Singular or plural?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Jul 25, 2008.

  1. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe
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    Could some one establish that the KJV rendering "oath's" (singular possessive in English) corresponds to a plural form of horkos from the TR Greek text? Matthew 14:9 and parallel verse in Mark 6:26 --
    And the king was sorry: nevertheless for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him at meat, he commanded [it] to be given [her].

    And the king was exceeding sorry; [yet] for his oath's sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he would not reject her.
     
  2. Dr. Bob

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    Probable answer is that the plural possessive (apostrophe after the word) was not a consistent rule of the developing English grammar until long after the last major revision (1769) of the AV was formalized.

    Reading Shakespeare shows great variety of such punctuation from the same era as the Anglican translators in 1611.
     
  3. franklinmonroe

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    Maybe. But a statement found in Wikipedia --
    The use of the apostrophe to mark the English possessive ultimately derives from the Old English genitive case, indicating possession; this often ended in the letters -es, which evolved into a simple s for the possessive ending. An apostrophe was later added to mark the omitted e, a practice that came into general use in the 17th century... ​
    I checked a source for the 1850 revision of the KJV and it was still "oath's" (singular possessive) in both occurrences. I also looked at nine other TR-based texts: the King James Bible Clarified (1998, McGinnis), the King James Version Hebrew Names Edition (1999, Cummings), the American King James Version (1999, Engelbrite), the Third Millenium Bible (1998, Deuel Enterprises), the 21st Century King James Version (2003, Deuel Enterprises) and found them all still having "oath's" (singular possessive) in both verses. {Evidently, this is a modern-day sickness.} The AV7 (2008, The New Authorized Version Foundation) had both occurrences in the singular form!

    Young (1862) and Darby (1890) both have "oaths" (plural). So does the LITV (1976-2000, Green) --
    And the king was grieved, but because of the oaths, and those who reclined with him, he ordered it to be given. (Matthew 14:9)

    And having become deeply grieved, but because of the oaths and those reclining together, the king did not wish to reject her. (Mark 6:26) ​
     
    #3 franklinmonroe, Jul 25, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2008
  4. Logos1560

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    Scrivener in his 1873 Cambridge edition of the KJV has "oaths' sake" at Matthew 14:9 and Mark 6:26. Thus, those present Zondervan editions of the KJV starting around 2000 that are based on the 1873 Cambridge also have "oaths' sake." David Norton's 2005 Cambridge edition of the KJV also has "oaths' sake" at Matthew 14:9 and Mark 6:26.
     
  5. franklinmonroe

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    I still want some help from the Greek 'experts' because I also see where some other versions have rendered this word as singular (like the NET, NLT, and Webster). Notice A.T. Robertson's note at Matthew 14:9 --
    ... Herod, however, shrank from so dastardly a deed as this public display of brutality and bloodthirstiness. Men who do wrong always have some flimsy excuses for their sins. A man here orders a judicial murder of the most revolting type "for the sake of his oath"...​
    There is a variation between the Stephen's 1550 text (dia de tous orkous) and the Wescott-Hort text (dia tous orkous). Does the presence of de affect the number in translation in some manner?
     
    #5 franklinmonroe, Jul 26, 2008
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  6. robycop3

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    I believe the context shows there was just a single oath with several points in it.
     
  7. TCGreek

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    Franklin,

    I have no idea why that decision. My NA27 has no variant reading.

    The TR reads τους ορκους , which is plural.

    TNIV:
    The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he ordered that her request be granted.

    Which is correct, if we're going with the Greek in the text.
     
  8. franklinmonroe

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    Thanks, TCGreek! Of course we're going with the Greek; Greek is the basis for all other NT texts.
     
  9. franklinmonroe

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    So, while the AV text may not have been in error in 1611 (given the benefit of any doubt), it was a mistake to have not been fixed in later revisions. Any contemporary reader of a KJV would understand "oath's" to be the ordinary singular possessive; yet, thisdoes not accurately represent the plural form of the underlying Greek texts (and probably is not the AV translators' intended meaning of the possessive plural in English). But should we have to appeal to the Greek to discover what is God's word?

    In the context of today's English the rendering of "oath's" is just plain wrong. This archaic plural form of "oath's" would not be available in a dictionary; this obsolete plural form of "oath's" is not discussed in commentaries. Is the Holy Spirit expected to miraculously lead all readers into the obscured truth of "oath's" in the KJV? Is this really the best text that can be provided?

    Matthew 14:9 and parallel verse in Mark 6:26 --
    And the king was sorry: nevertheless for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him at meat, he commanded [it] to be given [her].

    And the king was exceeding sorry; [yet] for his oath's sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he would not reject her.
     
    #9 franklinmonroe, Jul 31, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2008

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