Friday, November 14, 2014

Another short note on the second person pronoun.

There is an argument about how "Thou" is informal and denotes familiarity, and is therefore more appropriate. I don't believe this, as has been discussed before. An argument against this that I did not mention before is that in the Greek Bible, this distinction is not used. The forms of the second person pronoun only indicate number in that era of Greek. Further, the translation of the Bible retained the usage of the Greek rather than the contemporary usage which conveyed degrees of familiarity. See Acts 26. A 17th century Quaker addressing a king as "thou" is a political statement, but St Paul doing so is not, it's just good Greek. This does not necessarily refute the argument for retaining the usage based on the idea of an "informal" relation with God, but this usage is not behind the choices in the KJV.