Tagged Questions

A Hellenic language principally spoken in Greece.

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4
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2answers
37 views

Help me unpack this Classical Greek word? [closed]

ἁλιπτοίητος Liddell and Scott seem somewhat uncertain how this links to other Greek words, though they affirm the reading as "driven by fear across the sea." My Greek is rusty, and I don't know that ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

How did the ancient Greeks say out loud “1” (which was written in another way)?

I have read about alpha, but back in time there was another notation, using the vertical sign |. I'd like to know how they pronounced it. EDIT: with a bit of more research, I've actually found that ...
2
votes
0answers
41 views

On the etymology of Ankara / Phrygian Άγκυρα

I am wondering whether the Phrygian city "Ankara" (today capital of Turkey) meant really "anchor" in Phrygian? We know it means anchor in Greek, a sibling language to Phrygian with many isoglosses, ...
3
votes
1answer
42 views

Grammatical variation between Attic Greek prose authors

I'm interested in the grammatical variation that is found between prose writers in what is putatively a single dialect of Greek, Attic. Such variation exists on various levels: Phonology: e.g., some ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

Etymology of Ancient Greek deictic -ī

In Ancient Greek, a deictic particle -ī can be attached to demonstratives to strengthen the "this here" meaning: e.g. houtos "this one", houtosī "this one right here". What is the origin of this -ī? ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

original sens of ἑκηβόλος, an epiklesis of Apollon

I was very surprised to learn (in LSJ s.v. ἑκηβόλος) that ἑκηβόλος originally meant "attaining his aim" and not "far-shooter" as I always thought. If the Liddell-Scott-Jones recalls the later ...
4
votes
1answer
94 views

Is the Proto-Indo-European “ǵenh₁-” (to produce) related to “gʷḗn” (woman)?

I noticed a possible connection between the Ancient Greek "γυνή" and "γένεσις". I think semantically a relation between the two terms is plausible. Unfortunately I don't know enough about PIE ...
2
votes
0answers
61 views

Sources for etymologies of Ancient Greek proper names and placenames?

There are good etymological dictionaries for Ancient Greek: if you're searching for the origin of a word, you'll probably find information in Frisk, Chantraine, or Beekes. But if you're looking for ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

what would be the hypothetic result of *βεβλεπνται in Ancient Greek?

I'm talking about the third plural form of medium/passive perfect, in Ancient Greek. My grammar explains that some very simple verb like παιδεύω may be inflected that way : 1S πεπαίδευ-μαι > ...
1
vote
1answer
78 views

Was there an evolution of the greek alphabet in the middle-east?

I recently visited Jordan and noticed that many mosaic are commented with included text. The text seems mostly ancien greek alphabet, but it also contains non greek characters such as C, obviously ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

ephelcystic nu of contract verbal forms in Ancient Greek

Since some verbal forms may have an ephelcystic nu (imperfect.3S : ἐπαίδευε/ἐπαίδευεν), I would like to know if [un/]contract forms too may have this ending, as if we had ἐτίμαεν instead of ἐτίμαε and ...
5
votes
3answers
149 views

Unaugmented contract imperfect in Ancient Greek?

Since unaugmented forms are ancient verbal forms (found by example in Homer), older than the augmented ones, and since vowels contraction is still a "work in progress" at homeric times and will be ...
4
votes
1answer
81 views

Boustrophedonism effects

From the looks of it Boustrophedon texts should be more efficient to read. However, I can't find any modern day research regarding its effects and reasons why it would have fallen out of use in ...
7
votes
2answers
220 views

What did the Greeks and Romans believe about language relationships?

The ancient Greeks and Romans had no concept of historical linguistics or of the Indo-European language family. However, it would have been noticeable to anyone who spoke even a little of both Greek ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

vowel contraction after “προ-” preverb in Ancient Greek

Like περι-, προ- preverb keeps its final vowel when added to a radical as in "προ-αιρέω". But my French->Ancient Greek dictionary, the old Bailly, tells me that προβάλλω becomes either προέβαλον ...
0
votes
0answers
73 views

Online Modern Greek dictionary that puts imperfective and (“dependent”) perfective verb stems together?

Does anyone know of a good online Modern Greek dictionary that puts imperfective and perfective (also called "dependent") verb stems together? For instance, the imperfective of βλέπω /'vlepo/ "SEE" ...
5
votes
3answers
766 views

Why are many ancient languages so complicated compared to many modern languages?

Many ancient languages have a structure that is more complex than that of the "respective" modern languages. Modern languages like English have simpler structure, without case, gender or declination, ...
1
vote
1answer
141 views

What is the etymology of the Greek word “σαββατισμός” (sabbatismos)?

This is connected to a question on BH-SE. I have found a little in regard to the etymology of this word. For example, the root is obviously Sabbath. What significance does the greek ending "-ισμός" ...
8
votes
3answers
292 views

Is دشمن (“enemy” in Persian) borrowed from δυσμενής (“hostile” in ancient Greek)?

A couple of years ago I encountered the world δυσμενής, meaning hostile, in an ancient Greek text I translated. If I recall correctly, this can be pronounced as "dusmenè". This always intrigued me, ...
-1
votes
1answer
157 views

schools of linguistics Greeks and Romans [closed]

Which arguments can prove that the Greeks and Romans did not practice linguistics in its modern meaning ?
3
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1answer
168 views

Can a syllable be open before a lenghtened consonant?

This thread (related to this problem) can be split into two questions, the first one being restricted to Ancient Greek, the second one being more general. (1) Let's be, by example, two syllables, the ...
4
votes
1answer
185 views

geminate or long consonants in Ancient Greek?

I can't decide whether Ancient Greek had "geminate" or "long" consonants. In other words did γλῶττα stand for [glˈɔːt̪.t̪a] or for [glˈɔː.t̪ːa] ? The difference between geminate and long consonants is ...
5
votes
2answers
176 views

Feelings about formerly more civilized foreigners' words

Is there a name for the phenomenon described below, whereby even after centuries of development into erudite thinking, people feel that words that come from formerly more civilized foreigners are more ...
4
votes
0answers
80 views

Quantitative metathesis in other languages than Ancient Greek?

The Attic-Ionic dialects of Ancient Greek underwent a sound change whereby, in a sequence of a long vowel followed by a short vowel, the quantities were switched: -V:V- became -VV:-, e.g. -e:o- > ...
6
votes
1answer
201 views

How do we know that Ancient Greek didn't have ejectives?

Ancient Greek had a three way contrast between voiced, unvoiced, and aspirated stops. It seems to be assumed that the unvoiced stops were pulmonic, but how do we know this? A fact that may or may not ...
1
vote
3answers
207 views

Etymology of the Biblical Greek words “sigao” and “sige”

Does anyone have any leads as to the etymology of the greek words sigao (strongs # 4601) and sige (strongs # sige) which are translated silence and silent respectively in the new testament?
4
votes
2answers
962 views

What is the history of the word “addict”?

Usually the origins of the word "addict" are referred to Latin. Once I read somewhere that such word could have greek roots, from "diké", justice, rights. Something like "adiktoi" could mean "those ...
4
votes
2answers
128 views

Did the Greek adverb for “late” evolve into a preposition meaning “after”?

The Greek work opse meant late in Homer. By the time of Philostratus (3rd c. A.D.) it sometimes had the meaning of too late. Of course, if someone arrives too late for an event, they arrive "after" ...
2
votes
1answer
368 views

Why do the sounds [ks] have their own single letter 'X' in European languages?

It seems that the original intent of the letter 'X' was to pronounce the phoneme [k^h] in Classical Greek but evolved over time to be [ks]. My question is: How come there are so many European ...
3
votes
1answer
458 views

How many of Latin words have Greek roots?

I was wondering how many of Latin (both Classical and Medieval varieties) words have Greek roots. Is Greek the common root of most IE languages?
6
votes
5answers
224 views

Is the second “ρ” in “διάρροια” from “διά” + “ῥέω” due to an assimilation?

Or which phenomenon is causing this? Is there a known reason or rule behind this?
6
votes
2answers
280 views

Was there a Greek or Latin name spelled “Jesus” or similarly before the advent of Christianity?

Many of the originally Barbarian names in history were Christianized. Many Christian saints with Slavic/Germanic names were given similar-sounding Greek and Latin names. In this way "Kuzma" ...
5
votes
2answers
776 views

Why did English borrow more from Latin and Greek than, e.g., German did, in scientific and philosophical subjects?

Is there any known reason why the scholars of the time didn't think it easier to use calques, as for instance the Germans did for the names of some of the basic chemical elements?
3
votes
1answer
138 views

Correct Alexamenos Graffito Translation

I am researching the "Alexamenos Graffito" from Rome and the various opinions of what the correct translation of the Greek inscription should be. I know some believe it is "Alexamenos worships (his) ...
13
votes
3answers
329 views

Did Ancient Greek have a rising intonation for questions?

Unlike English, Ancient (e.g. Attic) Greek does not reorder words to formulate a question. The particle "ἆρα" does modify a statement into a question, but is not always present. In that case, I ...
11
votes
2answers
464 views

Did Georgian ever have a native word for “dolphin”?

During my time in Georgia one word came to puzzle me and I'm still thinking about it: დელფინი (delp'ini) "dolphin" Wiktionary says this comes from Greek via Russian. The thing is Georgia is on ...
5
votes
2answers
501 views

How does the initial consonant in “Jupiter” and “Zeus” come from the “d” in PIE “*dyew-”?

Jupiter, is from Proto-Indo-European *dyew- (“sky”) (whence also Latin diēs). Cognate with Ancient Greek Ζεύς (Zeus), Hittite 𒅆𒍑 (sius), Sanskrit द्यु (dyú). The nominative Iuppiter comes ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Why is “Aurora Borealis” from Greek, but “Aurora Australis” from Latin?

In astronomy we have the Aurora Australis in the south and the Aurora Borealis in the north. According to Wikipedia, auster is in fact the Latin equivalent of the Greek νότος, or southern wind. ...
16
votes
4answers
6k views

What are the historical origin of terms for north, south, east and west?

In the course of researching the etymology of the word "Australia", I was trying to find the Latin words for north and south (the cardinal directions). I found some websites that translate north as ...