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Learning Greek?

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Learning Greek?

Postby catalinux » Fri Oct 07, 2011 11:50 am

I would like to learn Attic Greek in order to be able to read authors such a Plato in the original language. I have already learned from very helpful contributors on Yahoo! Answers that New Testament Greek (Koine Greek) will not prepare me completely for Attic Greek. I am still wondering, though, if it would be a good idea to take a year of New Testament Greek at a theological seminary in preparation for Attic Greek, since I cannot begin learning Attic Greek for another year. How much easier will this make it to learn Attic Greek? How much extra work would be required? Is it a waste of time? Will it actually set me back? I would love your help!
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Re: Learning Greek?

Postby Markos » Sat Oct 15, 2011 3:12 pm

Hi, Catalinux,

Attic and Koine are the same language. Learning one is very helpful in learning the other. If you can, by all means take that seminary course in NT Greek.

Good luck!


{ χαῖρε Καταλινυξ,

ἡ μὲν οὖν Ἀττικὴ καὶ ἡ Κοινὴ γλῶσσα μία. ἡ μάθησις οὖν τῆς Κοινῆς ωφελίμη πρὸς τὴν τῆς Ἀττικῆς μάθησιν. ἐὰν δύνασαι, ἔρχου δὴ πρὸς ταύτην τὴν σχολήν τὴν θεολογικήν.

εὐτύχει! }
I am writing in Ancient Greek not because I know Greek well, but because I hope that it will improve my fluency in reading. I got the idea for this from Adrianus over on the Latin forum here at Textkit.
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Re: Learning Greek?

Postby Grochojad » Sat Oct 15, 2011 4:13 pm

Markos wrote:Attic and Koine are the same language. Learning one is very helpful in learning the other. If you can, by all means take that seminary course in NT Greek.


If they are the same language why learning one of them is only "helpful" and not "equal" to learning the other?

Attic and Koine are two different parts of the evolution of a language. There is a difference of over 500 years between classical authors and Vulgate, so the language couldn't, by any means, remain the same. They are both quite similar nevertheless. The year spent learning Koine certainly wouldn't be a waste and a decent start on your way to reading Plato.
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Re: Learning Greek?

Postby ragnar_deerslayer » Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:31 am

Koine is a simplification of Attic. In particular, the dual form of the verbs dropped out, and the optative is almost entirely unused. There are a few other minor points (contractions of some vowels, I think), but I'd estimate that above 95% of what you learn in a New Testament Greek class is directly applicable to Classical (Attic) Greek.
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