense, and I offer the following suggestion on my own:
      if Gothic usage of ei preserves the original PGmc relative usage, as
      perhaps also indirect, then this might account for why these usages
      are so different in all of the other attested languages. Simply put,
      if PGmc *ei were lost independently in the other germanic languages,
      then each language would be forced to develope its own usage with
      regards to the relative, and likely also in indirect speach, if Gothic
      has anything to say here. Now, on the face of it, this appears to be
      exactly what happened. Thus, about the use of 'at' in Norse legal
      texts (see above), I offer the following suggestion: that it developed
      from earlier *that + ei, but survived as 'at' (earlier 'that' is also
      attested in this usage) in later usage. Similarly, the naked use of ei
      as a relative and in indirect speach in Gothic could be an inherited
      feature in Gothic, all other changes aside.

      Comments welcome :)

      Regards,
      Konrad
    • llama_nom
      ... Hails Konrad, I made at least 3 daft mistakes in that message, which I´d better explain. (1) I typed indirect in the subject line when I meant
      Message 2 of 6 , Jan 12, 2006
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        --- In gothic-l@yahoogroups.com, "akoddsson" <konrad_oddsson@y...>
        wrote:
        >
        > If Gothic did not really use ei in indirect speech, as used by
        > Wulfila, then what did it use?


        Hails Konrad,

        I made at least 3 daft mistakes in that message, which I´d better
        explain. (1) I typed "indirect" in the subject line when I
        meant "direct", (2) I carelessly mistook a Greek 1st person plural
        ending for the third person plural (thus complelely failing to
        appreciate the point of Richard's original message!), and (3) I
        somehow got the idea that W. Streitberg was talking about choice of
        tense in subordinate clauses, whereas the paragraph I quoted
        concerned choice of person. Ack. Obviously not my day.


        > Sure, I grant that Wulfila simply
        > translated the words of a greek text, but at the same it seems
        > unlikely that he would have developed a usage entirely foreign to
        > native gothic speakers, who were, after all, his audience. What
        > strikes me most here, in the explanation above, is that it
        suggests no
        > alternative usage, presumably more native to Gothic. On the other
        > hand, if the use of ei was native to gothic in this function, one
        > imagines that Wulfila's audience would have no problems
        understanding
        > him, even if his translations were thought oddly worded and
        foreign to
        > some extent in syntax, word-usage, etc. He was, after all,
        translating
        > concepts and culture entirely foreign to Goths and Gothic. Thus,
        while
        > I certainly suspect that Wulfila stretched the meanings of words,
        and
        > was perhaps somewhat novel syntactically, I do not imagine that he
        > developed new usage in indirect speach without any precedent. Am I
        > alone in this supposition?



        Not at all. In fact it's in these small words and really basic
        components of the language that you can see most independence from
        Greek usage, e.g. 'iþ' regularly comes first in the clause, while
        Greek DE comes second. Looked at as a whole, all the main
        constituents of the sentence may well match the Greek, but on
        virtually every line of the Gothic bible Greek articles are left
        untranslated, presumably because sa, so, þata was just too emphatic
        to use so ubiquitously; sometimes prepositions are inserted,
        occasionally pronouns, often reflexives; and of course my favourite,
        the enclitic -uh, often has no equivalent at all. Conversations are
        another great place to look for subtle differences. The all purpose
        Greek particle DE is replaced by a range of Gothic conjunctions, not
        at random, but according to their own various functions for which
        the Greek offered no model. Relatives show curious patterns of case
        attraction which often contrast with Greek usage. In fact choice of
        case generally, with verbs and prepositions, follows rules quite
        independent of Greek--only in some more abstract or metaphorical or
        rhetorical uses, where native rules offer no guide, is Greek in
        charge. Likewise with the choice of prepositions themselves.

        That said, given the level of immitation that we do find, any exact
        match between Gothic and Greek has to be suspect, unless it´s
        something common to Indo-European languages generally and Germanic
        specifically. Relatives before indirect speech being a case in
        point! But I can well imagine that these instances of a relative
        before DIRECT speech could be due to immitation if they are only
        found at places where the Greek has the same phrasing: They said
        that "we never saw the like". It would be interesting to see these
        Norse equivalents though. Another possibility is that Gothic had
        such usages in some contexts, but that the normal range of contexts
        in which they would appear has been extended in an attempt to match
        the Greek. This is what Streitberg suggests may be the case with
        the accusative and infinitive construction, for example, which is
        common in Old Norse, but even more widely used in Koine Greek.

        Llama Nom
      • akoddsson
        Hails Llama! ... explain. (1) I typed indirect in the subject line when I meant direct , (2) I carelessly mistook a Greek 1st person plural ending for the
        Message 3 of 6 , Jan 13, 2006
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          Hails Llama!

          --- In gothic-l@yahoogroups.com, "llama_nom" <600cell@o...> wrote:
          >
          > --- In gothic-l@yahoogroups.com, "akoddsson" <konrad_oddsson@y...>
          > wrote:
          > >
          > > If Gothic did not really use ei in indirect speech, as used by
          > > Wulfila, then what did it use?
          >
          >
          > Hails Konrad,
          >
          > I made at least 3 daft mistakes in that message, which I´d better
          explain. (1) I typed "indirect" in the subject line when I
          meant "direct", (2) I carelessly mistook a Greek 1st person plural
          ending for the third person plural (thus complelely failing to
          appreciate the point of Richard's original message!), and (3) I
          somehow got the idea that W. Streitberg was talking about choice of
          tense in subordinate clauses, whereas the paragraph I quoted
          concerned choice of person. Ack. Obviously not my day.

          ;) I make so many mistakes english, quotations, and whatnot, and
          fail to mention important points and arguments, when I post online,
          that I just about kick myself when I read what I wrote. My only
          consolation is that we all do this, I think. No problem, though. We
          all enjoy learning more and working on germanic together, like
          brothers together on a ship which we are all learning how to sail.

          > > Sure, I grant that Wulfila simply translated the words of a
          greek text, but at the same it seems unlikely that he would have
          developed a usage entirely foreign to native gothic speakers, who
          were, after all, his audience. What strikes me most here, in the
          explanation above, is that it suggests no alternative usage,
          presumably more native to Gothic. On the other hand, if the use of
          ei was native to gothic in this function, one imagines that
          Wulfila's audience would have no problems understanding him, even if
          his translations were thought oddly worded and foreign to
          some extent in syntax, word-usage, etc. He was, after all,
          translating concepts and culture entirely foreign to Goths and
          Gothic. Thus, while I certainly suspect that Wulfila stretched the
          meanings of words, and was perhaps somewhat novel syntactically, I
          do not imagine that he developed new usage in indirect speach
          without any precedent. Am I alone in this supposition?

          > Not at all. In fact it's in these small words and really basic
          components of the language that you can see most independence from
          Greek usage, e.g. 'iþ' regularly comes first in the clause, while
          Greek DE comes second. Looked at as a whole, all the main
          constituents of the sentence may well match the Greek, but on
          virtually every line of the Gothic bible Greek articles are left
          untranslated, presumably because sa, so, þata was just too emphatic
          to use so ubiquitously; sometimes prepositions are inserted,
          occasionally pronouns, often reflexives; and of course my favourite,
          the enclitic -uh, often has no equivalent at all. Conversations are
          another great place to look for subtle differences. The all purpose
          Greek particle DE is replaced by a range of Gothic conjunctions, not
          at random, but according to their own various functions for which
          the Greek offered no model. Relatives show curious patterns of case
          attraction which often contrast with Greek usage. In fact choice of
          case generally, with verbs and prepositions, follows rules quite
          independent of Greek--only in some more abstract or metaphorical or
          rhetorical uses, where native rules offer no guide, is Greek in
          charge. Likewise with the choice of prepositions themselves.

          Well said.

          > That said, given the level of immitation that we do find, any
          exact match between Gothic and Greek has to be suspect, unless it´s
          something common to Indo-European languages generally and Germanic
          specifically. Relatives before indirect speech being a case in
          point! But I can well imagine that these instances of a relative
          before DIRECT speech could be due to immitation if they are only
          found at places where the Greek has the same phrasing: They said
          that "we never saw the like". It would be interesting to see these
          Norse equivalents though. Another possibility is that Gothic had
          such usages in some contexts, but that the normal range of contexts
          in which they would appear has been extended in an attempt to match
          the Greek. This is what Streitberg suggests may be the case with
          the accusative and infinitive construction, for example, which is
          common in Old Norse, but even more widely used in Koine Greek.

          Then we agree on this, I think.

          Regards,
          Konrad

          > Llama Nom
          >
        • llama_nom
          After all that discussion, and in spite of what we concluded at the time, Streitberg was quite right to print: qiþandans þatei aiw swa ni gasehvun (Mk 2:12)
          Message 4 of 6 , Apr 10, 2006
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            After all that discussion, and in spite of what we concluded at the
            time, Streitberg was quite right to print:

            qiþandans þatei aiw swa ni gasehvun (Mk 2:12)

            ...as opposed to 'gasehvum'. On closer inspection, I see that there
            are in fact different suspension marks used for 'm' and 'n' in the
            Codex Argenteus. The 'm' is distinguished from 'n' by a very slight
            downward hook in the middle of the line. For the 'm' sign, see e.g.
            imma Mk 2:18, imma Mk 6:14, þammei Mk 6:16, þaim Mk 6:21 [
            http://www.ub.uu.se/arv/codex/faksimiledition/jpg_files/311mc6f.html
            ]--see the end of the 6th line down.

            And for the 'n' sign: unhulþons Mk 3:15, standan Mk 3:24,
            saihvandans Mk 4:12, marein Mk 4:39, afhvapnodedun Mk 5:13, iddjedun
            Mk 5:24, jah qeþun Mk 5:31, ufkunþa Mk 5:29, handugeino Mk 6:2--and
            Mk 2:12 [
            http://www.ub.uu.se/arv/codex/faksimiledition/jpg_files/284mc2f.html
            ]--end of line 10.

            There's no doubt that 'n' is intended at Mk 2:12, although the signs
            are similar, and it's easy to imagine that confusion would be
            possible when reading faded letters or a degraded/damaged
            manuscript, or that the two nasal signs might get mixed up
            occasionally by accident. Maybe some such reason is behind the
            apparent divergeance from the Greek text here. Even so, it's
            probably still best to print the text as it appears in the Codex
            Argenteus, since we can't be sure that this is a mistake; and even
            if it is, the mistake might be significant--either for the study of
            Gothic syntax, or in identifying the Greek Vorlage. As ever,
            appologies for misleading everyone! The article I read didn't make
            this m/n difference clear.

            Llama Nom



            --- In gothic-l@yahoogroups.com, "Budelberger, Richard"
            <budelberger.richard@...> wrote:
            >
            > 20 nivôse an CCXIV (le 9 janvier 2006 d. c.-d. c. g.), 23h08.
            >
            > ---- Message d'origine ----
            > De : llama_nom
            > À : Gothic-L
            > Envoyé : lundi 9 janvier 2006 21:58
            > Objet : [gothic-l] nasal abbreviations + þatei / ei before
            indirect speech
            >
            > >> Existe-t-il une différence suffisante entre les signes
            > >> d'abréviation pour distinguer un *m* d'un *n* ?
            > >
            > > Apparently not:
            > >
            > > "The CODEX ARGENTEUS is written in an alphabet devised by
            Wulfila,
            > > though it seems quite likely that some changes have been made in
            the
            > > intervening century and a half. The Gothic alphabet has two
            styles,
            > > one (I will call it style I) using a sigma-like -sign and a nasal
            > > suspension for n only, and the other (I will call it style II)
            uses
            > > the Latin and suspension marks for both n and m (Fairbanks and
            > > Magoun). The CA is written in Style II, and it seems quite likely
            > > that this is a later development, probably in Ostrogothic Italy."
            > > [ http://www.florin.ms/aleph2.html ].
            > >
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