Firstly just to say that i think this site is magnificent and an excellent example of things which can be done with the web.
Now down to the sticky part. Ive just started to have a look at greek - something ive alsways wanted to do - with White's first Greek book. This will be a self-study jobby on the side as I have no courses available to me.
Apart from the nightmare verb moods
and the three persons and the same old disastrous declensions as latin, im extremely puzzled by the accents in Greek. Let me explain, my only real understanding of diacritic marks comes from Spanish, French and a bit of latin. I couldnt grasp the use of the accents in the first greek book. For example in French the accent only tells us the sound of the vowel for as I assume in Greek if it is a long or a short sound. In Spanish however the sound of the letter is always pure and the accent only serves to indicate the stressed syllable if it doesn't fall on the standard penultimate. The impression I got was that Greek accents were a combination of the two, but im really not sure. I would be extremely grateful if anyone could clear this up for me.
When I get a combination foa ccents in the word i really don't know how to pronounce it and Im really just guessing. I can see that later this is going to cause me real problems with the pasts etc.
Also, do we have much of an idea about how this greek actually sounded? Is there any way in which I as a self-study learner could orientate myself?
If anybody could throw some light on this I would be extremely grateful.
Thanks in advance