the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words
"a babbler," is used in Acts 17:18 . Primarily an adjective, it came to be used as a noun signifying a crow, or some other bird, picking up seeds (sperma, "a seed," lego, "to collect"). Then it seems to have been used of a man accustomed to hang about the streets and markets, picking up scraps which fall from loads; hence a parasite, who lives at the expense of others, a hanger on. Metaphorically it became used of a man who picks up scraps of information and retails them secondhand, a plagiarist, or of those who make a show in unscientific style, of knowledge obtained from misunderstanding lectures. Prof. Ramsay points out that there does not seem to be any instance of the classical use of the word as a "babbler" or a mere talker. He finds in the word a piece of Athenian slang, applied to one who was outside any literary circle, an ignorant plagiarist. Other suggestions have been made, but without satisfactory evidence.
"babbling" (from kenos, "empty," and phone, "a sound"), signifies empty discussion, discussion on useless subjects, 1 Timothy 6:20; 2 Timothy 2:16 .
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Vines, W. E., M. A. Entry for 'Babbler, Babblings'. Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​ved/​b/babbler-babblings.html. 1940.