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Bible Lexicons

Bullinger's Figures of Speech Used in the Bible

Homoeoptoton; or Like Inflections

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The Repetition of Inflections

Ho-me-op´-to-ton, from ὅμοιος (homoios), like, and πτῶσις (ptôsis), a falling, which in grammar means an inflection: i.e., a case formed by the declining of a noun, or tenses, etc., in the conjugation of a verb: as in the Latin message of Julius CAEsar, "veni, vidi, vici," i.e., "I came, I saw, I conquered."

This figure differs from the two former, in that the endings are not only similar, but the similarity arises from the same inflections of verbs or nouns, etc.

It will be seen, therefore, that this figure belongs peculiarly to the Original languages, and cannot always be transferred in translation.

Romans 12:15.-"Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep." Here the inflections of the infinitive and participles necessarily go together in the Greek, though, of course, not in the English.

χαίρειν μετὰ χαιρόντων. Chairein meta chairontôn.

κλαίειν μετὰ κλαιοντων. Klaiein meta klaiontôn.

The two lines likewise each exhibit an example of Polyptôton (q.v. [Note: Which see.] ), and also of Homœopropheron (q.v. [Note: Which see.] ).

The figure may be reproduced in English thus:-

Be cheerful with those that are glad,

Be tearful with those that are sad.

2 Corinthians 11:3.-Lest your minds "be corrupted from the simplicity (ἁπλότητος, haploteetos) and purity (ἁγνίτητος, hagnoteetos), that is towards (i.e., with reference to) Christ."

This is the reading of the R.V. [Note: The Revised Version, 1881.] , and is according to all the critical Greek Texts.

In English the words maybe rendered "simpleness and singleness."

2 Timothy 3:2-3.-In these two verses nearly all the words end in -οι (-oi), the masculine plural case-termination.

These similar endings may arise, as above, where the words are quite different. But when the two words are derived from the same root; or when they occur, not in the language in which they appear, but in the language from which they are translated (either written or spoken), then the figure is called-

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Bibliography Information
Bullinger, E. W., D.D. Entry for 'Homoeoptoton; or Like Inflections'. Bullinger's Figures of Speech Used in the Bible.

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