Re: [GTh] Layton's Translation of CWK
- In an earlier note on this thread, I wrote:
you> Layton translates L3.1 in parte as "If those who lead
Greek> say to you..." but he has the following footnote: "The> fragment (P.Oxy. 654) instead has 'attract'."Obviously, the Greek fragment has a Greek word, not the Englishword 'attract'. The latter is simply the meaning that Layton attachesto the Greek word. We've discussed the fact that this isn't theprimary meaning of the word, and anyway that Layton uses itinconsistently, but now Tim Staker has drawn my attention to aself-proclaimed mongrel translation that shows the consequencesof Layton's mistaken footnote:There are actually two translations of L3 on this webpage. The firstis simply Lambdin's NHL translation, so we'll ignore that one. Thesecond (of the Greek fragments) is said to be "... a combination ofthranslations [sic] by B.P. Grenfell and A.S. Hunt and Bentley Layton."Interestingly, however, the word used in 3.1 is 'attract', which isn't usedby either Grenfell/Hunt or Layton! It appears in Layton's footnote,but not in his translation (see above). As for Grenfell/Hunt, they usethe word 'draw'. (See below, p.15):(Thanks to Mark Goodacre for this link.)Indeed, the Grenfell/Hunt translation is so different from what's on thesacred.texts site, that it's fairly obvious that Craig Schenk (whoever he is)must have taken the bulk of his translation from Layton, with little ifanything from Grenfell/Hunt.Cheers,Mike Grondin
- At 09:50 PM 8/3/2012, Mike Grondin wrote:
(in L3 and L34).
... Among the sayings he (Martin) quoted was L114. What caught my attention was
the word 'attract' in "I am going to attract her to make her male."
Curious about that, I went to see how Layton had translated the two
other occurrences of the Coptic word swk
Layton translates L3.1 in parte as "If those who lead you say to you..."
but he has the following footnote: "The Greek fragment (P.Oxy. 654)
instead has 'attract'." Well, OK, but what does he do with that info?
Nothing in L3.1, but he uses 'attract' in L114.2 when there isn't any
POxy data to compare! In other words, where there's a POxy word
that he thinks means 'attract' (L3.1), he doesn't translate it that way,
but when there's no POxy evidence (L114.2), he does! There is again
no POxy evidence for L34, but there he uses the word 'lead' ("If a blind
person leads a blind person ..."), instead of 'attract'. It would seem, then,
that consistency would demand that L114.2 be translated as 'lead' as well,
especially as 'attract' has connotations that might easily be confusing.
Does the Greek word in question actually mean 'attract'? Well, of course
any word has a range of meanings, but in Andrew Bernhard's interlinear
of the Greek fragments, the word in question (hELKONTES) is translated
as 'pulling'. My linguistic sensitivities don't detect much difference
between 'pull' and 'lead' -- or say 'draw', which is also sometimes used.
But I do sense that the word 'attract' suggests a somewhat different dynamic
between the two people involved than these other words do - perhaps a more
active role for the one person and less active for the other? At any rate, such
are the considerations that make me less than keen on 'attract' in L114.2
(If anyone has some thoughts on the Greek word involved, come on in!)
I'm interested in the semantic range of the words involved, and what the author is trying to express. I think that perhaps "attract" is on target, but too weak for what the author intends, which may be that the "attraction" is more compelling, persuasive, or seductive? Or is there another Greek word for those things? The sense of your quote sounds to me like an attempt to persuade or seduce, and "to make her male" does not sound like a voluntary association.
Part of the issue here is agency. For example, "pull" implies that the object of attraction is not inert, but exerting some force on the follower. "Lead" is somewhat balanced in this regard, involving interaction by leader and follower. I might find an advertisement "attractive," but that doesn't mean that I'm going to buy what they're selling.
Another example: Decades ago, my parents were considering joining a Baptist church with a preacher who some family members knew. But during the service, there was an altar call. The preacher was obviously trying to "lead," and some members found the call "attractive," because they answered it. However, my parents didn't like it, and never went back to that church.
Northern Arizona University