How long have you studied Greek now?

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chad
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How long have you studied Greek now?

Post by chad » Fri Aug 12, 2005 6:03 am

I just realised that I've now studied Greek for 3 years (started Aug 02), which is 2 years and 51 weeks longer than many of my other hobbies.

How long is it that other people here have studied Greek, particularly those studying on your own (like me)?

A separate question would be how much $ you've spent on Greek books... :)

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Post by Kasper » Fri Aug 12, 2005 6:42 am

As per my textkit sign-up date: 05 Nov 2003 I started learning greek and I'm still very much in the process. I'm working through N&H and after the NT I am now trying my hand Plato's apologia sokratou, which takes a bit more effort.

As for the money: about $20, a couple of secondhand books. Most things I've read were provided textkit, gratias vobis, and the NT was a present from my parents.
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”

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Post by chad » Fri Aug 12, 2005 6:52 am

$20? crazy. Just on the basis of my 1 metre or so of OCTs (around $70 new here in Sydney) and my stack of Loebs ($50 here in Sydney), plus the big dictionaries 2nd hand, I'm guessing I've thrown away around $3k to $5k.

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Post by RepublicFan » Fri Aug 12, 2005 11:06 am

A year, sporadically, until the summer -- I was inspired to dig in deeper so I could read a dialogue of Plato as well as the New Testament.

I've been using Chase and Phillips A New Introduction to Greek, and though it is difficult the work seems to be paying off. It was $13.

You could say I've spent $140 on green Loebs in anticipation of reading original texts of Hesiod, Homer, and Plato. I have another Greek book somewhere that is neon green and little mentioned on the net.

I recently got an Intermediate Liddell for $40.

It's encouraging to realize that Greek grows on you. It reminds me of a phrase in the Republic, where a healthy polis rolls on as it grows.
phpbb

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Post by annis » Fri Aug 12, 2005 12:30 pm

Hmm.

I announced Aoidoi.org on October 2002. I had probably picked up Greek seriously about two years before that. So nearly 5 years. Huh.

As for money on books, I have no way to guess. I've been combing through used bookstores since I first learned about them, and I'd been in the habit of buying good deals on OCTs even before I started back in on Greek, in the expectation that I'd get to it eventually (I have a book problem, I know).

Certainly at least US$1000, but I'd not be surprised to find if it were double that. I don't keep track of the costs, so I have no really good way to calculate.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;

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Post by Adelheid » Fri Aug 12, 2005 12:45 pm

annis wrote:I'd been in the habit of buying good deals on OCTs
What are OCT's?


Groet,
Adelheid

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Post by edonnelly » Fri Aug 12, 2005 12:58 pm

annis wrote:So nearly 5 years. Huh.
Is that all? I had assumed you had been a long-time expert. What was your strategy when you first got started, and what has the most helpful study strategy for you?

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Post by annis » Fri Aug 12, 2005 1:07 pm

Adelheid wrote:What are OCT's?
Oxford Classical Texts. These are the most easily available critical editions of Greek and Latin works in the U.S.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;

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Post by annis » Fri Aug 12, 2005 1:27 pm

edonnelly wrote:
annis wrote:So nearly 5 years. Huh.
Is that all? I had assumed you had been a long-time expert.
Well, I'm counting from when the serious study restarted. I did have some Greek in college, and more than one failed attempt to get back into the Greek Groove before the successful restart. Textkit has been vital for my momentum.
What was your strategy when you first got started, and what has the most helpful study strategy for you?
Don't stop.

I realize that probably seems flippant, but it's the most important thing. If I don't read Greek for a few weeks my brain gets creaky.

For beginners: pick a textbook and finish it, and don't dawdle. Don't hop from book to book in a desperate quest for the Perfect Method. No such thing exists. I wasted years on such nonsense.

After a beginning textbook is finished (i.e., you've seen most of the morphology): read difficult works. Grab some work, a dictionary and a grammar, and sit down and read. You might not get it at all. Come back to it later. Several times a month I'm likely to flip open Hesiod or the Iliad at random and try a few lines (moving to an obvious paragraph break - helps with context). I believe this habit of grabbing a few free moments to spend with Greek is nearly as valuable as the more structured time I spend, say, translating the Odyssey passage for the reading group. Massive work once a week only is less good.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;

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Post by germanikos » Fri Aug 12, 2005 10:19 pm

being such a slow learner :) I won't hesitate to admit: 5 years. Learned Koine in Seminary, almost completely forgotten it, then back at it again. Using again the terrible Indonesian translation of Wenham's Elements of Koine Greek. But this book left me totally blank regarding to accents and optatives :( I can read most of the Gospels without opening up the dicos and grammars too much (again, too much, meaning I opened the dicos or grammar 7-8 times each paragraph LOL), but still stumble around when trying to read other texts such as the greek apologets, NT apocryphas, and the one texts of Plato I have (Euthyphro and Apologia).
The amount of money I spent on (exclusively) Classical Greek books: abt US$ 500. Got a very good discount on a new copy the big LSJ from Oxford last year ($70), but still dreaming of the day I can get access to Lampe and Francis Gignac's grammar.
But somebody should ask abt how many free greek-earning softwares I've downloaded ;)

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Post by Bert » Sat Aug 13, 2005 2:14 am

I started about 8 years ago.
My achievements may not compare to that of others' who have had 8 years of Greek.
Other commitments keep me from spending as much time on it as I would like but there have been very few days that I did not do any Greek. I am slowly but steadily improving.
For a 2 year stretch I was to busy to be able to do to much more than keep up what I had learned but since about 3 years ago I have been at it in earnest again.
The amount of dollars spent? I think somewhere between 480 and 540.
Some of my relatives are looking for used books for the 'Greek Geek'. This has resulted in some Hebrew and Latin books ending up on my shelf as well. I guess they figure if they can't read it, it must be something I like. :)

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Post by GlottalGreekGeek » Sat Aug 13, 2005 4:55 am

I started around November 2004. I had made a few forays earlier, but they were of such light nature I do not count them (as in, I looked at some description of the Ancient Greek on the internet or flipped through a book in a store and forgot about it for a month).

I have probably spent a few hundred dollars on Ancient Greek so far. I can probably give a more accurate estimate in a few minutes.

(A few minutes pass)

Around 200$. Aside from books I considered truly essential (such as Cunliffe, which I got from Textkit/Amazon) my main criteria has been what is a good bargain which I might read someday. For example, the other day I found in a used bookstore the Loeb of Hesiod/Homerica for roughly 15$ and an edition of Aristophanes' Clouds with a full vocabulary list for 10$ (the two local used bookstores which deal with Loebs both charge a flat rate of 14.50$ plus tax). My luckiest break so far, I believe, was an Intermediate Liddell-Scott for 28$ plus tax. So far, I have avoided books which are commentaries sans text because I think I should be adept at reading Greek texts first.

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Post by annis » Sat Aug 13, 2005 4:19 pm

Bert wrote: Other commitments keep me from spending as much time on it as I would like but there have been very few days that I did not do any Greek.
It occured to me to mention this, but Bert got to it first.

I'm a single guy with no kids. I have a little more free time on my hands.

Also, I refuse to allow a TV in my home. I've been without for more than 10 years. This leaves me with even more time.
This has resulted in some Hebrew and Latin books ending up on my shelf as well. I guess they figure if they can't read it, it must be something I like. :)
An excellent heuristic!
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;

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$$

Post by Johny Ze » Sat Aug 13, 2005 4:59 pm

Hey everyone, I've been studying Greek for probably around a year and a half. Though, I like Bert, do have distractions that come up here and there that prevent me from continuing my studies. As far as money is concerned, I think I've spent around $2-300 dollars. My best bargain I think, was finding a copy of OCT's Euripides Fables Volume 1, for $9.99 in Canadian funds at some used bookstore when I was traveling across Canada. I need to find a place like that here in Vancouver!

John

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Post by psilord » Sat Aug 13, 2005 5:26 pm

I've studied Epic Greek since this date: 24 Dec 2004. I had done the first ten weeks of Pharr in a row, but then got a nasty case of bronchitis for two months, which caused me to fall off the wagon. So then I just lurked for a while, and perused the information I knew, and then found a study group that opened up and joined. Now I'm back to doing greek regularly.

I'm a youngin around here, but very appreciative of the time spent by the people on this board.

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Post by CanadianGirl » Sat Aug 13, 2005 5:39 pm

I was interested in the replies to this topic. I actually completed a B.A. in Classics about 8 years ago, & put in 1 1/2 years of Grad school before dropping out. My concentration was in archaeology, but of course you have to know the languages too. I kept reading Greek authors sporadically for the last few years before deciding to go back to school to get language teacher's certification. You really do have to keep up with it, but I think once you have a solid grounding, you will remember the basics. As for the money I've invested-don't know . I'm still using the old Loeb editions I used in school. I think you need one good textbook for reference, one good lexicon (the shorter Liddell/Scott is fine), and then pick any author you like. Speaking of which, don't know if you guys care, but I'm glad to see there's increased interest in Pausanias-the archaeologist's best friend. Regards, Paige (CanadianGirl).
Last edited by CanadianGirl on Fri Aug 19, 2005 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How long have you studied Greek now?

Post by Democritus » Sat Aug 13, 2005 6:14 pm

Six years. Three years in high school, two years in college, then a loooong hiatus. Now I am reading Greek & Latin in my free time.

I originally learned Greek using Crosby and Schaeffer, which is a nice little book.

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Post by swiftnicholas » Sat Aug 20, 2005 5:20 pm

It's been just over two and a half years since I bought a secondhand copy of Pharr's book. For a long time I had been curious about the Greek language, but found even the idea intimidating. I decided to pick up a beginner's book to learn the alphabet and maybe (someday) read a few fragments in Greek. I saw a paperback copy of Pharr's book for five dollars, and that turned out to be a great stroke of luck. His essays about beginning with Homer were exactly the motivation I needed, and soon I was hopelessly addicted to studying Greek, and excited that I could be working with one of my favorite poets. Most of the first year was spent using Pharr's book haphazardly. I didn't have many resources, and I wasn't aware of the things available on the internet, so I was really just memorizing what I could and translating chunks of text. I tried doing the exercises in Pharr's book, but I had nobody to ask and no answer key to check my work against. I skipped over too many things, and picked up a lot of bad habits. I started looking through other textbooks of Attic and Koine Greek out of curiosity, and when I discovered Perseus late in 2004, I was suddenly able to translate passages from a wide array of authors without buying stacks of books. But I was thrilled when I finally discovered Textkit at the beginning of this year. I wish I had known there was a place with such helpful and knowledgeable people: it would have saved much time and prevented many bad habits. I hope sometime to have regular internet access so I can join a future Pharr reading group and work through the whole book in a more disciplined and productive manner.

As for books, I have a pretty good knack for finding them dirt cheap. I splurged on new copies of the Intermediate Liddell and Scott, Cunliffe's Lexicon, and Smyth's grammar, all of which I desperately wanted, but couldn't find quickly enough secondhand. Otherwise I have about two or three shelves of Greek books that I've picked up in usedbook stores, usually for less than ten dollars, and a few that were gifts.

~Nicholas

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Post by William » Sun Aug 21, 2005 12:48 am

I've seen some good tips for Greek books in this thread. I've only been studying Greek for about two weeks. I figured with two years of Latin it was about time I started on some Greek. I have a class starting that uses the Chase and Phillips book, but I want to buy some other texts and grammars for variety.

I've used Alibris to pick up hard copies of some pdf texts I've found on this website. In particular, I found a beautiful copy of A Brief Introduction to New Testament Greek by Samuel G. Green for under $20!

Later.

WB

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Post by Kopio » Tue Aug 23, 2005 1:42 am

annis wrote:After a beginning textbook is finished (i.e., you've seen most of the morphology): read difficult works. Grab some work, a dictionary and a grammar, and sit down and read.
I might also mention that you might want to grab a good commentary for the work you are going through :wink: oops!.....wrong thread! :oops:

As for how long.....I started about the fall of 98 at bible college. I have stuck with it quite seriously since then. I am finally starting to feel quite comfortable with the biblical text....but it was a long time coming, and there are still times when it just confuses the heck out of me!

As for how much I have spent on my books....I have gotten unbelievable deals on most all of my books....one of the best being the full set of Kittel for only $100!! Every year the school has a booksale for it's students. A bunch of the profs donate their old books, and so do many of the alumni. They price them at about 1/4 of the retail price so that the students are able to afford them and use them as valuable ministry tools. I probably own $1-2K worth of books, but I have only paid $5-600 for them. A good for instance is Loebs.....when they sell them at school they are usually only $6-7 dollars each (they tend to go quickly though), most all of the grammars and commentarues that I own I got at school for a heck of a deal.

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Post by Carola » Wed Aug 24, 2005 7:19 am

I've only been studying it since the White A Group started (about April or May) and have been rather pressed for time due to Latin studies at Uni. I agree totally with William - don't stop! If you keep plodding on, even though you are slow, eventually you will get there. I've been playing music for many years and I still practice those scales! (and they never get less boring!)
I buy most books 2nd hand, but have spent about $100 on new texts, maybe about another $200 on 2nd hand. Starting Greek at university level next year will blow that figure out to many more 100's.
My Latin library is now taking over the house, I don't want to know what I've spent on those!

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Post by Emma_85 » Wed Aug 24, 2005 12:50 pm

five years, but I've not done too much in the last half year at all... I've been busy... eh...
I hope that I will soon get my act together and start translating some of the Odyssey again and posting here more, but I'm just so busy... plus I'm moving in one or two weeks to Germany again, then stay there a month and off I go again and move to London ... :lol:
When I'll find time for Greek I don't know, but I'm going to try and arrange my uni schedule to include 2 hours for Greek, because I really don't want to forget everything I have learned :) .
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Post by rustymason » Wed Aug 24, 2005 3:34 pm

Off and on for about three years. I need to get more disciplined, it doesn't feel like I'm progressing very fast. But it is Greek, and I can see some progress.

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Re: How long have you studied Greek now?

Post by yadfothgildloc » Fri Aug 26, 2005 4:46 pm

Democritus wrote:I originally learned Greek using Crosby and Schaeffer, which is a nice little book.
Me too. 1 year in college doing C&S, then a year of rael texts. I'm heading into my third year.

I've probably spent about $300 US on books- I have both the Middle Liddel and the big LSJ, Smyth's Grammar, two Loebs (Xenophon IV and Aristotle XIX), two OCTs (Iliad I and II), plus some varying textbooks- Plato's Apology and Euripedes' Alkestis. I spent about 20 bucks printing out the grammar reference from Pharr, and downloaded a bunch from here.

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