Homeric Greek dictionary

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Homeric Greek dictionary

Post by aretay00 » Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:51 pm

I'm studying Homeric Greek, as my profile indicates.

I am wondering which dictionary to buy. I know, from other posts, that "A Lexicon of the Homeric Dialect" by Richard Cunliffe is a valuable resource. I know about the Liddell & Scott. So I have two questions:

1) Is Cunliffe's text the best dictionary available for a committed beginner?

2) Is the LSJ worth getting too, if I plan on continuing my Homeric studies for quite a while? (I would like to, at some point, be able to read Sappho's Aeolic as well.) How much information on Homer is in there?


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Re: Homeric Greek dictionary

Post by jswilkmd » Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:32 pm

I have Cunliffe, Middle Liddell and Bauer, Arndt, Gingrich and Danker and each serves its purpose. For Homer, Cunliffe beats Autenrieth and Liddell HANDS DOWN. For Biblical Greek, BAGD beats Liddell HANDS DOWN. But Liddell is a good, all-around Greek lexicon, particularly for Attic classics, such as Tragedy, Xenophon, Plato and the like, which are not well-covered in Cunliffe or BADG. And if you plan on Aeolic, Liddell is essential.

So, it all comes down to what kind of Greek you plan to read and how cheap you can get the books for.

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Paul Derouda
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Re: Homeric Greek dictionary

Post by Paul Derouda » Sat Jun 25, 2011 7:19 pm

I have LSJ, Middle Liddell, Little Liddell (I don't need all three, but each time I thought I needed an upgrade... ;) ), Cunliffe and Autenrieth.

If you have Cunliffe, you don't need LSJ, Middle Liddell or Little Liddell to read Homer. I agree with jswilkmd that if you need one dictionnary to read just Homer, get Cunliffe.

The reason I like Autenrieth is that it's really quick to use. The entries are really short and you find what you looking for quickly, especially with commoner words that tend to have really long entries in other dictionnaries. You don't get any details or any nuances, so I woulnd't recommend it as a your only dictionnary, not even just for reading Homer.

Autenrieth and Cunliffe include basically all and nothing but the vocabulary of the Odyssey and the Iliad, so it's of little use for anything else, expect perhaps a little for Hesiod and other (early) epic.

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