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spoken koine used in church?

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spoken koine used in church?

Postby banofimagefan » Mon Sep 03, 2018 10:03 pm

Hi,
does anyone know of a still living tradition in which spoken koine is used in church these days? Which?
(Biblical Koine texts should be read loudly in whatever dialect, but not texts similar to Biblical Koine.)
Thanks in advance
(Excuse my imperfect English in any case !)
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Aetos » Mon Sep 03, 2018 10:14 pm

In the Greek Orthodox Church, the New Testament is still read in Koine, and as a matter of fact the only version of the Greek NT approved by the Orthodox Church is the Koine. The liturgies however, are written and chanted in Byzantine (later) Greek.
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby banofimagefan » Mon Sep 03, 2018 11:14 pm

Wow. Thanks that was a valuable information.
Now: are there any attempts known to use it as a colloquial speech, be it for training purpose or just for fun?
Because - you might laugh about big thoughts of mine - I am trying to check chances, how or from where one could give (grow) it a rebirth to a real lingua franca again to help Christianity in the long term.

I remember of a practice when (professional) Latin teachers spoke Latin (so why not Koine, too) among themselves, even though this would not grow a culture that easily. Things could be different in a more open, to say any non-professional context, however.

Any thing like this known or imaginable?

Thanks in advance
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Aetos » Tue Sep 04, 2018 12:46 am

banofimagefan wrote:Now: are there any attempts known to use it as a colloquial speech, be it for training purpose or just for fun?

I don't really know for sure; however, I'd be surprised if it wasn't spoken in a classroom setting at seminary as part of the learning process. Latin, of course was the lingua franca of Europe for quite a number of centuries and was made possible by the presence of the Catholic Church. In this day and age though, even Latin has started to disappear from the masses and has been replaced by local languages. In the Orthodox Church, at least here in the U.S., the liturgies are conducted in Greek and English. At least at my church, there are normally 2 liturgies, one completely in Greek, the other in English. Much as I hate to say it, I think at some point, as the older generations pass on, the Greek liturgy will no longer be performed here because, sadly, there will be no one left who understands it.
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Barry Hofstetter » Tue Sep 04, 2018 3:57 am

Instruction in Koine as a living language may be found through:

The Conversational Koine Institute, http://www.conversationalkoine.com

And:

The Biblical Language Center, https://www.biblicallanguagecenter.com
N.E. Barry Hofstetter
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby opoudjis » Tue Sep 04, 2018 7:26 am

Aetos wrote:In the Greek Orthodox Church, the New Testament is still read in Koine, and as a matter of fact the only version of the Greek NT approved by the Orthodox Church is the Koine. The liturgies however, are written and chanted in Byzantine (later) Greek.


... and as a result, the liturgy (including the hymns specific to particular saints, which were written up to a millennium later than the liturgy) is in less colloquial language than the gospels, not more. The Byzantine Greek used in the liturgy is often much more Atticist than, say, Mark or John.
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Barry Hofstetter » Tue Sep 04, 2018 3:31 pm

opoudjis wrote:... and as a result, the liturgy (including the hymns specific to particular saints, which were written up to a millennium later than the liturgy) is in less colloquial language than the gospels, not more. The Byzantine Greek used in the liturgy is often much more Atticist than, say, Mark or John.


That's what I like about the liturgy... but not the only thing. The other thought pertaining to the OP -- does anyone after the service speak in Koine? I think rather Demotiki.
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Aetos » Tue Sep 04, 2018 4:22 pm

Pretty much Demotic, Barry. However, the prayers are said in Byzantine/Koine, e.g. the Lord's Prayer is said (in the Greek service)in Koine by the parishioners, because it's taken directly from the NT. The Psalms are from the LXX and so are read in the original Greek. The rest of the "content" of the liturgy as well as prayers and hymns are pretty much in Byzantine. Here are a couple of examples:

Παναγία Τριάς, ἐλέησον ἡμᾶς. Κύριε, ἰλάσθητι ταῖς ἁμαρτίαις ἡμῶν. Δέσποτα συγχώρησον τὰς άνομίας ἡμῖν. Ἅγιε, ἐπίσκεψαι καὶ ἴασαι τὰς ἀσθενείας ἡμῶν, ἕνεκεν τοῦ ὀνόματός σου. Κύριε, ἐλέησον. Κύριε, ἐλέησον. Κύριε, ἐλέησον.

Βασιλεῦ οὐράνιε, Παράκλητε, τὸ Πνεῦμα τῆς Ἀληθείας, ὁ πανταχοῦ παρῶν καὶ τὰ πάντα πληρῶν, ὁ θησαυρός τῶν ἀγαθῶν καὶ ζωῆς χορηγός, ἐλθὲ καὶ σκήνωσον ἐν ἡμῑν καὶ καθάρισον ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ πάσης κηλίδος καὶ σῶσον, Ἀγαθέ, τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.

Most kids are taught these in Greek School as well as the Lord's Prayer. I remember we ended every session
with:
Ἅγιος ὁ θεός, ἅγιος ἰσχυρός, ἅγιος ἀθάνατος, ἐλέησον ἡμᾶς.(τρίς)
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Barry Hofstetter » Tue Sep 04, 2018 10:33 pm

Aetos wrote:Pretty much Demotic, Barry. However, the prayers are said in Byzantine/Koine, e.g. the Lord's Prayer is said (in the Greek service)in Koine by the parishioners, because it's taken directly from the NT. The Psalms are from the LXX and so are read in the original Greek. The rest of the "content" of the liturgy as well as prayers and hymns are pretty much in Byzantine. Here are a couple of examples:

Παναγία Τριάς, ἐλέησον ἡμᾶς. Κύριε, ἰλάσθητι ταῖς ἁμαρτίαις ἡμῶν. Δέσποτα συγχώρησον τὰς άνομίας ἡμῖν. Ἅγιε, ἐπίσκεψαι καὶ ἴασαι τὰς ἀσθενείας ἡμῶν, ἕνεκεν τοῦ ὀνόματός σου. Κύριε, ἐλέησον. Κύριε, ἐλέησον. Κύριε, ἐλέησον.

Βασιλεῦ οὐράνιε, Παράκλητε, τὸ Πνεῦμα τῆς Ἀληθείας, ὁ πανταχοῦ παρῶν καὶ τὰ πάντα πληρῶν, ὁ θησαυρός τῶν ἀγαθῶν καὶ ζωῆς χορηγός, ἐλθὲ καὶ σκήνωσον ἐν ἡμῑν καὶ καθάρισον ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ πάσης κηλίδος καὶ σῶσον, Ἀγαθέ, τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.

Most kids are taught these in Greek School as well as the Lord's Prayer. I remember we ended every session
with:
Ἅγιος ὁ θεός, ἅγιος ἰσχυρός, ἅγιος ἀθάνατος, ἐλέησον ἡμᾶς.(τρίς)


Yes, if language were the only factor, Greek Orthodox I would be. We used to go to a Greek festival near us that also gave a tour of the church (they had some splendid iconography). Two young men were giving the tour, and I translated the Greek explanation of one of the icons. They said "no, it doesn't say that, we know Greek and use it all the time." I disagreed, whereupon they called over the priest who happened to be nearby. The priest listened, gave them a wry look, and said "He's right, actually." We then had a short but very good discussion, and then we ate. What's a Greek festival without the food?
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby Aetos » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:38 am

Barry Hofstetter wrote:What's a Greek festival without the food?

Not to rub it in, but my wife's making παστίτσιο today! :D
Barry Hofstetter wrote:They said "no, it doesn't say that, we know Greek and use it all the time."

One of the pitfalls of knowing Modern Greek is assuming that words are going to mean the same thing in earlier forms of Greek, which of course is not always the case. Usually the trigger for me is when the meaning I associate with a word doesn't fit the over all context of a passage, then it's time to go the lexicon and/or grammar book. That said, I still get surprised by discovering that even words that seem to fit the context turn out to have different meanings. For example, the word νόμος in Herodotus means "custom" or "practice", whereas in modern Greek, the meaning has evolved to "law". When Herodotus is describing the customs (νόμους) of the Persians, I'm wondering "Wow, are these all laws?" Then I looked up the word. Another one: when I first saw the word "αποκτείνω", I thought "Is this the original form of "αποκτώ?". αποκτώ in Modern Greek means "acquire", whereas "ἀποκτείνω" of course means "slay" and doesn't exist in Modern Greek. From the context it was clear that ὅστις ἀπέκτεινε was not acquiring someone.
Anyway, enough of my ramblings. I'm glad you enjoy the beauty of the liturgies and the iconography!
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby opoudjis » Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:27 am

Barry Hofstetter wrote:
opoudjis wrote:That's what I like about the liturgy... but not the only thing. The other thought pertaining to the OP -- does anyone after the service speak in Koine? I think rather Demotiki.


The Greek used by the Church outside of the liturgy has traditionally come from a baseline of liturgically- and Byzantine-coloured Puristic. The Greek of sermons (often sent out to the priests from the bishop, or read out from sermon collections) is now a lot more vernacular than it used to be; with Puristic banished from public life a generation ago, there's little space for Atticism in public discourse. You will see some morphological archaisms as shibboleths in bishops' speeches and blogs, but both conservative and liberal clergy now have a baseline of Demotic.
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Re: spoken koine used in church?

Postby ἑκηβόλος » Thu Sep 06, 2018 11:00 am

Aetos wrote:
banofimagefan wrote:Now: are there any attempts known to use it as a colloquial speech, be it for training purpose or just for fun?

... I'd be surprised if it wasn't spoken in a classroom setting at seminary as part of the learning process.

In my experience, texts are quoted in the form of the language that they were written in. Discussion and teaching occurs in a language that either / both (and not necessarily both) the lecturers, tutors or students are used to communicating in. As a result, a discussion turns out quite similar to the way that we read some discussions in the classical authours, where quotes from earlier periods and various genres are quoted (recited) in the language of their own composition.
Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird!
No hungry generations tread thee down;
The voice I hear this passing night was heard
In ancient days by emperor and clown:
(Keats, Ode to a nightingale, 1819).
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