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Learning Modern Greek

Here's where you can discuss all things Ancient Greek. Use this board to ask questions about grammar, discuss learning strategies, get translation help and more!

Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Scribo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 8:49 am

Ah, no they're not, sorry.
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby IreneY » Tue Jan 10, 2012 9:30 pm

Well, if the ancient Greek name did not start with a vowel and took the acute (oxeia) accent yes :D . Ρόδος for instance or Κόρινθος. Or, I guess, if you find an older map before we ditched the polytonic system.

The closest one I could find is some maps in this site http://diolkos.blogspot.com/2010/10/10.html but they are not in polytonic. I'll keep an eye out though.
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby pster » Tue Jan 10, 2012 11:23 pm

IreneY wrote:Well, if the ancient Greek name did not start with a vowel and took the acute (oxeia) accent yes :D . Ρόδος for instance or Κόρινθος. Or, I guess, if you find an older map before we ditched the polytonic system.

The closest one I could find is some maps in this site http://diolkos.blogspot.com/2010/10/10.html but they are not in polytonic. I'll keep an eye out though.


Thanks. I don't know what you mean by "polytonic," and maybe I don't want to know. :? There are polytonic fonts, which I only understand for a couple of hours every other year. And now I learn a "polytonic system," but I'm not sure what that is. I can see the words on the maps fine accents and all. :)
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Tue Jan 10, 2012 11:52 pm

I'm not a Hellenist, at least not yet, but doesn't it simply refer to the use of the circumflex and grave accents and breathing marks?
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby pster » Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:58 am

Sceptra Tenens wrote:I'm not a Hellenist, at least not yet, but doesn't it simply refer to the use of the circumflex and grave accents and breathing marks?


Yah. Probably. What year was that?
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Wed Jan 11, 2012 2:25 am

Good question, but one I can't answer. At the least, Ancient Greek is polytonic.

ὁδός - hodós (polytonic, note the breathing mark)
οδός - odós (monotonic, Modern Greek)
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Wed Jan 11, 2012 3:27 am

Seeing that you are studying Ancient Greek, I can only assume that I misunderstood you.
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Noeticus » Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:06 pm

I realise that I may be getting to this thread a bit late, but in any case... I found "Greek: a comprehensive grammar of the modern language - David Holton, Peter Mackridge, Irene Philippaki-Warburton" to be the most helpful and complete reference grammar for Modern Greek. It has helped me a lot.

I think the modern language sounds amazing - its sweet vowels (particularly the o), smooth fricatives... I also really like the sound of consonant combinations like φθ and χθ.

If you go to the tomb of the unknown soldier in Syntagma square, you will see the words: "ΑΝΔΡΩΝ ΕΠΙΦΑΝΩΝ ΠΑΣΑ ΓΗ ΤΑΦΟΣ". With the exception of the word πάσα (although most would understand it) the meaning of every word is perfectly clear to the modern speaker. I'm unsure if a 2 500 year old phrase from any other European language would be so easily understood by its modern speakers.
Παρ' Εὐκλείδη τις ἀρξάμενος γεωμετρεῖν, ὡς τὸ πρῶτον θεώρημα ἔμαθεν, ἤρετο τὸν Εὐκλείδην - "τί δέ μοι πλέον ἔσται ταῦτα μαθόντι;" καὶ ὁ Εὐκλείδης τὸν παῖδα καλέσας "δός," ἔφη, "αὐτῷ τριώβολον, ἐπειδὴ δεῖ αὐτῷ ἐξ ὧν μανθάνει κερδαίνειν.
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Re: Learning Modern Greek

Postby Sanskrit » Wed Apr 04, 2012 2:58 pm

LCN wrote:Finally regarding your comments on Buddhism, it seems to me that you are the Eurocentric one here in that you project a Greek conflation of wisdom with reason onto a way of life that does not seek wisdom through reason.

To shoehorn Buddhism into "world philosophy" is, to use the old saw, a Procrustean effort. Whatever Buddhism may be (revelation perhaps?) and whatever truth it may hold, it's not philosophy. To read that as an insult to Buddhism is to display a deeply-rooted Western prejudice in favor of philosophy.*

And anyway there's nothing European about ancient Greece, which makes the charge even more ill-fitting.


*In fairness I'm winging it a bit here with regard to Buddhism but I believe I am correct.


There is something what is called Buddhist philosophy, a lot of it actually developed as a defence against other doctrines and not necessarily as a search for the truth. Nonetheless, the Indians developed elaborate theories of logic and epistemology, so there was definitely a philosophical tradition. Even as early as in the Mahabharata different debates between scholars were said to have occured. In Hinduism, the word jijnasa is used which means a "thirst for knowledge" and mumuksatva "a desire for liberation" and the Buddhist also put emphasis on the "right view."

But you are right to say that Buddhism (and other Indian traditions) go beyond the scope of philosophy, concepts like karma and reincarnation are defintely religious doctrines. Some people do look at the eastern traditions with western glasses and reduce the Indian traditions to mere philosophy and psychology, while the religious apects of the Indian traditions get sanitized to make them more palatable for the modern man. I think this somewhat true for the Greek tradition too, from all that we know about Greek culture, religion and thought, philosophy does get romanticized.

I agree with Heidegger that the value of the Indian traditions, which for him was Buddhism, lies in the fact that they are not merely philosophical. But this shouldn't take away the fact that India also has a very long and interesting history of philosophy and debate culture which developed within the religious traditions of the country.
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