I would like to ask if anyone knows any decent resources on how native middle easterners, particularly in Judea, might have pronounced greek koine in the first century.


My primary interest is in Koine spoken in in Judea. I have come across some resources, such as Greek: An History of the Language and its Speakers, however, this seems more concerned with overall pronunciation of native speakers and not necessarily others.

Obviously, we can't know everything and many things can only be speculated on, however some things don't necessarily add up.


The primary languages during the time seem to have been Greek, Hebrew, and maybe Aramaic (that is a hot debate.) Hebrew and Aramaic of course would have the same writing system and similar phonology, most likely the same among people of Hebrew lineage, either way.

Hebrew, at the time, taking great care to distinguish vowels and consonants, I would suspect that in speakers of Greek not of straight-European origin, one might see glottal stops creeping in /ʔ/ perhaps, and bilabial fricatives /ɸ/ and /β/, which fell out of use in Hebrew, being replaced by /f/ and /v/ hundreds of years earlier, would probably be the norm.

I would expect the labio-velar approximant /w/ to be extremely well preserved in ⟨αυ⟩, ⟨ευ⟩, ⟨ηυ⟩. Perhaps even a greater creeping in of the phoneme /ð/ in place of /d/ due to Hebrew's heavy use of it.

I would expect to prehaps even see a preservation of the distinction between ⟨ο⟩ as /o/ and ⟨ω⟩ as /ɔ/ or /oː/

I would expect to see a shift from /tʰ/ to /θ/ more quickly, if not for mishearing, at least due to its, to my knowledge, seemingly 1:1 correspondence with the the letter tau ⟨τ⟩ being used for the letter taw when making ⟨תּ⟩ making the /t/ sound and ⟨θ⟩ for ⟨ת⟩ when making the /θ/. Granted, this does not mean that speakers did not adopted the aspirated /tʰ/.

I am struggling to find material that does not focus, per se, on what can be considered the norm. In an illiterate society, it is full-well assumable that a speaker of one particular accent may get someone else to write for them that uses a completely different accent.

I am not somebody who has formal linguistic training, so I don't know, I am just trying to think through it logically.


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