Feedback on indirect statements?

By Elagabalus Iuniore, in 'Ancient Greek', May 13, 2018.

  1. Elagabalus Iuniore New Member

    Hello, I was wondering where someone could point out where I've gone wrong on expressing indirect statements in Greek compared to regular ones? I'm sure that I'm nowhere near getting this right as I feel I barely understand the concept as it is now.

    The children will bring stones.

    τᾰ παιδῐαᾰ̓ξειντοὺς λῐθους.

    We think that the children will bring stones.
    νομῐζομενὅτιτᾰ παιδιᾰᾰ̓ξειντοὺς λῐθους.

    The children said that they would bring stones.
    τᾰ παιδῐα ἔλεγονὅτιτᾰ παιδιᾰᾰ̓ξειντοὺς λῐθους.

    We went to that island.
    ᾖμεν είς ταύτας τὴν νῆσον.

    We think that we went to that island.
    νομῐζομενὅτιᾖμεν είς ταύτας τὴν νῆσον.

    They said that they had gone to that island.
    ἔλεγονὅτιἦλθον είς ταύτας τὴν νῆσον.

    The soul of man is immortal.
    ἡ τοῦ ἀνθρώπουἀθάνατοςἐστι ψυχή.
    The poets say that the soul of man is immortal.
    οἱ ποιηταίλέγεινὅτιἡ τοῦ ἀνθρώπουψυχήεἶναιἀθάνατος.
    That wise man was put to death by the unjust citizens.
    οὗτος σοφὸς ἄνθρωποςἀπέθνῃσκοντοῖςἀδίκῳ πολῑ́ταις.

    I thought that the wise man had been put to death by the unjust citizens. thought that that…?)
    ἐνόμῐζονὅτιοὗτος σοφὸς ἄνθρωποςἀπέθνῃσκοντοῖςἀδίκῳ πολῑ́ταις.

    This man whom they wish to kill speaks the truth.
    οὗτοςἄνθρωπος ὃυς ἐθέλεινἀποκτείνεινλέγουσῐν ἡ ᾰλήθειᾰ.

    They denied that this man whom they wished to kill was speaking the truth.
    οὔ ἔφᾰσᾰνὅτι οὗτοςἄνθρωπος ὃυς ἐθέλεινἀποκτείνεινλέγουσῐν ἡ ᾰλήθειᾰ.
  2. Iáson Cívis Illústris

    • Civis Illustris
    I'm somewhat short on time at the moment but I'll comment on the first two sentences. In 'the children will bring stones', you need a finite verb in direct speech, not an infinitive. Hence ἄξουσιν, not ᾰ̓ξειν. (Also, note that a definite article is not needed here, as these are not specific stones; and you need φέρειν (future οἴσειν), not ἄγειν, in this sense - φέρειν is used of things, ἄγειν of animals and people.)

    If you then put this into indirect speech, verbs of saying and thinking can take two constructions, either ὅτι/ὡς + finite verb or accusative + infinitive (like in Latin). With a ὅτι/ὡς clause, if the verb in the main clause is 'primary' (present, future, or perfect tense) then the same tense and mood of the direct speech is used; if it is 'historic' (imperfect, aorist, pluperfect tense) then sometimes the same tense and mood of the direct speech is used, but sometimes the optative mood (and the same tense as the direct speech) is used instead.

    So in your second sentence you could have νομίζομεν ὅτι τὰ παίδια λίθους οἴσουσιν, using the ὅτι/ὡς construction; or you could use an accusative + infinitive construction, νομίζομεν τὰ παίδια λίθους οἴσειν.
    Godmy likes this.

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