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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Greeks, Grecians

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GREEKS, GRECIANS . Both these terms are used indifferently in AV [Note: Authorized Version.] of OT Apocr. [Note: Apocrypha, Apocryphal.] to designate persons of Gr. extraction ( Malachi 1:10 Malachi 1:10 ; 1Ma 6:2 ; 1Ma 8:9 , 2Ma 4:36 etc.). In NT the linguistic usage of EV [Note: English Version.] makes a distinction between the terms ‘Greeks’ and ‘Grecians.’ ‘ Greeks ’ uniformly represents the word Hellçnçs , which may denote persons of Gr. descent in the narrowest sense ( Acts 16:1 ; Acts 18:4 , Romans 1:14 ), or may be a general designation for all who are not of Jewish extraction ( John 12:20 , Romans 1:16 ; Romans 10:12 , Galatians 3:28 ). ‘ Grecians ,’ on the other hand ( Acts 6:1 ; Acts 9:29 ), is AV [Note: Authorized Version.] tr. [Note: translate or translation.] of Hellçnistai , which means Gr.-speaking Jews (RV [Note: Revised Version.] ‘ Grecian Jews ’). See preced. art. and Dispersion. An interesting question is that of the correct reading of Acts 11:20 . Were those to whom the men of Cyprus and Cyrene preached, Grecians or Greeks? In other words, were they Jews or Gentiles? The weight of MS authority is in favour of ‘Grecians,’ but it is held by many that internal evidence necessitates ‘Greeks.’

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Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Greeks, Grecians'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. 1909.

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