evidentiality, he had great wealth

Avaric uses the so-called evidential verbal forms. Such forms are used when the speaker himself has not witnessed a given action or event, but has come to know about it indirectly or by report.

So, for example, when in the episode of the rich young man it is said that “he had great wealth,” this information, which was acquired by the teller from hearsay rather than from actual experience, can be expressed by means of these evidential verb forms. In addition, evidential verbs are used in the text of parables, being the standard form for reported speech in texts describing what the teller has not actually witnessed.

Source: Magomed-Kamil Gimbatov and Yakov Testelets in The Bible Translator 1996, p. 434ff.

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