What parts of K-G are most useful for non-German speakers?
As an observation, based on my experience reading, I think that the "rules" of Greek are really not that extensive or complicated. Much of what is presented in Smyth and other grammars consists of "exceptions" to the basic rules, which are not really exceptions, but rather application of the rules in specific contexts, and interaction among the rules. Also, I think the complexities are frequently not so much syntactic principles as lexical attributes of specific words, particularly verbs and their arguments. I think you pick these things up by reading, not necessarily by studying grammar in the abstract.
But you do have to have the fundamental lines of the grammar down cold--you have to internalize it--before you can make sense of anything; otherwise you're liable to go wildly astray. And I certainly don't agree that linguistic analysis--what is wrongly, I think, dismissed as the "metalanguage"--is irrelevant: it's absolutely necessary.
Not sure that makes much sense.
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:One of the things that I don't like about the traditional grammar translation model is that the text books start you with memorization of paradigms. I think that is backwards.
Victor wrote:C. S. Bartholomew wrote:One of the things that I don't like about the traditional grammar translation model is that the text books start you with memorization of paradigms. I think that is backwards.
One of the things I like about the traditional approach is that it does start you off with serried ranks of paradigms. It's often objected that this is not the way you learn your mother tongue. No-one would argue with this, but then you're not learning your mother tongue; you're learning a heavily inflected corpus language, the efficient reading of which depends fundamentally on good mental cataloguing and recall of its paradigms. Until you do learn the paradigms, your reading will be perpetually hampered by the tedious task of identifying what form of the verb or case of the noun etc. you happen to be looking at. Get the elementary necessity of having good recall of these forms out of the way as quickly as possible, and although at the very outset you'll make slower progress in your reading than the learn-the-inflections-as-you-go-along brigade, you'll pretty soon be leaving these learners behind in your more confident wake.
Starting out with basic syntax and learning morphology only as it is needed to understand a clause is fine if that is what you prefer, but it strikes me as more logical and far less time-consuming in the long run to take a combined approach and learn the paradigms alongside your learning of syntax; in other words to do it the way it's been done for donkey's years.
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