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Headword: *ou)si/a
Adler number: omicron,961
Translated headword: substance, being, essence, property
Vetting Status: high
We find the name and appellation ou)si/a contained not at all in the Divine Scripture.[1] But the common custom has made use of the name for the possessions meaning what one has acquired, such as dwelling-places, beasts, and other materials. For they call these 'the substance of what has been acquired'; in virtue of this concept we call the one who has obtained these things 'wealthy' [plou/sios], meaning 'of much substance' [poluou/sios].[2] And a people which has more than enough [periou/sios], the one which has possessions [or, "is owned"].[3] Also, "Israel for his private possession;" meaning a piece of property and with regard to possession.[4] But the philosophical use is aware that the noun ou)si/a is derived from the verb "to be" [ei)=nai], for it calls the existing thing [to\ o)/n] itself "substance" [ou)si/a]. For "being" [to\ o)/n] is the common name of all existing things. Now, this existing thing is divided into substance and accident. They define substance thus: substance is the common and indeterminate name that is borne equally by all the actual existences [u(posta/seis] [which are classified] under it [i.e. under substance] and is predicated synonymously [of all of them]. Or [substance is that] which is said of the underlying actual existences and appears equally in all of them; or the thing which is self-subsistent and does not require another thing to exist, that is to say, what exists in itself and does not have its existence in another thing, as what is accidental does. Therefore, the existence of what is without qualification is substance.
Greek Original:
*ou)si/a: th=s ou)si/as th\n klh=sin kai\ th\n proshgori/an ou)do/lws e)mferome/nhn eu(ri/skomen e)n th=| qei/a| grafh=|. h( de\ tw=n pollw=n sunh/qeia ke/xrhtai tw=| prosrh/mati e)pi\ tw=n shmainome/nwn kth/sewn, w(=n tis ke/kthtai, oi(=on oi)khma/twn, boskhma/twn kai\ loipw=n u(lw=n. tau=ta ga\r ou)si/an kalou=si tou= kekthme/nou: kaq' h(\n e)/nnoian kai\ to\n tau=ta kekthme/non plou/sion kalou=men: a)nti\ tou= poluou/sion. kai/, periou/sion lao/n, to\n e)/gkthton. kai/, *)israh\l ei)s periousiasmo\n e(autw=|: a)nti\ tou= kth=ma kai\ ei)s kth=sin. h( de\ logikh\ xrh=sis to\ th=s ou)si/as o)/noma a)po\ tou= ei)=nai r(h/matos oi)=de parh=xqai, au)to\ to\ o)\n pra=gma ou)si/an kalou=sa: to\ ga\r o)\n koino\n o)/noma/ e)sti pa/ntwn tw=n o)/ntwn. tou=to ou)=n to\ o)\n te/mnetai ei)s ou)si/an kai\ sumbebhko/s. o(ri/zontai de\ th\n ou)si/an ou(/tws: ou)si/a e)sti\n o)/noma koino\n kai\ a)o/riston, kata\ pasw=n tw=n u(p' au)th\n u(posta/sewn o(moti/mws fero/menon kai\ sunwnu/mws kathgorou/menon: h)\ h( kaq' u(pokeime/nwn u(posta/sewn legome/nh kai\ e)n pa/sais au)tai=s o(moti/mws qewroume/nh: h)\ pra=gma au)qu/parkton mh\ deo/menon e(te/rou pro\s u(/parcin: h)/goun to\ e)n e(autw=| o)\n kai\ mh\ e)n e(te/rw| e)/xon th\n u(/parcin, w(s to\ sumbebhko/s. ou)si/a ou)=n e)stin h( a(plw=s tw=n o)/ntwn u(/parcis.
cf. John of Damascus, PG 94.564. For the headword in its concrete senses see also omicron 962, omicron 963, omicron 964.
[1] The word occurs only in the books of Tobit, 3 Maccabees, and the gospel of Luke, and only in the concrete sense.
[2] The adjective plou/sios is in fact derived from the noun plou=tos 'wealth.'
[3] Or, 'special, peculiar people': Exodus 19.5 etc., Epistle to Titus 2.14. Cf. pi 1228.
[4] From Psalms 134:4 LXX: 'the Lord has chosen Jacob unto himself and Israel for his private possession' [periousiasmo/s, noted in LSJ s.v.]. See also pi 1227.
Keywords: Christianity; daily life; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; economics; philosophy; religion
Translated by: Marcelo Boeri on 11 October 2003@02:13:12.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (modified translation, added note and keyword) on 12 October 2003@01:28:14.
David Whitehead (added a note; cosmetics) on 12 October 2003@05:15:08.
David Whitehead (added x-refs) on 12 October 2003@06:38:26.
Catharine Roth (cosmetics) on 12 October 2003@11:38:04.
David Whitehead (corrected my typo) on 12 October 2003@11:51:19.
Catharine Roth (augmented notes) on 13 October 2003@00:53:11.
Catharine Roth (modified the translation a little more) on 16 October 2003@00:36:51.
Catharine Roth (fixed my typo, set status) on 16 October 2003@00:39:08.
David Whitehead (another keyword) on 4 December 2005@09:27:42.
David Whitehead on 2 August 2013@04:18:35.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 27 March 2015@23:44:12.
David Whitehead (coding) on 20 May 2016@06:29:40.
Catharine Roth (corrected cross-reference) on 3 March 2021@23:08:09.
Catharine Roth (tweaks) on 4 March 2021@01:12:59.
Ronald Allen (typo translation) on 4 March 2021@17:46:01.


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