Cases & Prepositions – A Proposal

No, I don’t have a proposal for some unified and rigorous description of how cases, prepositions, and semantics interact with each other in Greek. My proposal is much less grand.

I have plenty of Greek grammars and monographs these days. I’ve been blessed with a good eye for finding deals online, as well as flexibility in selling other books I know I won’t read.

But I also know that there are some books that I simply will never be able to afford. These are books that regularly catch my eye and taunt me on Amazon. Two good examples are:

A History of Ancient Greek: From the Beginnings to Late Antiquity $248

On the Meaning of Prepositions and Cases: The Expression of Semantic Roles in Ancient Greek (Studies in Language Companion Series) $180

These are two books that I will likely never own unless an incredible miracle happens (Nick, start praying). Both books are diachronic in nature, so they have implications for Hellenistic Greek as well.

The good news is that both books are accessible to me through the University of British Columbia’s Library with which Trinity Western has an borrower agreement.

When it comes to library books that you will never own, I’ve concluded that the best way to read one is to write about it all the way through, otherwise, you forget things and can never reference the book itself. So I’m thinking that after I start up again and finish my series on Discontinuous Syntax (Hyperbaton) in the New Testament which I’ll be picking up this next week now that BibleTech is over, I’ll begin blogging through On the Meaning of Prepositions and Cases for both my benefit and hopefully your’s as well. Beyond the basic summary, I don’t know the quality of the content, so we’ll be learning together on this one. But even still, you’re welcome to come along.

And if a group of, say, 18 people want to donate $10 Amazon gift certificates or 36 people want to donate $5, you are more than welcome to do so at my wish list – most of you missed my birthday anyway:

Amazon Wishlist

By the way, where is the stress on the word “Hyperbaton”? Is is hyPERbaton? Or hyperBAton?

8 thoughts on “Cases & Prepositions – A Proposal

Add yours

  1. Mike,

    Since English normally uses Latin accent rules, the accent would be on the antepenult: HyPERbaton. If the a were long (or closed), the accent would be hyperBAton, i.e., the penult.


  2. I know how you feel: I sometimes search for books that are either VERY expensive or out of print. Luckily, my university library is the biggest in the Netherlands so they often have the things I’m looking for. If I want to keep it, I just scan some pages or the entire book. Takes quite some time, but put in some hours and you’ll save 200 bucks!

    So far I know, copying things for yourself isn’t illegal.

      1. Never heard of it, but thanks for the site! Well, the US is a bit different then I guess. Good for the authors, but so good for the learners.

        Still, if you decide to copy an entire book and tell no one… who’ll know it?

        1. Aside from the ethical dilemma there, if a book is good enough, I’d rather own the real thing. Right now I have $55 of amazon gift certificates saved up – $125 to go.

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