A School Grammar of Attic Greek

Thomas Dwight Goodell


600. Successive independent sentences in Greek are usually joined together in one of four ways:

  1. By a coordinating conjunction;
  2. By a demonstrative pronoun or adverb; this may be in the earlier sentence, pointing forward, or in the latter, pointing backward;
  3. By a relative pronoun or adverb, at the beginning of the second sentence;
  4. By a particle standing early in the second sentence, and referring to the preceding sentence.

a. Absence of such a connective (ἀσύνδετον not bound together, asyndeton), though so common in English, is generally in Greek a mark of emotion. Thus the following passage shows far more feeling than the English version:

ἀκηκόατε, ἑωρκατε, πεπόνθατε, ἔχετε· δικάζετε.
You have heard, seen, suffered, you have him; give judgment.
Lysias 12.100


b. Repetition of some significant word (ἀναφορᾱ́ anaphοra), with asyndeton, is an emotional way of connecting sentences:

Tί οὖν ἐστι τοῦτο; ἀπιστίᾱ. ταύτην φυλάττετε, ταύτης ἀντέχεσθε.
What, then, is this? Distrust. Guard this, cling to this.
Demosthenes 6.24


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