THE ANCIENT GREEK FUTURE PARTICIPLE AND POLYCARP’S EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS. A Statistical and Morphosyntactical Study

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Institutionen för språk och litteraturer

Abstract: This thesis examines the Greek future participle from a statistical and morphosyntacticalperspective in order to ascertain whether the occurrence of a future participle in Polycarp'sEpistle to the Philippians might serve as a basis for emendation or not. The frequencies of thefuture participle in a relatively large selection of texts from the 5th century BCE to thebeginning of the 4th century CE are established through the databases Perseus underPhiloLogic and Thesaurus Linguae Graecae. In addition, the morphosyntax of the futureparticiple in early low-register Judeo-Christian texts is analysed and compared with the usagein Polycarp. The results from this study show that the occurrence of a future participle inPolycarp stands out for this particular type of Greek. The conclusion is therefore drawn thatthe future participle might be decisive for the textual critical debate but that further researchmust be conducted before a final stance can be taken. It is possible, however, that Polycarpianscholarship has largely overlooked the future participle. In that case this thesis provides freshinsight into an intractable controversy.

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