Iota Subscripts

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Ursinus
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Iota Subscripts

Post by Ursinus » Wed Sep 28, 2016 1:55 pm

How many of you guys pronounce the subscripts when reading or conversing in the Greek? Along similar lines, if you do, how comprehensible to you is audio when it does not pronounce the subscript?
In hoc enim fallimur, quod mortem prospicimus" -- Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Vestibulum: Revised and Expanded

Διορθοῦ με εἰ πλανῶμαι, παρακαλῶ.

Gratia et Pax,

Joannes Ursinus

mwh
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by mwh » Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:26 pm

I don't pronounce them. Most Greeks didn't either.

LeslieD
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by LeslieD » Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:37 pm

I certainly don't converse in ancient Greek. When reading I leave the subscript unpronounced.

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bedwere
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by bedwere » Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:58 pm

I give a hint.

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jeidsath
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by jeidsath » Wed Sep 28, 2016 5:38 pm

Our English words tragedy/comedy and rhapsody/melody show the difference. We get all of them by way of Latin. In Greek they were τραγῳδός/κωμῳδός and μελῳδός/ραψῳδός. Why the difference in English pronunciation?

Because in Latin, τραγῳδός/κωμῳδός came in earlier, during a period when ῳ was still pronounced, becoming tragoedus/comoedus. However rapsōdus/melōdus came into Latin later, when ῳ was the same as ω.

Allen suggests that the difference between ῃ and ει had disappeared by the 4th century BC. ᾳ and ῳ had become α and ω by the 2nd century BC (when Dionysius Thrax says that they aren't pronounced any longer).

If you want to pronounce the iota subscript -- and why not, after editors worked so hard to restore it back into our texts in all the places where it had dropped out? -- Allen suggests that a vowel quality difference probably preserved the graphical distinction. ῳ as [oi] and οι as [öi]. ῃ as [ei] and ει as [ē̩]. He doesn't have a good suggestions for ᾳ and αι.
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

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Ursinus
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by Ursinus » Wed Sep 28, 2016 5:47 pm

Thanks, Jeidsath, for the information. I take it that you pronounce the subscript, then?
In hoc enim fallimur, quod mortem prospicimus" -- Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Vestibulum: Revised and Expanded

Διορθοῦ με εἰ πλανῶμαι, παρακαλῶ.

Gratia et Pax,

Joannes Ursinus

cb
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by cb » Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:27 am

hi, i pronounce it, and i write it adscript not subscript. cheers, chad

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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by jeidsath » Thu Sep 29, 2016 2:36 pm

I pronounce ᾳ ῃ ῳ ηυ as diphthongs. I pronounce ᾳ ῳ ηυ as more open versions of αι οι. Per Allen, I try to differentiate ει and η through quality, with ει having more claim to being long ε than η (though ει still comes out as diphthong for me a lot of the time). So I signal ῃ mostly through the quality of the initial element of the diphthong (perhaps a more open η). Similarly, I try to differentiate ευ and ηυ by the quality of the initial element and openness.

So I personally wind up ignoring Allen's quality recommendations for ῳ and οι while following it for ῃ and ει.
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

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Ursinus
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by Ursinus » Thu Sep 29, 2016 8:53 pm

Interesting, Jeidsath. How does the eta come out for you phonetically then? What exactly do you mean by "open versions" of ai and oi? Do you hold the initial vowel longer than the following one?
In hoc enim fallimur, quod mortem prospicimus" -- Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Vestibulum: Revised and Expanded

Διορθοῦ με εἰ πλανῶμαι, παρακαλῶ.

Gratia et Pax,

Joannes Ursinus

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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by jeidsath » Fri Sep 30, 2016 3:00 am

Here is a demonstration of what I do. I can't recommend that anyone copy me, but it is where I'm at right now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8ui3is9LS0
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

ThatLanguageGuy
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by ThatLanguageGuy » Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:22 am

I almost never pronounce anything (accents, subscripts, etc.) unless I am giving stress to an accented syllable. The pitch accent would sound pretty silly in my opinion. Though, it is how the Ancient Greeks pronounced it, and I understand why some classicists enjoy learning it. But as far as I know, and according to the book "An Introduction to Greek," subscripts weren't pronounced. This book also says accents never affect pronounciation.

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Anthony Appleyard
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Re: Iota Subscripts

Post by Anthony Appleyard » Mon Aug 07, 2017 5:24 am

Ancient pronunciation likely varied with time and place. I pronounce ᾳ ῃ ῳ as a long vowel and an 'i' run together. (Similar sounds occur in Dutch, spelled 'aai' and 'ooi'; I have learned some Dutch.) Pronouncing different spellings the same, encourages spelling errors.

When did the Greeks start writing this iota as a subscript rather than in-line? When did Greek lowercase
start? I get the impression that the classical Greeks and Romans wrote in uppercase only when their best-period classical authors lived.

There is a new discussion started on this point, at http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-foru ... =2&t=67360 .

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