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Re: The Hebrew Jesus, tote

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  • Jim Deardorff
    ... Randall, Would the following scenario agree with your conclusions on TOTE? If Matthew had first been written in Aramaic, it would contain plenty of then s
    Message 1 of 40 , Dec 1, 1998
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      At 08:46 AM 12/1/98 -0500, yochanan bitan wrote:
      >Jack Kilmon wrote:
      >>My firstquestion is the reasoning behind why a narrative tote is absolute
      >as an
      >>Aramaic marker and how that differs from tote in "sayings," the sayings
      >>also being short narratives (the totes in Mark, Luke & John seem to be
      >>mainly in sayings)
      >Ancient Hebrew and Aramaic had a cognate word in az, azay 'then (Hb)',
      >'adhay' 'then (Aram)'. It was a temporal adverb Hebrew could use it in
      >prophecy and sayings in various word orders and very rarely in
      >past-narrative in initial position. Aramaic was probably similar to hebrew
      >in the early first temple period, though we simply don't have anywhere near
      >the necessary texts for comparison.
      >In the late assyro-babylonian period and Persian period Aramaic drastically
      >changed its word order and introduced various adverbial narrative
      >conjunctions as a way of presenting/packaging/maintaining narrative flow
      >when word order could no longer handle this. while several words were tried
      >out ('aHar 'afterwards', qravta 'next'), it was edayin 'then (Aramaic
      >descendant of adhay)' and bedayin 'so then' that won the day.
      >narrative edayin refers to this use of edayin at the beginning of a clause
      >in the same functional environment where hebrew would simply use a
      >vayyiqtol (sequential/thematic prefix tense). these became standard
      >narrative markers in aramaic even after the persian period, as is evidenced
      >by all of our qumran aramaic narratives and early rabbinic texts like the
      >antiochus scroll. (in the early christian centuries this word merged with
      >greek de 'and' and produced the postpositive den 'and' of syriac general
      >style. the later targums, as translations from hebrew, do not have this
      >word and this narrative style dropped out of use.)
      >so why is narrative tote absolute? because hebrew, aramaic and greek all
      >have a temporal adverb 'then' in common use (thus, there is no surprise for
      >tote/az/edayin to occur within sayings or any discourse where someone wants
      >to say 'at that time').
      >but ONLY aramaic uses it as a normal narrative conjunction in a past tense
      >narrative. as conjunctions, these aramaic narrative conjunctions slip into
      >greek translation 'unconsciously' and reveal the presence of an underlying
      >aramaic substratum. naturally, a greek document that has been stylistically
      >restructured (like josephus' War or perhaps 2macc) could remove edayin
      >traces (if they were there in the first place). the test only works where
      >the greek text has allowed semitic style to remain at least partially. in
      >these cases narrative tote will distinguish hebrew from aramaic. our
      >gospels certainly fit that category since they obviously have not been
      >pretentiously restructured for 'pure' greek style.
      >mark uses tote. he has no problem with the word. but he has zero
      >occurrances in the narrative framework as a narrative conjunction. mark's
      >semitic background behind his greek sources must be assumed to be hebrew.
      >not so surprising for us in this post-qumran generation.
      >the narrative of luke has 2 examples of a potential narrative conjunction,
      >such a rare frequency that he is within stylistic parameters of both greek
      >and hebrew, but not aramaic.
      >in addition, luke has a parable, luke 14, with a narrative tote, which
      >hints at aramaic and might mean that he either had access to another source
      >with a separate pedigree or perhaps the hebrew source behind his greek
      >source also had occasional access to an aramaic tradition. unfortunately,
      >one example is not enough to be statistically usuable. since both greek and
      >hebrew occasionally have 'then' at the beginning of a sentence, this one
      >example could be such a case.
      >again for luke, we must assume predominant hebrew sources behind his greek
      >(some of the above was presented at SBL Aramaic section, SF '97, and is
      >also buried in the literature in Maarav (Segert festschrift) '90
      >"edayin-tote anatomy of a semitism in jewish greek", and Jer.Persp. '91
      >"matthew's aramaic glue")
      >sei gesund


      Would the following scenario agree with your conclusions on TOTE? If Matthew
      had first been written in Aramaic, it would contain plenty of "then"s that
      could be translated into TOTEs.

      Then if Mark were constructed mainly out of Aramaic Matthew, it would
      contain them in the discourses. But if its writer identified himself with
      the narrator, when writing down the narration within his gospel, he could
      well have avoided this use of TOTE there, preferring a more ordinary Greek
      use. To have done so, he need not have been a Hebrew, however, but could
      have been a gentile who had learned Hebrew and Aramaic.

      Similarly with the writer of Luke, who was even less inclined to perpetuate
      a TOTE Aramaism within his gospel.

      The later translator of Aramaic Matthew into Greek, however, understandably
      did not mind his gospel maintaining more Aramaisms, and so translated these
      Aramaic "then"s as TOTEs.

      Jim Deardorff
      Corvallis, Oregon
      E-mail: deardorj@...
      Home page: http://www.proaxis.com/~deardorj/index.htm
    • Brian E. Wilson
      ... Mark Goodacre commented - ... I would suggest that this continuum is observable in a synopsis without positing the Farrer Hypothesis. The continuum is
      Message 40 of 40 , Dec 20, 1998
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        Stephen Carlson wrote:
        >My understanding of the MAs for the FH (I am sure Mark G. will correct
        >me if I'm wrong) is that the FH does not consider the MAs to be a
        >distinct category in its synoptic source theory but merely a point on
        >the sliding of scale of Luke's use of Matthew in preference to Mark...
        Mark Goodacre commented -
        >Absolutely -- this is a good summary...There is thus a
        >triple trad. with no MAs
        > triple trad. with some MAs
        > triple trad. with lots of important MAs
        > debatable Mark-Q overlap (e.g. baptism)
        > certain Mark-Q overlap (e.g. Temptation)
        > Q with tinges of Mark
        > Pure double tradition
        I would suggest that this continuum is observable in a synopsis without
        positing the Farrer Hypothesis. The continuum is data, rather than
        hypothesis (providing "Q" means simply "double tradition", of course.)
        Some time ago, I wrote to this List pointing out that since there is no
        easy definition of "Q" material, then neither is there any easy
        definition of the minor agreements. For, I asked, "where do the minor
        agreements end and the double tradition begin?" Both are agreements of
        Matthew and Luke against Mark. If you cannot define one, and therefore
        do not know where its material ends, then you do not know where the
        other's material begins, and so cannot define that either.

        If we go all through Huck's "Synopsis" and count the number of words of
        agreement of Matthew and Luke against Mark in each pericope in the
        double tradition and the triple tradition, we can then plot a histogram
        of the bands of frequencies observed. I did this four years ago. The
        result is that the histogram follows one "smooth" curve. There is no
        sudden change in the curve to indicate a transition from triple
        tradition pericopes with minor agreements to pericopes with double
        tradition material. The continuum is observable fact, whatever synoptic
        hypothesis we may hold.

        The continuum is a difficulty for the Two Document Hypothesis, since on
        that hypothesis the minor agreements are a distinct phenomenon from "Q"
        material, the minor agreements and the double tradition supposedly
        having separate causes. We should therefore should expect not a
        continuum, but data falling into distinctly two parts. We should expect
        to see a sudden change of direction on the curve. No such sudden
        transition is observed.

        The continuum is also a difficulty for the Farrer Hypothesis, I would
        suggest. True, it can explain "pure double tradition" as Luke having
        copied verbatim from the written Gospel of Matthew, which the hypothesis
        posits. At the other end of the continuum, however, the smaller "minor"
        agreements require that Luke "internalized" parts of Matthew, and did
        two things. He not only copied from Mark but, as he did so, he also
        "recalled" his internalized memory of wording in Matthew (otherwise Luke
        must have switched rapidly from Mark to Matthew to Mark to Matthew, and
        so on, in passages in Luke which contain significant numbers of minor
        agreements) and merged wording from his "internal" source with wording
        from the written source he was copying - the Gospel of Mark. This makes
        the Farrer Hypothesis complicated, and gives the appearance of having
        added an ad hoc sub-hypothesis to overcome a difficulty in the main

        The observed continuum supports the idea that all three synoptists
        copied independently from the same documentary source which included
        both the double and triple tradition material. On this view, the triple
        tradition pericopes with no minor agreements are where Mark faithfully
        copied the wording of a passage in the common source, Matthew and Luke
        also copying the same passage. The pure double tradition is where Mark
        totally omitted a passage which both Matthew and Luke copied. The
        continuum is the result of Mark varying from omitting no words, to Mark
        omitting just a few words, to omitting about half of the words, to
        omitting most words, to omitting all words of a passage copied by both
        Matthew and Luke. The observed continuum therefore fits well the idea of
        a common documentary source copied independently by all three

        Best wishes,

        E-MAIL: brian@... HOMEPAGE http://www.twonh.demon.co.uk
        SNAILMAIL: Rev B. E. Wilson,
        10 York Close, Godmanchester,
        Huntingdon, Cambs, PE18 8EB, UK
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