γάρ (postpositive) in fact, indeed , and for, a confirmatory adverb and a causal conjunction. As a conjunction, γάρ usually stands after the first word in its clause; as an adverb, its position is
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freer. γάρ is especially common in sentences which offer a reason for, or an explanation of, a preceding or following statement. It may be used in successive clauses.
a. γάρ is from γέ ἄρ ( = ἄρα), γέ originally giving prominence either to the word it followed or to the whole clause, while ἄρα marked this prominence as due to something previously expressed or latent in the context. The compound γάρ originally emphasized a thought either as the result of existing circumstances or as a patent and well known fact. In most uses of the word, however, the force of its component parts cannot be distinguished nor is it clear in many cases whether γάρ is a conjunction or an adverb marking assurance.
Adverbial γάρ appears in questions, answers, and wishes; and in many other cases where recourse is had to conscious or unconscious ellipse by those scholars who hold that γάρ is always a conjunction. Ellipse is sometimes natural and easy, but often clumsy and artificial. Though we find in parallel use both incomplete and complete clauses with γάρ, it is improbable that the Greeks were conscious of the need of any supplement to explain the thought. In many uses γάρ has become formulaic, serving only to show the natural agreement with the existing situation.
In questions, γάρ asks for confirmation of a preceding statement, or expresses assent or dissent; asks whether an act before mentioned was not reasonable; asks a question prompted by some form of emotion; and serves to indicate transition, etc.
a. In questions γάρ often marks surprise or indignation, and may frequently be translated by what, why, then, really, surely. Thus, ταυτὶ_ λέγεις σὺ στρατηγὸν πτωχὸς ὤν; ἐγὼ γάρ εἰμι πτωχός; do you, beggar that you are, address your general thus? what! I a beggar? Ar. Ach. 593, ἦ ζῇ γὰρ ἁ_νήρ; is the man really alive? S. El. 1221, οἴει γάρ σοι μαχεῖσθαι . . . τὸν ἀδελφόν; do you really think that your brother is going to fight? X. A. 1. 7. 9. So τίς γάρ; who then, why who?
b. Brief interrogative formulae asking for confirmation of a preceding statement are:
τί γάρ; what then, how when, how else? τί γάρ also serves as a formula of transition (now, well then, now what . . ., furthermore).
ἦ γάρ; is it not so? surely this is so? (cp. n'est ce pas). Often of surprise.
οὐ γάρ; is it not so? often in indignant questions; when not standing alone, why not?
πῶς γάρ; πόθεν γάρ; imply that something is impossible (often of surprise). Cp. πῶς γὰρ οὔ; in negative rhetorical questions.
In answers γάρ marks assent, assurance, sometimes dissent. Thus, -- 639 --
S. Ph. 755,
δεινόν γε τοὐπίσαγμα τοῦ νοσἡματος. δεινὸν γὰρ οὐδὲ ῥητόν dread indeed is the burden of one disease. Aye dread indeed and beyond all words
X. A. 1.6.8,
ὁμολογεῖς οὖν περὶ ἐμὲ ἄδικος γεγενῆσθαι; ἦ γὰρ ἀνάγκη do you then confess that you have proved yourself unjust toward me? In truth I must indeed
P. R. 381e, φῂς τάδ' οὖν; ἃ μὴ φρον γὰρ οὐ φιλῶ λέγειν dost thou then consent to this? No, for I am not wont to utter words I do not mean S. O. T. 1520.
μηδ' αἱ μητέρες τὰ παιδία ἐκδειματούντων . . . μὴ γάρ, ἔφη nor let mothers frighten their children. No indeed, said he
a. γάρ is common in brief answers, as after οὐ, δεῖ, ἔοικε, εἰκός, λέγω, ὡμολόγηται. So in the rhetorical questions πῶς γάρ; πῶς γὰρ οὔ; used as answers.
P. Pr. 310d, κακῶς γὰρ ἐξόλοιο oh that you might perish wretchedly E. Cyc. 261. Here γάρ marks the agreement of the wish with the existing situation.
εἰ γὰρ . . . ἐν τούτῳ εἴη would that it depended on that
Explanatory (or prefatory) γάρ has the force of now, namely, that is, for example; but usually is not to be translated, and especially when the preceding sentence contains a verb of saying, showing, etc. It usually introduces, as an explanation, the details of that which was promised in an incomplete or general statement; sometimes, without any such statement, it introduces a new fact. Whether this γάρ is an adverb or a conjunction is uncertain. Thus, δοκεῖ τοίνυν μοι χαριέστερον εἶναι μῦθον ὑ_μῖν λέγειν. ἦν γάρ ποτε κτλ. I think it will be more interesting to tell you a myth. Once upon a time there was, etc. P. Pr. 320c,
L. 19.34 (at the beginning of a new point in the discussion).
οὕτω γὰρ σκοπεῖτε look at it in this light
Explanatory γάρ often introduces a clause in apposition to a preceding demonstrative, to such expressions as τεκμήριον δέ or μαρτύριον δέ now the proof is this, δῆλον δέ (ἐστιν) it is clear, τὸ δὲ μέγιστον but, what is of the greatest importance, or to relative clauses ( cross995). Thus, ὡς δ' ἔτι μᾶλλον θαρρῇς, καὶ τόδε κατανόησον· οἱ μὲν γὰρ (explaining τόδε) πολέμιοι πολὺ μὲν ἐλά_ττονές εἰσι νῦν ἢ πρὶν ἡττηθῆναι ὑφ' ἡμῶν and that you may be still more encouraged, consider this fact too. The enemy (namely) are much fewer now than they were before they were beaten by us X. C. 5.2.36, ἐννοήσωμεν δὲ καὶ τῇδε, ὡς πολλὴ ἐλπίς ἐστιν ἀγαθὸν αὐτὸ εἶναι. δυοῖν γὰρ θά_τερόν ἐστιν τὸ τεθνάναι κτλ. let us consider the matter also in this way and we shall see that there is abundant reason to hope that it is a good: now death must be one of two things, etc. P. A. 40c, μαρτύριον δέ· Δήλου γὰρ καθαιρομένης κτλ. and this is a proof of it: now when Delos was being purified, etc. T. 1.8,
δ δὲ πάντων σχετλιώτατον· οὓς γὰρ ὁμολογήσαιμεν ἂν πονηροτάτους εἶναι τῶν πολι_τῶν, τούτους πιστοτάτους φύλακας ἡγούμεθα τῆς πολι_τεία_ς εἶναι but the most abominable of all is this: we consider the most trustworthy guardians of the State to be those men whom we should agree were the worst citizens
Causal γάρ is a conjunction: for (nam, enim). It serves to introduce a cause of, or a reason for, an action before mentioned; to justify a preceding utterance; to confirm the truth of a previous statement. Causal γάρ often refers to a thought implied in what has preceded. Thus, λεκτέα ἃ γιγνώσκω· ἔμπειρος γάρ (causal) εἰμι καὶ τῆς χώρα_ς τῶν Παφλαγόνων καὶ τῆς δυνάμεως. ἔχει γὰρ (explanatory) ἀμφότερα, καὶ πεδία κάλλιστα καὶ ὄρη ὑψηλότατα I must tell what I know, for I am acquainted with the country of the Paphlagonians and its resources; now the country has very fertile plains and very lofly mountains X. A. 5.6.6, ἰού, δύστηνε· τοῦτο γάρ σ' ἔχω μόνον προσειπεῖν alas, ill-fated one! for by this name alone can I address thee S. O. T. 1071, ἐπιστευόμην δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν Λακεδαιμονίων· οὐ γὰρ ἄν με ἔπεμπον πάλιν πρὸς ὑ_μᾶς but I was trusted by the Lacedaemonians; for (otherwise, i.e. εἰ μὴ ἐπίστευον) they would not have sent me back to you P. A. 30c.
Anticipatory γάρ states the cause, justifies the utterance, or gives the explanation, of something set forth in the main clause which follows. The main clause usually contains an inferential word, a demonstrative pointing backward,
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or καί, δέ, ἀλλά; or stands without a connective. Anticipatory γάρ may often be rendered by since, but is often omitted in translation. Thus, ἔτι τοίνυν ἀκούσατε καὶ τάδε. ἐπὶ λεία_ν γὰρ ὑ_μῶν ἐκπορεύσονταί τινες. οἶμαι νῦν βέλτιστον εἶναι κτλ. listen therefore to this proposal also. Some of you will be going out to plunder. Now it is my opinion that it is best, etc. X. A. 5.1.8, ἐσελθὼν δὲ τὴν ταχίστην, ἦν γάρ οἱ παῖς εἷς μοῦνος . . ., τοῦτον ἐκπέμπει and when he had come in straightway, he sent out his son, for he had one only son Hdt. 1.119, ὦ φίλοι, οὐ γάρ τ' ἴδμεν ὅπῃ ζόφος οὐδ' ὅπῃ ἠώς . . . ἀλλὰ φραζώμεθα κτλ. friends, since we do not know where is the place of darkness nor of the dawn, let us consider, etc. κ 190,
Ar. Ach. 102.
ὦ φίλτατε, σπονδαὶ γάρ εἰσί σοι μόνῳ, μέτρησον εἰρήνης τί μοι my dear fellow, since you alone have got a truce, measure me out a bit of peace
a. In this construction γάρ may be an adverb, not a conjunction. Cases of explanatory γάρ ( cross2808) and of parenthetical γάρ ( cross2812), especially after vocatives, may fall under 2811.
The clause with γάρ since is often inserted parenthetically in the clause which it is intended to explain; as ὁ δὲ (κρἱ_νουσι γὰρ βοῇ καὶ οὐ ψήφῳ) οὐκ ἔφη διαγιγνώσκειν τὴν βοὴν ποτέρα_ μείζων but, since they decide by shouts and not by ballot, he said he could not decide which side shouted the louder T. 1.87.
καὶ γάρ has in general two distinct meanings according as γάρ is an adverb or a conjunction. As καὶ γάρ has become a formula, it is often uncertain which of the two words is the adverb, which the conjunction.
(I) καὶ γάρ and in fact, and indeed, καί being a conjunction, and γάρ an adverb. Here the clause in which καὶ γάρ stands is added as a new and important thought; where γάρ alone would state the reason or the explanation with less independence and with slighter emphasis. The negative is οὐδὲ γάρ. Thus Κῦρος δ' ὁρῶν τοὺς Ἕλληνας νι_κῶντας τὸ καθ' αὑτοὺς . . . ἐπεμελεῖτο ὅ τι ποιήσει βασιλεύς. καὶ γὰρ ᾔδει αὐτὸν ὅτι μέσον ἔχοι τοῦ Περσικοῦ στρατεύματος on seeing the Greeks victorious over the troops opposed to them, Cyrus watched to see what the king would do; and in fact he knew that he commanded the centre of the Persian force X. A. 1.8.21 (cp. cross1. 1. 6, 2. 5. 5, 2. 6. 2). So often in affirmative responses: ἢ οὐκ ἀγαπήσεις τούτων τυγχάνων; ἐγὼ μὲν γὰρ ἂν ἀγαπῴην. καὶ γὰρ ἐγώ, ἔφη or will you not be content if you obtain this? For my part I shall be. And so shall I, he said P. R. 473b.
a. καὶ γὰρ καί and even is καὶ γάρ and in fact reënforced by καί. Thus, καὶ γὰρ καὶ ἄδεια ἐφαίνετο αὐτοῖς and in fact it looked to them as if there was perfect safety in so doing T. 4.108. The negative is οὐδὲ γὰρ οὐδέ ( cross2938).
(II) καὶ γάρ for even, for also. Here καί is an adverb affecting a single word, several words, or the whole sentence, and γάρ is a conjunction. The negative is οὐδὲ γάρ. Thus,
P. A. 22c,
καὶ γὰρ οὗτοι for these too
E. Med. 314, καὶ γὰρ μόνος ἡγοῖτ' ἂν δύνασθαι πείθειν for, though quite unaided, he would think that he was able to persuade X. M. 1.2.11.
καὶ γὰρ ἠδικημένοι σι_γησόμεσθα for even wronged as I am I'll keep silent
a. καὶ γὰρ . . . καί for both . . . and: here καί is correlated with a second καί; as -- 641 --
X. M. 3.12.4.
καὶ γὰρ ὑγιαίνουσιν οἱ τὰ σώματα εὖ ἔχοντες καὶ ἰσχύ_ουσι for those who keep their bodies in good condition are both healthy and strong
ἀλλὰ γάρ occurs both in conjunction and separated by one or several words, which are generally emphatic.
First Form (often but since, since however): here there are two predicates. In prose separation is the rule. Thus,
Hdt. 9.109, ἀλλ' ἴσως γὰρ καὶ ἄλλοι ταὐτὰ ἐνθυ_μοῦνται, . . . μὴ ἀναμένωμεν ἄλλους ἐφ' ἡμᾶς ἐλθεῖν κτλ. since however others too perhaps entertain the same opinion, let us not wait for others to come to us, etc. X. A. 3.1.24. In poetry the words are generally not separated. Thus, ἀλλὰ γὰρ Κρέοντα λεύσσω τόνδε . . . πρὸς δόμους στείχοντα, παύσω τοὺς . . . γόους since however I see Creon yonder coming to the palace, I will cease my lamentations E. Phoen. 1307. Here the clause coördinated by the conjunction γάρ is parenthetical and gives, by anticipation, the reason for the ἀλλά clause. Cp. ἀλλ' ἐπεί ε 137, and Shakesp. Sonnet 54: “but, for their virtue only is their show, They live unwoo'd.”—The first form is found chiefly in Homer, Pindar, Herodotus, and in the drama.
ἀλλ', οὐ γὰρ ἔπειθε, διδοῖ τὸ φᾶρος but since he could not persuade her, he gave her the mantle
Second Form (usually but indeed, but in fact, but the truth is, but be that as it may). Here there is a single predicate. Thus,
P. A. 19c, ἀλλὰ γιγνώσκω γὰρ . . . ὅτι κτλ. but indeed I know that, etc. X. C. 2.1.13,
καὶ οὐχ ὡς ἀτι_μάζων λέγω . . . ἀλλὰ γὰρ ἐμοὶ τούτων . . . οὐδὲν μέτεστι and I do not speak in disparagement; but the truth is I have nothing to do with these matters
E. Or. 725,
ἀλλ' εἰσορῶ γὰρ τόνδε . . . Πυλάδην δρόμῳ στείχοντα but indeed I see Pylades yonder coming at full speed
S. O. C. 755.
ἀλλ' ου' γὰρ ἔστι τἀ_μφανῆ κρύπτειν but indeed it is impossible to hide what lies open
a. In this use γάρ may have preserved, or regained, its primitive adverbial (confirmatory) force. Many scholars, however, claim that there was a conscious or unconscious ellipse, after ἀλλά, of an idea pertinent to the situation; and thus regard this form as logically equivalent to the form in which γάρ is a causal conjunction. In actual use ἀλλὰ γάρ was clearly a formula used without any consciousness of an omitted idea.
ἀλλὰ γάρ has a great variety of uses, most of which may be classed as follows:
a. In statements of direct opposition: καὶ ταῦτά σε πολλοῦ δεῖ λεληθέναι, ἀλλὰ γὰρ οἶμαι δ ἄρτι οὐκ ἔφησθα ποιεῖν, τοῦτο ποιεῖς and you are far from forgetting this, but in fact I think you are doing that which you just denied you were doing P. Charm. 166c.
N. This use is post-Homeric, rare in the drama, common in the orators and Plato. It is especially frequent in putting and setting aside an objection supposed to be raised by an opponent (hypophora). Cp. b.
b. In real and assumed objections (cp. at enim): καὶ ἀληθῆ γε ἔλεγον, ὦ Σώκρατες. ἴσως. ἀλλὰ γάρ, ὦ Εὐθύφρων, καὶ ἀλλὰ πολλὰ φῂς εἶναι ὅσια yes, and I said what was true, Socrates. Perhaps, but in fact, Euthyphron, you say that many other things too are holy P. Euth. 6d, ἀλλὰ γάρ, φήσει τις, οὐ ῥᾴδιον ἀεὶ λανθάνειν κακὸν ὄντα yes, but some one will say that it is not easy always to conceal the fact that one is wicked P. R. 365c.
c. In transitions.—(1) At the close of the discussion of an argument, where the force of ἀλλά is like that of and yet or emphatic but. Thus, ἀλλὰ γάρ, ὦ
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βουλή, ταῦτα μὲν ἐνθάδε οὐκ οἶδ' ὅ τι δεῖ λέγειν but, Senators, I do not know why I should discuss these matters here L. 7.42,
P. A. 42a.
ἀλλὰ γὰρ ἤδη ὥρα_ ἀπιέναι but it is already time to depart
(2) To restrain the expression of emotion; as ἀλλ' ἄναξ γάρ ἐστ' ἐμός, σι_γῶ but no, I am silent for he is my king E. El. 1245.
(3) When the approach of a new actor is announced. Cp. cross2817, cross2818.
Other Combinations.—γὰρ ἄρα for sure enough.
γὰρ δή for of course, for indeed, for you must know, as φαμὲν γὰρ δή for of course we say so.
γὰρ δή που for I presume, for doubtless.
γὰρ οὖν often of frank assent, as οὐ γὰρ οὖν certainly not, λέγω γὰρ οὖν certainly, I do say so; less often to explain (for certainly); καὶ γὰρ οὖν (not very common) is stronger than καὶ γάρ.
γάρ που for I suppose.
γάρ τοι for surely, for mark you; sometimes καὶ γάρ τοι.