Topics in Coptic Syntax. Structural Studies in The Bohairic Dialect

Shisha-Halevy A.

Summing-up four decades of research into Egyptian and Coptic grammar, and more than twenty years of study of Bohairic syntax, this work is a series of structural accounts of important sub-systems of Bohairic, in four chapters: Narrative and Dialogue Grammar, including tensing, texture and juncture; Nexus and Focalization Grammar, including the Nominal Sentence, Existential Statements, focussing and topicalization patterns; the Noun Syntagm, determination systems, generics, deixis, the Proper Name, possesion, the notae relationis and inalienable association; juncture features: Linkage and Delimitation, reference juncture, graphemato-morphematic juncture, “Ordination” juncture. The description is corpus-specific (the unedited Paris copte 1 Pentateuch, in constant comparison with the equally unedited Vat. copt 1), but always contrastive with the Nitrian and New Testament varieties of Bohairic. The work aims at reinstating the Bohairic dialect as central in the synchronic and diachronic appreciation of Coptic grammar (and, within Bohairic, “rehabilitating” the all-important Nitrian variety); also, at proving the syntactical independence of the Bohairic text vis a vis the Greek original — indeed, at making the case, by contrastive analysis, for a greater sophistication of the Bohairic system.