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Accents - necessary to learn in order to read?

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Accents - necessary to learn in order to read?

Postby conditionalis » Thu Jul 15, 2004 8:29 pm

I hope this is not too barbaric a question, but -- Mr. Pharr says that the different kinds of accents probably indicated changes in pitch but just how is not known. There then follows rule after rule for transformation of accents from one kind to the next.

I am inclined to ignore these and just worry about which syllables get stresses. This may be wrong from a philosophical standpoint, but as my goal is to read the Iliad, and not write my own epigrams, can I get away with this?
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Postby whiteoctave » Thu Jul 15, 2004 8:38 pm

few people beginning greek learn accents;
fewer people still pay heed of them having learnt the principles;
fewer even still employ such principles when reading greek by orating the text aloud so as to exhibit the shifts in pitch.

if you want to appreciate the true poetic beauty of the Il, however, it is wise just to learn the basic directions in pitch with which the accents direct the words' flow. they were, of course, artificially created by Aristophanes of Byzantium to allow non-Greeks, such as ourselves, to apply the appropriate pitch variants.

~D
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Postby chad » Wed Jul 21, 2004 3:13 am

hi conditionalis, it's your choice as to whether to follow the "university" pronunciation (incorrect historically, but consistently applied and understood by classics teachers) or the "reconstructed" pronunciation (more accurate historically but still speculative in its details). if you want to at least try for a few minutes a reconstructed pronunciation, you can see my "iliad 1" document on this temporary site

http://iliad.envy.nu

(i think i've typed up to line 44) :)
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Postby Baroque1977 » Tue Sep 07, 2004 1:38 pm

As a beginner, it is best to begin your study by mastering the basics of ancient Greek accentuation. This will save you from many headaches in the future. A simple and effective way to do this is to read the section on Accentuation in the Hansen and Quinn textbook. In this text, the rules of accentuation are explained clearly and concisely, and the drills/exercises will provide you with ample practice.

Regarding the pitch accents, you may want to read the introductory section of the Mastronarde textbook. As he points out, there is no clear consensus on how the pitch accents actually sounded, and one is best served by simply substituting a stress accent as does modern Greek.
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Postby chad » Wed Sep 08, 2004 6:40 am

hi baroque, i read this article very soon after beginning greek, and i was instantly indoctrinated and i haven't looked back :)

http://community.middlebury.edu/~harris ... cents.html
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Postby euphony » Mon Nov 06, 2006 9:35 pm

I know this thread is old, but I wanted to offer Philomen Probert's A New Short Guide to the Accentuation of Ancient Greek to those interested in the subject. I have found it useful. It's available from the usual suspects online (Amazon, et al.).
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Postby jk0592 » Tue Nov 07, 2006 12:35 am

I think the rules should be followed, but they seem very abstract when just starting as a beginner (like me). But, as you progress, and you do not have to go very far (or is Pharr !!!? ), you will find that the accents are actually helping understand the meaning of the text.

For example, in nouns of the first declension, how could we differentiate between the nominative and dative cases in a sentence without the accents?
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Postby Hu » Tue Nov 07, 2006 2:24 am

jk0592 wrote:For example, in nouns of the first declension, how could we differentiate between the nominative and dative cases in a sentence without the accents?

By pronouncing the iota subscript, which was pronounced until around 350 BC.
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Postby jk0592 » Tue Nov 07, 2006 3:26 am

You are right about iota subscript. However, if accents are disregarded, it can be assumed that more exotic signs like the iota subscripts also are not taken into consideration.
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Postby Beatus Pistor » Sat Nov 11, 2006 10:50 pm

phpbb
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