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Thread: Colwell's Rule

  1. #1

    Default Colwell's Rule

    In thread: https://www.bibleworks.com/forums/sho...5&postcount=88

    semstu states:

    "I'm not sure if this is the correct name, but I think there is some rule of Greek grammar that says "an anarthous predicate noun that precedes the verb may be translated into English without the indefinite article." (Mark 2:28 and John 1:1 are two examples where this rule is used)

    Does anyone know how one could search for all instances where Colwell's rule has been used in a given English translation?"

    I moved this to a new thread, since it is not really an Add-on.

    Wallce has one of the better treatments of Colwell's Rule:

    Colwells rule is as follows: Definite predicate nouns which precede the verb usually lack the article . . . a predicate nominative which precedes the verb can*not be translated as an indefinite or a qualitative noun solely because of the absence of the article; if the context suggests that the predicate is definite, it should be translated as a definite noun. . . . (Wallace, 257)

    This whole section is very helpful, since Colwell's rule has been applied in exactly the opposite of its meaning many times.

    At the moment I am not sure how one would "search for all instances where Colwell's rule has been used in a given English translation."

    You would have to search for all predicate nouns which precede the verb in the GNM, then determine which ones are definite. This was Clowell's data from which he worked (long before BW, which is hard to imagine!). Once you have determined which ones are definite, according to Colwell one would notice that they also usually lack the article. Then one would have to look at the context of every one of these cases to see if the translation should be with or without an English article. Finally you would have to see how the English translation you are checking against translated the phrase.

    I am not sure that a search will get all of that information.

    Maybe someone else will have an idea...
    Joe Fleener

    jfleener@digitalexegesis.com
    Home Page: www.digitalexegesis.com
    Blog: http://emethaletheia.blogspot.com/

    Annotated Bibliography of Online Research Tools: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibliography

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    Psalm 46:11
    `#r<a'(B' ~Wra' ~yIAGB; ~Wra' ~yhi_l{a/ ykinOa'-yKi W[d>W WPr>h;

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    9

    Default

    Rat's! I was hoping there would be some way to search for a precise sequence of:

    1) anything OTHER THAN a definite article
    2) a predicate noun
    3) a verb
    4) a definite article
    5) a subject verb

  3. #3

    Default Here is a start

    Quote Originally Posted by semstu
    Rat's! I was hoping there would be some way to search for a precise sequence of:

    1) anything OTHER THAN a definite article
    2) a predicate noun
    3) a verb
    4) a definite article
    5) a subject verb
    Attached is an Advanced Search Engine Query (ASE). It is a place to start, it will not do everything you are looking for, but it will get you started.

    Play around with this and see what you can do.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Joe Fleener

    jfleener@digitalexegesis.com
    Home Page: www.digitalexegesis.com
    Blog: http://emethaletheia.blogspot.com/

    Annotated Bibliography of Online Research Tools: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibliography

    User Created BibleWorks Modules: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibleworks



    Psalm 46:11
    `#r<a'(B' ~Wra' ~yIAGB; ~Wra' ~yhi_l{a/ ykinOa'-yKi W[d>W WPr>h;

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    9

    Default

    > it will get you started.

    Thanks, it does look like it might be a helpful start.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    1

    Default

    Hope this helps.

    -Rob
    Attached Files Attached Files

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