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Questions tagged [greek]

Questions concerning Greek (New Testament or older) either in relation to Latin or in itself. New Testament Greek questions should focus on language, not exegesis.

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What would this pun mean?

In a conversation with a fellow Ancient Greek enthusiast, the name "Medusa" (Μέδουσα, "ruling") came up. I made a rather tortured pun by switching the epsilon to an eta, creating μὴ δοῦσα. Now, μή is ...
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How did the “injunctive” work?

According to Wikipedia: Homeric Greek does not have a historical present tense, but rather uses injunctives. Injunctives are replaced by the historical present in the post-Homeric writings of ...
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How was the “elliptical dual” used?

In a comment on this answer, TKR brought up an interesting point of grammar I'd never heard of. Αἴαντε [Ajax-DUAL] is an interesting case. Though readers of Homer since antiquity have interpreted ...
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Hexametric Greek names

A number of Greek names encountered in hexameter follow the syllable length pattern -vv-; consider for example Penelope, Telemachos, Calliope, Terpsichore. The pattern -v-- is absent as the metric ...
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When was the dual number used in Attic Greek?

I have only studied the very basics of Greek years ago, so the question might be simple, but I couldn't find a clear summary anywhere. Attic Greek has a dual number alongside singular and plural. When ...
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Unde “Laelaps”?

Laelaps was a mythical hunting dog that could always catch its prey. The name comes from Greek λαῖλαψ, "hurricane". But where does this word come from? LSJ doesn't provide an etymology, and ...
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Can you please fix the mistakes in translating these prayers from Koine Greek to English (Part 2 of 2)?

This is a continuation from this question I do not know nearly enough Koine Greek to point out what I am specifically unsure about. That said, I do know enough to see that the Greek and English texts ...
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Can you please fix the mistakes in translating these prayers from Koine Greek to English (Part 1 of 2)?

This question is continued here I do not know nearly enough Koine Greek to point out what I am specifically unsure about. That said, I do know enough to see that the Greek and English texts do not ...
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What declension are θορυβος and κοσμος?

I'm curious about what declension θορυβος and κοσμος are in Attic Greek. They appear to be second declension (θορυβος, -ου and κοσμος, -ου), but in the Athenaze workbook (which I'm slowly working my ...
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Ancient greek translation exercise - narration, meaning of singular *οὔτε*

In First Greek Book by John Williams White following passage is given for reader to translate: Τισσαφέρνες δέ, ὀ τῆς Καρίας σατράπης, τῷ Κύρῳ πολέμιος ἦν, τότε δὲ οὔτε ἐστράτευεν ἐπ' αὔτε διήρπαζε ...
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Where does the word “thlypis”/θλυπις come from?

A number of New World warblers seem to have genus names that end in the element -thlypis. It's been hard for me to find information about the etymology of this element; I found a few sources on the ...
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«ἐστὶ γνωρίζειν καὶ οὐδεμιᾶς ἐπιστήμης ἀφωρισμένης» (Aristotle, Rhetoric, 1.1)

Aristotle, Rhetoric, 1.1: ἡ ῥητορική ἐστιν ἀντίστροφος τῇ διαλεκτικῇ: ἀμφότεραι γὰρ περὶ τοιούτων τινῶν εἰσιν ἃ κοινὰ τρόπον τινὰ ἁπάντων ἐστὶ γνωρίζειν καὶ οὐδεμιᾶς ἐπιστήμης ἀφωρισμένης I ...
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«θύων τε γὰρ φανερὸς ἦν πολλάκις μὲν οἴκοι» (Xenophon, Memorabilia, 1.1.2)

Xenophon, Memorabilia, 1.1.2: πρῶτον μὲν οὖν, ὡς οὐκ ἐνόμιζεν οὓς ἡ πόλις νομίζει θεούς, ποίῳ ποτ᾽ ἐχρήσαντο τεκμηρίῳ; θύων τε γὰρ φανερὸς ἦν πολλάκις μὲν οἴκοι, πολλάκις δὲ ἐπὶ τῶν κοινῶν τῆς ...
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When and how was “bombax!” used?

I found the exclamation bombax! in Plautus' Pseudolus (Pl. Ps. 1.3.131), where note 19 specifies it is a Greek loanword (βομβάξ in fact) used as an interjection of contempt. This agrees with what is ...
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What is the function of ποτὲ in «πολλάκις ἐθαύμασα τίσι ποτὲ λόγοις Ἀθηναίους»? (Xenophon, Memorabilia, 1.1.1)

πολλάκις ἐθαύμασα τίσι ποτὲ λόγοις Ἀθηναίους ἔπεισαν οἱ γραψάμενοι Σωκράτην ὡς ἄξιος εἴη θανάτου τῇ πόλει. Source My question concerns the usage of ποτὲ in this clause. I reviewed the LSJ entry for ...
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What was the sibilant in θάλασσα?

The word θάλασσα thálassa "sea" is spelled in various different ways, with different letters replacing the sigmas: some dialects had a tau, for example, while others had a theta. Do we know (through ...
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The spelling of τηλικοῦτος

Why is τηλικοῦτος (< τηλικ + οὗτος) not spelled τηλιχοῦτος? Cf. e. g. ἀφορισμός.
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Why choose σ versus σσ in Hebrew loans?

The LXX provides a wide variety of Hebrew, Aramaic, and other Semitic words transcribed into Greek. Most of the transcriptions are straightforward: the letter lamedh ל, for example, is always ...
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Was the name “Sasan/Sassan” often spelled with a double S in Latin or Greek?

A question on ELU (“Sassanian” vs. “Sasanian”) brought up the fact that the name of Sāsān has often been spelled in English with a double S in the middle: "Sassan". (The same goes for related words ...
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What's the Latin or Greek for ladybug?

I'm curious whether we know the Classical Latin or Greek names of the ladybug. I can't find the word in any of the dictionaries I have access to at the moment, and googling turns up this reddit thread ...
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Paraphrasing Prometheus Bound (Greek)

In Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound I want to paraphrase these lines in Greek: PROMETHEUS [152] Oh if only he had hurled me below the earth, yes beneath Hades, the entertainer of the dead, into ...
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Hesychius quote: where are those words from?

Sappho Voigt 117A Campbell 117A number 2 (Campbell has two 117As, one is a quotation from Michael of Italy, the same as Voigt 194A, and the other one is Voigt 117A) is a quote from Hesychius, which ...
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Sappho Lobel-Page 136: to amend, or not to amend?

The fragment is reported by the tradition as: Ἦρος ἄγγελος ἱμερόφωνος ἀήδων Or sometimes with ἡμερόφωνος. It would seem we just need to fix a psilosis for the third word. However, Edmonds and ...
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Are there attestations of Greco-Latin contact languages from antiquity?

When speakers of different languages meet they often develop some contact language or pidgin containing elements of both languages. Surely speakers of Greek and Latin met in the antiquity at several ...
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The tradition for Sappho Lobel-Page 144

Here is the fragment as it appears in Voigt's edition: Bergk gives the text: μάλα δὴ κεκορημένας Γόργως and the critical note: So Voigt seems to say the one codex for this, which is curated (?)...
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Use of Greek article in Latin to clarify use of foreign indeclinable nouns

This question concerning the pluralization of letter names has led me to ask a somewhat related question on the use of Greek to clarify indeclinable nouns in Latin. The background to this question is ...
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What sort of Greek words are regularly distinguished only by tone?

In the postscript to this answer, Varro comments: …the L&S entry for ἰχθυβολος shows two possible accents, a paroxytone ἰχθυβόλος for an active meaning, and a proparoxytone ἰχθύβολος for a ...
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ἰχθύβολος ἄναξ, Fisher King (Greek)

Would "ἰχθύβολος ἄναξ" be a correct translation of "Fisher King" into Ancient Greek? (I want to use a derivative of ἰχθύς plus ἄναξ, not βᾰσῐλεύς)
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How can I look up words with digammas?

(Digammas? Digammai? Digammata?) This question revolved around a dialectal form that I'd never seen before. Normally when encountering a new Greek word, Attic or otherwise, my first instinct is to ...
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Sappho Lobel-Page 39: μάσλης vs. μάσθλης

Text: ‹–u–x–uu–› Πόδας δέ ποίκιλος μάσλης ἐκάλυπτε, Λύδι- ον κάλον ἔργον. Apart from "WTF Edmonds, tradition is unanimous on ἐκάλυπτε (says Voigt, Edmonds has different opinions) and ...
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About Sappho Lobel-Page 119

Tradition: ἡμιτύβιον σταλάσσων Needed changes: Psilosis to ἠμιτύβιον; Changing to neuter gender: στάλασσον. Changes I cannot motivate: Edmonds writes στέλασσον, why would that be? From Lobel-...
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About Sappho Lobel-Page 101

This is kind of a mess. Let me first report how I tackled it when I first translated all (or most) of Sappho. Below is the translation of an extract of the Paracritical note I made back then, the ...
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Why is the ϝ' in Sappho Lobel-Page universally thought to be a female (AFAIK at least)?

Here is the amended text, in almost the Lobel-Page version: ἀμφὶ ‹δ'› άβροισ‹ιν› λασίοισ' εὖ ‹ϝ'› ἐπύκασσεν The ‹δ'› is a correction from the tradition's λάβροις, the ‹ιν› fills in a hole in the ...
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About the part in cruces of Sappho Lobel-Page 46

The part of fragment in the title reads: κἂν μέν τε τύλαγκας ἀσπόλεα Now, the only easy amendation that comes to mind here (other than erasing the space after τε) is κἂν->κὰμ. That gives us three ...
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About Sappho Lobel-Page 104(a)

The tradition for this fragment is a horrible mess which I will detail in an addendum at the end (modulo updates) of the question by pasting the critical note I prepared this morning for it. Line 2 is ...
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Do non-Attic-Ionic dialects distinguish the accusatives of the ἀσπίς and χάρις types?

In Attic-Ionic Greek, nouns with dental stems show two types of accusative singular endings, depending on the position of the accent: If the accent is on the final syllable of the stem, the ...
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About an Athenaeus quote marginally related to Sappho

Here is the quote: ἐκαλεῖτο δέ τις καὶ βαλανωτὴ φιάλη, ἧς τῷ πυθμένι χρυσοῖ ὑπέκειντο ἀστράγαλοι. Σῆμος δ᾽ ἐν Δήλῳ ἀνακεῖσθαί φησι χαλκοῦν φοίνικα, Ναξίων ἀνάθημα, καὶ καρυωτὰς φιάλας χρυσᾶς. ...
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About Sappho Lobel-Page 152

Looking at this in different editions, you find μεμειχμένα in Lobel-Page, Voigt (whence the above snippet), and Campbell, μεμειγμένα in Edmonds, and μεμιγμένα in Bergk. None of those offer any "...
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What is up with these codices?

Sorry for the vague title, but that is really the question. The problem is with the manuscript sources for Lobel-Page incerti auctoris 24. From Edmonds on, the sources are reported as: ...
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What is the equivalent of “Making someone feel he is indebted” in Greek?

There is a behavior that can arise when one does a favor for another person and after proceeds to put that person in a position they owe them something. Not to conflate in the "debt" or "indebtedness"...
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About P.Oxy. 1787 fragment published in Lobel's Σαπφοῦς μέλη

In the above picture of P.Oxy. 1787 frr. 1+2, I traced blue lines where I think I can see the joint between fr. 1 and the fragment published in the book IV section of Edgar Lobel's Σαπφοῦς μέλη. There ...
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Figuring out the grammar of Edmonds 57 (Edmonds' version of the part in cruces of Lobel-Page 46)

A bit of background on the fragment. This is a quotation by Herodian. The manuscripts, according to Bergk (frr. 56 & 82), give it as: ἐγὼ δ' ἐπὶ μαλθάκαν τύλαν σπολέω μέλεα· κἂν μέν τε τύλαγκας ...
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Tracing apparent book-IV colophon not found in Voigt but found in a Spanish Sappho book based on Reinach's French edition

Ah, here we are again. The Spanish edition I mentioned in a recent question has produced another piece of trivia. Here is the offending fragment, numbered 89: Σαπ[φοΟί με[λών δ'? Apart from the ...
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How would I emphasize a definite noun? (Greek)

Suppose I want to be particularly emphatic about a noun: "the Fates themselves must have turned against me!" In Latin, I'd use some form of ipse; in Greek, my first instinct is αὐτός. But I've also ...
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182 views

Did any Ancient Greek words have intervocalic /h/?

Ancient Greek (some dialects at least) had a phoneme /h/, written with a rough breathing mark on vowels. Did this phoneme ever occur between two vowels, or only word-initially and after consonants? ...
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Identifying alleged Sappho fragment from mishmash on otherwise generally good online resource

I'm back with another question like this one, to which I leave the background part. So among the sources I found while researching Sappho back in the days is The Complete Poems of Sappho, which I am ...
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Identifying corrupted Sappho fragment or mention of Sappho found in just-newly-found-online Spanish edition of Sappho

OK, so this question is perhaps somewhat weird, but I have no idea where to start, so here I am. Let me give some introduction. Me, languages, and Greek Let's start very far back. As my blog ...
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About P.Oxy. 1787 fr. 9

Bibliotheca Augustana reports a fragment in book 1 of Sappho which, it says, is from P. Oxy. XV (1922) nr. 1787 fr. 9, and reads: ]ο δέρκεν ἐπώμοσσ[ ]ν ἔτι, τὰν παῖδα δε[ ]βρ[.]ταν κἀγχερριθ[έτ-...
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A few questions about a Lobel-Page critical note

In a critical note by Lobel-Page, I read: κάλαις ὔμμιν cod. A, quo retento τὸ νόημ[μα] ci. Bekker. quod quamvis cum grammatici verbis aptius congruere videatur, tamen ob ν ἐφελκυστικόν positionem ...
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About Sappho Edmonds 89 Campbell 48

General background What I gather from Edmonds is that the fragment at hand is found in a letter written by Iulianus (Julian the Apostate?) to Iamblichus, and the "offending" part of the letter reads ...