Herbert Weir Smyth [n.d.], A Greek Grammar for Colleges; Machine readable text [info] [word count] [Smyth].
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The participle (μετοχή participation) is a verbal adjective, in part a verb, in part an adjective.


The participle is like a verb herein:

a. It shows the distinctions of voice and tense. Its tenses mark action simply occurring, continuing, and completed.

b. It can have an object in the same case (genitive, dative, accusative) as the finite forms.

c. It is modified by adverbs, not by adjectives.

d. It may take ἄν, and, with that particle, represents ἄν with the indicative or ἄν with the optative ( cross1845 ff.).


The participle shows its adjectival nature by being inflected and by admitting the article before it, both of which characteristics give it the character of a noun. It follows the rules of agreement like other adjectives ( cross1020). Unlike the adjective, it represents a quality in action (cp. cross1857).


The participle is always used in connection with a substantive or a substantive pronoun, which may be contained in a verbal form, as διάγουσι μανθάνοντες they spend their time in learning.


The tenses of the participle (except the future) not in indirect discourse are timeless, and denote only stage of action ( cross1872). When they stand in indirect discourse and represent the indicative, they denote time relatively to that of the main verb.


The future participle marks an action as in prospect at the time denoted by the leading verb. Since it expresses an idea of will, it shows that an action is purposed, intended, or expected. With the article it denotes the person or thing likely (or able) to do something ( = μέλλων with inf. cross1959). The nearest approach to mere futurity appears in general only after verbs of knowing and perceiving ( cross2106, cp. cross2112 b).

ὁ δ' ἀνὴρ αὐτῆς λαγὼς ᾤχετο θηρά_σων but her husband had gone to hunt hares X. A. 4.5.24, ὁ ἡγησόμενος οὐδεὶς ἔσται there will be no one to guide us 2. 4. 5, πολλὰ . . . δεῖ τὸν εὖ στρατηγήσοντα ( = τὸν μέλλοντα εὖ στρατηγήσειν) ἔχειν he who

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intends to be a good general must have many qualifications X. M. 3.1.6, θανουμένη γὰρ ἐξῄδη for I knew that I should (or must) die S. Ant. 460 (cp. cross2106).


The negative of the participle is οὐ, except when the participle has a general or conditional force, or occurs in a sentence which requires μή. See cross2728.


The participle has three main uses.

A. Attributive: as an attributive to a substantive.

B. Circumstantial (or Adverbial): denoting some attendant circumstance and qualifying the main verb like an adverbial phrase or clause.

C. Supplementary: as a supplement to a verbal predicate, which, without such a supplement, would be incomplete.


The circumstantial and supplementary participles are predicate participles.


The attributive and circumstantial participles are commonly not necessary to the construction; but the removal of a supplementary participle may make the construction incomplete. The circumstantial participle is used by way of apposition to the subject of the verb and, though strictly predicative, may agree attributively with a noun or pronoun. An attributive participle may be circumstantial, as οἱ μὴ δυνάμενοι διατελέσαι τὴν ὁδὸν ἐνυκτέρευσαν ἄσι_τοι those who (i.e. if any) were unable to complete the march passed the night without food X. A. 4.5.11. A participle may be both circumstantial and supplementary, as ἀδικούμενοι ὀργίζονται (T. 1.77) they are enraged at being wronged or because (when, if) they are wronged. Circumstantial and supplementary participles often cannot be sharply distinguished; as with verbs signifying to be angry, ashamed, content, pleased ( cross2100), inferior to, do wrong ( cross2101), endure ( cross2098), come and go ( cross2099). Thus, ἀδικῶ ταῦτα ποιῶν I do wrong in doing this or I am guilty in doing this: in the first case ταῦτα ποιῶν is appositive to the subject of the verb; in the second these words define the predicate adjective ἄδικος contained in ἀδικῶ ( = ἄδικός εἰμι).

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Herbert Weir Smyth [n.d.], A Greek Grammar for Colleges; Machine readable text [info] [word count] [Smyth].
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