North and Hillard Composition Exercises

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
I've been working steadily through "Greek Prose Composition" by North and Hillard, in an attempt to improve my ancient Greek. I have an answer key, and though when my answer differs from it I generally understand why, there are a few places here and there where I can't see their logic.

Today it was Exercise 41 #3 (indirect statement with ὅτι):

English: It is reported that the enemy have fled.
My answer: ἀγγέλεται ὅτι οἱ πολεμίοι ἔφυγον.
Their answer: ἀγγέλεται ὅτι οἱ πολεμίοι πεφεύγασιν.

Why the perfect? "The enemy have fled" hardly seems to be the sort of enduring statement that calls for the perfect. Maybe if the enemy had permanently fled, never to return, but that's not implied here. Any thoughts?
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
Isn't that the same discussion as in English between "the enemies fled" and "the enemies have fled"?

The Greek perfect doesn't imply that an enduring state has been achieved by the action ... just that a state has been achieved by a past action that has an impact on the present. The perfect tense wouldn't logically preclude the enemy from returning.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
It's only my semi-informed take, though. Wait for someone who really knows Greek well.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
I know ... I mainly had the British distinction in mind (he has just arrived vs. he arrived 3 hours ago). And the Queen still reigns in Canada :p
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
Subtleties of Greek tense sequencing & aspect aside, 'have fled' is just N&H's way of making the thing formulaic & therefore doable. Here the formula is 'has/have X' = 'perfect tense'. Plus, those bastards just want to grill you on the obnoxious reduplicated forms with whacky endings like -ᾱσιν... :angry:

And I shake my fist at their 'collective noun + plural verb-form' construction. But then, you do that in Canada too, hey?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Isn't "the enemy + plural verb" standard everywhere now?
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
Everywhere except where reasonable people speak.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Where is that? :D
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
'murrica, 'course. Y'all come back soon nah, y'hear?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
America, reasonable? Is that a joke?
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
Isn't "the enemy + plural verb" standard everywhere now?
It sounded like an outdated construction to me ... is that in fact something that's up and coming? I think I would have noticed that, but usually people just pluralise enemy or use enemy + singular in the material I see and read.

America, reasonable? Is that a joke?
Don't listen to that xenophobic lady. America is great!
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
America is great!
Well, technically, it's in the process of being made great again...
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
Which means that it was great (it never was), and that it eventually will be great (it won't).
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
My answer: ἀγγέλεται ὅτι οἱ πολεμίοι ἔφυγον.
Incidentally, shouldn't πολέμιοι be a proparoxytone, 'cause for whatever reason the nom. pl. of o-stems wasn't considered 'heavy'?
 
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Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Subtleties of Greek tense sequencing & aspect aside, 'have fled' is just N&H's way of making the thing formulaic & therefore doable.
Yes, after some thought I figured that must be their intention.
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Incidentally, should πολέμιοι be a proparoxytone, 'cause for whatever reason the nom. pl. of o-stems wasn't considered 'heavy'?
You're right. For some reason I had incorrectly memorized πολεμίοs as the nom. form. I tend to have a lot of trouble recalling accents from memory, to be honest. :(
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
That's perfectly normal; you're not alone. I remember a Latin class where the prof was trying to flex her Greek knowledge & got the accent disastrously wrong (it was, I believe, κομητῆς that she wrote). Even though I was one of perhaps two blokes in the room who knew better, being a true gentleman, I said nothing.
:hat:
 

Hemo Rusticus

Lounge Lizard
Generally speaking though, adjectives of the shape -ιος are all like that, even if the original noun was an oxytone, e.g.
οὐράνιος < οὐρανός
ἄγριος < ἀγρός
or
θαλάσσιος < θάλασσα
αἴτιος < αἰτία

Edit: The last example is rather bad, as it's the other way round. But you get the point.
 
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