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Re: Medio-passive (was: A Survey)

From:Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Tuesday, October 7, 2003, 5:30
On Monday, October 6, 2003, at 09:47 , Peter Bleackley wrote:

> Staving Ray Brown:
>> "I'm getting your hands washed [whether you like it or not]" > > This looks like a cue for any theologians who might be around to post a > linguistic analysis of the "Lord, do you wash my feet?" passage of John's > Gospel (St. Peter took offence that Jesus, his master, was taking the role > of a servant).
I think not. The verb used in the passage (John 13:5 - 10) is 'nipto:' (= classical 'nizo:'), except at the beginning of verse 10 where we have 'ho leloumenos' (the one-who-has-been-washed) and always in the active except, of course in verse 10 where a passive is required. 'nipto: ~ nizo:' coud, and often was, used in the middle voice, but this not appropriate here as Jesus was not washing his own feet, but those of other people. Certainly, as I think Peter is pointing out, it would've been quite improper for a slave to have used the middle in this context - but it wouldn't have been very natural for anyone to have done so in this context. More interesting is the use of the two verbs in the Greek where Latin and English uses the same verb. I had, I confess, forgotten the distinction and really should've been using 'nizo:' in my examples about washing hands :(( louo: ~ louomai = I am washing (completely) - it implies taking a bath rather than just washing ones hands or feet. nizo: ~ nizomai = I am washing (part of me). 'ho leloumenos' "the one who has been washed all over [and is now completely clean]" Ray =============================================== (home) (work) ===============================================