Chapter XII. Particles

§260. Prepositions

Prepositions are
simple (e.g. e- ‘to’) or compound (e.g. e.`n- ‘upon’). They can be prefixed to nouns or pronouns. When used before a noun the preposition shows the Construct form (e.g. e.p.rwmeTo the man’); but if used before a pronoun then the Pronominal form is employed (e.g. ero.3To him’). The pronoun is represented by the suffix form (§35). The pronominal forms are etymologically interesting in that they preserve weak consonants which have been lost in the Construct forms.
 Simple Prepositions:
§261.  e-, ero=  (2 pl [old r] is used for many purposes. The fundamental meanings are ‘to, for, from, than’.
(1) Dative: ‘to, for, according to, as regards’; e.g. bwk  ng.touo.k  e.p.ouhhbGo, show thyself to the priest’, a.3.r.ou.no2  n.4ops  ero.3He made a great feast for him’, pet  mmau  na.t.sabe.thutn  e.6wb  nimThat one will teach you as regards everything’ (Jn 14:26).
(2) Purpose: ‘in order to’ (§251).
(3) Direction: ‘towards’: e.g. a.3.kot.3  e.m.maqhthsHe turned himself towards the disciples’, e.k.e.`oou.3  e.p.hiThou shalt send him to the house’.
(4) In a hostile sense: ‘against’; e.g. a6ro.ou  nai  r.mntre  ero.kWhy do these witness against thee?’. Especially in the sense of debt or responsibility (cf §236.2).
(5) ‘from’; e.g. ma  tou`o.i`a`e(Give) to save me from my enemies!’
(6) Comparison (§114).
(7) Indicating the object after certain verbs (§331-2).
§262.  n-, mmo=  (2 pl [old m]. The fundamental meanings are ‘in, from, with’.
(1) Location ‘within, from’; e.g. m.pei.maIn this place’, e.lo  m.pei.maTo withdraw from this place’.
(2) Temporal; e.g. the day’, a.3.ei  n.t.eu4hHe came by night’.
(3) Instrument; e.g.  n.ou.aasHe smote Jesus with a blow’, nau  n.nou.balTo see with their eyes’.
(4) As a Genitive after the adverbs ebol,  sabol,  n.sabol; e.g. mp.r.sa6w.k  ebol  mmo.iDo not remove thyself from me’, mp.r.kwte  m.pek.6o  n.sabol  mmo.i Do not turn thy face away from me’.
(5) To introduce the Object, when the Construct or Pronominal form of the verb is not used (§328); e.g. 5.`w  mmo.sI say it’, 3.moste  m.p.ouoeinHe hates the light’.
(6) After the verbs  4wpe  To become’ and  o To be’  (Qual of eireTo make, do’), to introduce the qualification of the subject; e.g. pai  enta.3.4wpe  m.p.rodothsThis one who became the traitor’, 5.n.6m6al  na.3I am his servant (lit. I am made servant to him).
(7) With those verbs which take a Second Object, to introduce the Second Object; e.g. a.u.aa.n.rroThey made him king’.
§262a. The Pronominal forms mmo= are used: (a) After the particle mmin or mmine to lend emphasis to the notion of possession; e.g. te3.5me  mmin  mmo.3His own village’, pe3.eoou  mmine  mmo.3His own glory’; (b) Occasionally in a Genitival sense; e.g. nim  mmo.nWho of us?’
§263.  n-, na=  (2 pl [old n] to, for’ in dative sense; e.g. 5.`w  mmo.s  na.kI say it to thee (masc.)’, pe`a.m.filipposHe says to Philip’, a.3.5  na.m.mhte  n.mnaHe gave to them ten minae’.
§264.  mn-, nmma=  ‘with’:
(1) With the meaning ‘together with’; e.g. a.u.ra4e  nmma.sThey rejoiced with her’,  pe  mn  ou.anapausis It is movement with repose’ (Thomas 50; see §086).
(2) In lieu of the conjunction ‘and’; e.g. petros  mn.iw6annhs  mn.iakwbosPeter and John and James’, pek.eiwt  mn.anokThy father and I’, p.5ou  n.oeik  mn.p.tbt  snauThe five loaves and the two fishes’. Nouns thus linked together are usually, but not invariably, defined (§268.5).
(3) After 4a`eTo speak’; e.g., anok  pe  pet.4a`e  nmm.eI Am he who speaks with thee (fem.)’ (Jn 4:26).
§265.  oube-, oubh=  ‘opposite, toward, against’; e.g. pet`ia6ap  oubhkHe who receives judgment against thee’. Note the idioms: 5  oube- ‘To fight against’, ouw6m  oube- ‘To contradict’, moute  oube- ‘To call someone something’.
§266.  oute-, outw=  ‘between, among’; e.g. the temple and the altar’, the dead’.
§267.  4a-, 4aro=  ‘towards’:
Of persons; e.g. a.3.ei  4aro.3He came to him’.
(2) Of location; e.g.  n.t.oikoumenhUnto the limits of the inhabited (world)’.
(3) Temporal: 4a.ene6Forever (lit. Until ever)’,  m.p.w6sUntil the time of harvest’.
§268.  6i-, 6iw(w)=  ‘upon, from upon, out of’; the pronominal form is a compound of 6i+ww= (from the old i3tback’):
(1) ‘upon’; e.g. 6i.te.6ihUpon the road’, a.u.5  6iww.n.ou.xlamusThey put a robe upon him’.
(2) ‘from upon, out of’; e.g. 6i.p.`oi Out of the ship’, 6i.te.6ih  et.mmauFrom that road’.
(3) Temporal ‘in the time of’; e.g. 6i.p.pwwne  ebol  n.t.babulwnIn the time of the carrying away to Babylon’.
(4) ‘with’; e.g. ou.hrp ... e.3.th6  6i.si4eWine ... mingled with gall’.
(5) In lieu of the conjunction ‘and’, especially when nouns are undefined; e.g. 6a6  m.profhths  6i.rrwouMany prophets and kings’, ponhros  6i.agaqosEvil and good’.
§269.  6a-, 6aro=  ‘under’:
(1) Location: ‘under, in, at’; e.g. 6a.ou.4iBeneath a measured (load)’, so frequently used after verbs of carrying or bearing when the bearer is thought of as being beneath the burden; e.g.  6a  ouhr How much will you support?’ (Th 84).
(2) ‘from under, from’; e.g.  de  6a.p.6inhb  tnauWhen wilt thou rise up from sleep?’
(3) ‘in respect of, on behalf of’; e.g.  6arw.tnWhich will they give on your behalf’, raste  gar  na.3.roou4  6aro.3For tomorrow will take care of itself’.
(4) ‘for’, of price; e.g. 6a.4mt.4e  n.sateereFor 300 staters’, ou.bal  6a.ou.balAn eye for an eye’.
§270.  6ht=  Pronominal form only (rarely n.6ht=) before, against’ (lit. In front of); e.g. r.6ote  6ht.3  m.p.nouteTo fear before God’, stwt  6ht.3To tremble before him’.
§271.  6n-, n.6ht=  ‘within’:
(1) Location; e.g.  6n.t.peIn the heaven’, 6m.p.hi In the house’, n.6ht.3In him’.
(2) Temporal; e.g. 6n.t.arxhIn the beginning’,  et.mmauIn those days’ (§54).
(3) Instrument; ‘by, with’; e.g. 6n.t.sh3eBy the sword’.
(4) ‘From out of, from among’ following the adverbs ebol, (e)6rai; e.g. oua  ebol  n.6ht.thutnOne of you’ (lit. One out of you), a.3.ei  e6rai  6m.p.iordanhsHe came up from the Jordan’.
§272.  Compound Prepositions
By means of the Simple Prepositions prefixed to the nouns describing parts of the body which could take the possessive suffix
(§38), Coptic was able to form a wide range of Compound Prepositions. The most important of these are:
§273.  Compounds with e-
(1)  ern- (eron-), erw=to, upon’ (lit. To the mouth of), mostly with verbs of motion; e.g. a.3.6wn  e6oun  ern.n.roHe has approached to the doors’.
(2)  erat=to’ (lit. To the foot of) mostly of persons; e.g.  nmm.e  erat.3  m.pou.laosWith thee we shall return to thy people’.
(3)  etn-, etoot= (2 pl etn.thutn, etoot.thutn, ete[t].thutn)to’ (lit. To the hand of); e.g. ou  penta.mwushs  6on.3  etoot.thutnWhat is it which Moses commanded to you?’
(4)  etoun-, etouw=beside, with’ (lit. To the bosom); e.g. a.n.s2hr  etoun.kuprosWe sailed beside Cyprus’.
(5)  e6rn-, e6ra=to, among’ (lit. To the face of); e.g. a.u.pe4  ne3.6oite  e6ra.uThey divided his garments among them’.
(6)  e`n-, e`w= (lit. To the head of): (a) upon, over’, e.g. e`m.p.maover the place’, e`n.tei.geneaupon this generation’; (b) ‘for, on account of’, e.g. a.3.4n.6th.3  e`w.ouHe had compassion for them’, a.u.r.6ote  e`n.neu.erhuThey feared on account of their fellows’; (c) ‘against, to’, e.g. a.u.samariths ... ei  e`w.3A Samaritan ... came to him’; (d) ‘in addition to, after’, e.g. nai  e.3.e.oua  e`w.iThese things may he add in addition to me’.
§274.  etbe-, etbhht= (old r db3 ‘for the payment of’) because of, concerning’; e.g. etbe.paiBecause of this’, etbhh.tConcerning me’, r.mntre  etbe.p.rwmeTo bear witness concerning the man’.
§275.  Compounds with n-
(1)  nsa-, nsw=behind, after’ (lit. In the back); e.g. a.3.nau  ero.ou  e.u.ouh6  nsw.3He saw them following after him’, a.u.ka  n.ka  nim  nsw.ouThey left all things behind them’.
(2)  ntn-, ntoot= (2 pl nte.thutn)in, by, beside, from’ (lit. In the hand of); e.g. mp.ei.6e  e.pistis  n.tei.2ot  ntn.laauI have not found faith of this degree in anyone’, mmn.laau  na.3i  petn.ra4e  nte.thutn  ‘No one will take your joy from you’.
(3)  (n)na6rn-,  na6ra=in the presence of, before’; e.g. p.4a`e  ne.3.4oop  nna6rm.p.nouteThe Logos was in the presence of God’, kathgorei  nna6rm.p.eiwtTo accuse you before the Father’.
(4)  mma6- (old m-bzh [h dotted])before’, of sacrifice offered a deity; e.g. mma6.p.`oeisBefore the Lord’.
(5)  mpemto (from m-topresence’), preceded by the article or possessive adjective and followed by ebol  (n-), has the meaning ‘in the face of, before’; e.g. mpemto  ebol  m.p.nouteBefore God’, pai  n.tek.6ih  mpekmto  ebolThis one who will prepare thy way before thee’.
§276.  Compounds with 6a-
(1)  6arn-, 6arw=beneath, before’ (lit. Beneath the mouth); e.g. `e  e.u.e.kaa.u  6arw.ouIn order that they should place them before them’.
(2)  6arat=beneath, under’ (lit. Beneath the foot); e.g. ere.6en.matoi  4oop  6aratThere are soldiers under me’ (§39).
(3)  6atn- (varies with, see 4), 6atoot= beside, with’ (lit. Under the hand); e.g.  6atn.thutnHe will remain with you’.
(4)  6a6tn- (often confused with 6atn-, see 3), 6a(6)th=with, beside’ (lit. Beneath the heart); e.g. a.u.sepswp.3  e2w  6ath.uThey besought him to remain with them’, et.6moos  6a6th.3Who were sitting beside him’.
(5)  6a+poss.adj.+6hin front of someone/something’ (lit. Beneath-its-forepart); e.g. t.dikaiosunh  na.moo4e  6a.te3.6hRighteousness shall walk before him’, a.3.mestw.i  6a.tetn.6hIt hated me before you’.
§277.  Compounds with 6i-
(1)  6irn- (6iron-), 6irw=at, upon’ (lit. At the mouth); e.g.  6irw.3There was a stone upon it’.
(2)  6irat=toward’ (lit. At the foot); e.g. pwt  ebol  6irat.ouRun out toward them’.
(3)  6itn-, 6itoot=thru, by, from’ (lit. At the hand; cf §259, agent); e.g. 6itn.t.ouatbe  n.ou.6amntwnThru the eye of a needle’, n.ka  nim  a.u.4wpe  ebol  6itoot.3All things happened through him’.
(4)  6itoun-, 6itouw=beside, next’ (lit. Upon the bosom); e.g. 6itoun.p.hiBeside the house’. Note the relative substantive formed from this Compound Preposition: pet.6itouw.kHe who is beside thee’, i.e. ‘Thy neighbor’.
(5)  6i6ra=on the face of’; e.g. 6i6ra.m.p.moouOn the face of the water’.
(6)  6i`n, 6i`w=upon, over’ (lit. On the head); e.g. 6i`n.ou.pinacUpon a dish’, nh`  6i`n.ou.2lo2Laying upon a bed’, t.mnt.ero  m.p.eiwt  e.s.por4  ebol  6i`m  p.ka6  The Sovereignty of the Father is spread upon the earth’ (Th 113). Note the Relative Substantive formed by the Compound pet.6i`n- ‘He who is over, in command’; e.g. pet.6i` one in command of the reapers’.
§278.  a`n- (e`n-), a`nt= (e`nt=)  ‘without’; e.g. a`nt.3  mpe.laau  4wpeWithout him did not anything come into being’, a`m.parabolh  mp.3.`e laauWithout parable he did not say anything’.
§279.  `in-  ‘from, since’; e.g. `  n.6wtp  m.p.rhFrom the place of the setting of the sun’ (Josh 1:4), `in.t.eunou  et.mmauFrom that hour’, `in.t.arxh  m.p.swntSince the beginning of creation’.
§280. Greek Prepositions used in Coptic
The commonest of these are:

kata-,  kataro=

according to, after’

para- (also m-.para-),  pararo=

more than’



xwris- (the following noun is usually without the article)


6ws- (the following noun is without the article)