Talk:Comforter

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Comforter[edit]

Perhaps this is just a thing outside of the Christianity I was raised in, but I fail to see how this would qualify as a general proper noun. I can certainly see the Holy Spirit being given the epithet of "comforter," and I can see it being given the divine capitalization, but I still don't think that qualifies it as a genuine proper noun. Some good cites or a nice article or something might dissuade me. Thoughts? -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 21:41, 22 March 2009 (UTC)

I’m not familiar with this usage either, but I find a few Google hits. —Stephen 21:49, 22 March 2009 (UTC)
NOAD has this, capitalized, as a subsense of one of the senses of comforterMichael Z. 2009-03-22 21:56 z
It looks attestable to me: http://books.google.com/books?q=comforter+spirit&as_brr=3 DCDuring TALK 00:03, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
Well, the Holy Spirit being called a/the comforter is certainly attestable.....and in caps, as we can see from the quotes. However, I still feel that this is merely a regular noun, like father, savior, or teacher (all three of which I'm sure could be easily attested, among a myriad of others), which is applied to God (or one of his......manifestations? I don't want to get in a theological war over this) and is capitalized, because God and anything applied to him is always capitalized (a fact also well evidenced by the quotes). So.....it seems to me that this is not merely a matter of attestation, but....of something else....not quite sure what. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 02:28, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
In most OneLook dictionaries one way or another as "the Holy Spirit". DCDuring TALK 03:23, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
If we include this, will we not also have to include The Tremendous, The Creator, The Rightful, The Fashioner of Forms, The Ever Forgiving, and the other 94 of the 99 names of Allah? bd2412 T 22:14, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
No, each of those would only be included if it is also adequately attested. See WT:CFI#Attestation vs. the slippery slopeMichael Z. 2009-03-24 04:17 z
Exactly. Now there are certain epithets which are basically only epithets (as often happens in Ancient Greek), but epithets (even common ones), which mean nothing more than their standard meaning (i.e. in this case, comforter means "one who comforts") should not get their own separate entries. Their are plenty of common epithet collocations, and if we tread down this path [[Satan]] will also have to have George Bush and Adolf Hitler (among multitudinous others) senses. This is not helpful. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 22:47, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
Move to RfV. There is a distinction between "Hitler is Satan" and "I beseech thee, Comforter." For each "NP1 is NP2" we are not obliged to add a sense "NP1" to the entry or "NP2". I see no particular reason to distinguish religious context. Perhaps there is a need to make sure that the term truly conveys meaning and is not always used in constructions like "Holy Spirit is the Comforter" or "Paraclete, Comforter". DCDuring TALK 23:48, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
No need to transfer the discussion. I quote John 16:7 of the KJV "Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you." This demonstrates use of the proper noun in a well-known work, so only a single citation is required. --EncycloPetey 05:47, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
No, it most certainly does not. It shows the use of a common noun (which we already have an entry for) given the divine capitalization. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 05:49, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
When a noun only refers to a particular being, then it is a proper noun, no? This is how capitalized Comforter is defined in the NOAD and online Merriam–Webster,[1] Random House, American Heritage and Webster's.[2]
The Easton's definition at dictionary.com is interesting. Comforter is one attempt to translate paracletos, but Easton's maintains that the more correct translation is actually Advocate, for a concept which Paul refers to in different words. Not only does Comforter represent a particular being, its use has a specific etymology rooted in a specific concept. It is clearly distinct from the plain noun comforterMichael Z. 2009-03-24 23:25 z

Comment: Redeemer is perhaps the closest analogue we already have. Equinox 23:20, 24 March 2009 (UTC)

Fine, fine, I will relent on this, as so many other dictionaries seem to see this as a special case. However, note that this is only to follow suit with other respectable dictionaries. I fiercely maintain that no one has given any other criteria for distinguishing proper proper nouns from divine epithets (an important distinction, in my opinion). I believe this will come up again. -Atelaes λάλει ἐμοί 23:50, 24 March 2009 (UTC)