Questions tagged [greek]

A Hellenic language principally spoken in Greece.

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Why is Papadopoulos such a common surname in Greece? [migrated]

(I'm not sure if this is the correct Stack Exchange to post this question, if even there is one. Please migrate if needed.) Papadopoulos is the most common Greek surname. It means "son of a priest". ...
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Relation between keltoi and galatai?

The ancient Greeks used both words and appeared to have originated both. The first form appears first in 517BC by Hecateus of Milietus. The word is still known in the 12th century AD where it's used ...
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from ekwos to ippo : transition from kw to p in greek

I can't understand how the transition from kappa-digamma to pi-pi happened in the transition from ekwos (same etymology as latin equus) to ippo. I mean how did the prononciation change ? Because is ...
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Resources on Middle Eastern Common Greek in the First Century?

QUESTION: 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. GOAL: My primary ...
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Why is Greek alphabet left-to-right?

The Greek alphabet and all of its child systems such as Roman, Cyrillic, and Gothic are conventionally left-to-right writting systems. But why is that, considering it comes from the Phoenician ...
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How did Ancient Greek 'πυρ' become English 'fire?'

fire is derived from the Ancient Greek πυρ. My question is: how did the plosive become a fricative? I believe pyre is also derived from πυρ; why is it that pyre didn't also undergo this "...
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Is there any commentary on the etymology of the Tocharian word empreṃ?

The Tocharian word empreṃ 'truth' is often marked as being of unknown etymology. I cannot find a lot of commentary on it except from that it could be a middle Iranian word meaning 'confidence'. So, ...
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360 views

Gemination in languages not supposed to have gemination? (especially Greek)

I have been listening to the song "Dinata Dinata" by Antique, and I noticed something. You see, I'm a Native Hungarian speaker, and my native language contains gemination. So what did I notice? In ...
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Which came first in Greek: λήθη, or Λήθη the proper noun?

i.e. λήθη: a noun meaning oblivion or concealment, and Λήθη: a proper noun referring to a river in Greek myth. My question is this: is this noun a reference to the mythological river, or was the name ...
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Why are there words meaning both “breath” and “life/spirit” in so many languages?

In Ancient Greek, πνεῦμα (pneuma) can mean "breath" as in "a breath of air" (literal) or "divine breath of inspiration" (figurative); it can also mean "life", "spirit", and "vitality" as demonstrated ...
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What is the etimology of the ancient greek word “εὑρίσκω”

I can't seem to find and Indo European root for this word. I'm not even sure if it has indo european origins.
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Does “tetrahedrization” make sense?

I am deciding on a spelling of "tessellation composed of tetrahedra" to use in my thesis. There are four choices I know of Tetrahedralization with 3,530 results on Google Scholar and 25,800 on ...
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Why is “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani” transliterated with a Chi in Matthew and Mark?

In Matthew 27:46 (Mark 15:34), Jesus says "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani (σαβαχθανί)", which is translated "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?". Why is this supposedly Aramaic word ...
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Do we have to revise what we know about Thracian?

I have been reading the latest paper on Thracian by C. Brixhe (on the latest Handbook of Comparative and Historical Indo-European Linguistics) and I am really baffled by the conclusion. In the 6th ...
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How did Gk. ταινία “band, ribbon” come from PIE *tn̥-yā- < *ten- “to stretch”?

AHD-IER (Watkin, 2011) P93 gives PIE *tn̥-yā- for Gk. ταινία: Suffixed zero-grade form *tn̥-yā‑. taenia; polytene, from Greek tainiā, band, ribbon. while EDG (Robert Beekes, 2010) P1444: ...
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Meaning of suffix -tai in Greek

In Ptolemy's Geography, two people are mentioned by the name of Thamyditai (6.7.4, pg 402 of this book) and Oaditae (6.7.21, pg 406 of this book) Here's the scanned mention of Thamyditai Here's the ...
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Pattern to Prefixes and Suffixes in English

I've come across a list of English prefixes and remember learning in school about Latin and Greek being helpful for learning words in English based on prefixes/suffixes. I'm wondering though if there ...
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Voiced aspirated alveolar trill

Was there voiced aspirated alveolar trill in Ancient Greek? It was written in some sites in Russian that all Ancient Greek words which began with "rho" pronounced with the sound [rʰ], but it was ...
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Why do some languages distinguish between “identical” and “indistinguishable”, and others don't?

In some languages, there's a very prevalent distinction between different meanings of the English word "same" as in "These two items are the same". For example German: dasselbe / das gleiche Greek: ...
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Why are the scripts of Crete known as “Linear”?

Two famous, apparently related scripts now known as Linear A (which encoded an as-yet undeciphered language) and Linear B (used to write Greek) were discovered on the island of Crete. Why are these ...
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Greek prefix for zero - any examples?

Wikipedia states that the greek prefixes for zero are meden- ouden- Any examples in a modern language? (preferably spanish)
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Initials in Greek

Does modern Greek use initials and/or initialisms? Like similarly to how we might call John Kennedy John F. Kennedy or JFK, or the Federal Bureau of Investigation the FBI.
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Is it possible that the word virgin originally had two meanings?

I wasn't sure whether to post this here, or on mythology stack exchange. Since it deals with the origin of a word, I choose here. But if I am wrong, tell me and I will move it. The originally meaning ...
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Why did some Hebrew words beginning with Yod become transliterated into Latin as “hi?”

This is something I noticed when reading some different older English bibles. Often times, it seems there was originally & traditionally a digraph (I guess) ⟨Hi⟩ where now the more proper letter ⟨...
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Elusive etymology, false cognate?

So I just stumbled upon this beautiful word, Eleusinian(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eleusinian_Mysteries), named after a Greek town. Given they had a history of cool initian rites, and all the jazz ...
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Any proposals for Modern Greek spelling reform?

The orthography of Modern Greek is to a great extent historical and, therefore, complicated. There are multiple spelling variations for [i], [e] and [o] sounds, and awkward digraphs to represent [b], [...
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Why did Greek never develop into other languages like Latin?

The Hellenization of the classical world is one of the biggest events in ancient history, similar to the conquests of Rome in later centuries. Greek rulers held Egypt, Mesopotamia, Turkey, even places ...
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Rules to constructing a proper compound noun in Ancient Greek

I am currently in the process of translating a text from one language into another, and the original uses a compound noun that can either be translated into English as "fly-eating" (losing the ...
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1answer
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Greek: differences between words marked as αρχαιοπρεπής, λόγιος or παλαιότερα

In my dictionary some words are marked with αρχαιοπρεπής (dated, archaic), λόγιος (learned form) and παλαιότερα (more ancient use). What are the differences, if any, between these terms, and what is ...
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Why Did Koiné Greek Still Write Double Letters?

Languages develop double consonants and other quirks for different reasons -- English' double consonants were originally developed because the consonants were doubled in speech, like Latin, and that ...
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How do we get from Greek τρόπος to French trouver?

The French verb trouver (to find/think) can trace its ancestry back to the Greek word τρόπος, which means a turn, manner, style, or figure of speech. Is there any logic to this seemingly disconnected ...
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“yotta” in Greek and Armenian

The Armenian word for seven is "yotta", which sounds suspiciously similar to the Greek prefix for a factor of one septillion (though AIUI it comes from the ancient Greek word for eight, not seven). Is ...
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Evolution in number of words from Greek to Latin to modern languages

I once read somewhere that Greek used, say, three or four words to express an idea; Latin used five or six words to express the same idea; and nowadays we use eight to ten words to express the same ...
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Greek - Arabic language relation

Is there a valid, known link (academic source or even speculation) regarding the Greek and Arabic language, when it comes to syntactic- grammatical or morphological cohesion? I ve only come across ...
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Transliteration-transcription method for ancient Greek & Arabic

I am currently working on a paper that deals with a Psalm from the Septuagint known as the Violet fragment - LXX, Psalm 77.The particular verses i am interested in, are written in Greek uncials, ...
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Why Is It That Ancient Greek Reconstructed Pronunciation Is Always Used For Koine?

By the time of Koine greek, in general, it was much the same as today, but I always see the Ancient Greek pronunciation being taught, why is this? Is is it because most people learning koine in ...
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Reviewing the evidence of the spirantization of β (betacism) in Greek

Although I understand that it is impossible to assign a specific time to any sound change in Greek, I am curious about the spirantization of voiced stops, particularly of beta. I'll present the ...
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Why can “autarchy” be spelled with an “k” while other words not? [closed]

English has a set of words with "ch", coming — more or less directly — from the Greek language. They all have a /k/ sound. character charisma psychology choreography archive Just to name a few. All ...
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Why is there no Ancient Greek noun whose stem ends in an “i”-ending diphthong (like “-ai”)?

Ancient Greek nouns are cassified into three declensions, and we can say that this is largely based on the ending of the stem of the noun. If a noun's stem ends in -ā (or -ē in Attic when not after r, ...
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Greek words with initial “ia” instead of “a” [closed]

Greek verbs with initial #i+H4- from Arnaud Fournet (May 2017) *H4eH4- ‘to heal, guard’: (1)Hurrian a-tt- ‘to guard, protect’ (2) Greek ἰάομαι ‘to heal’ < *y-ā- (3) The question : why "ia" instead ...
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Why does Greek “ναι” mean “yes” while it comes from a PIE root meaning “no”?

According to Wiktionary, the Greek word ναι comes from Ancient Greek ναί, which is a variation of νή, which comes from Proto-Indo-European ne, which means no. Why can a word have the opposite ...
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Are syllable initial consonant clusters pronounced in Ancient Greek?

A number of loan words and New Latin words derived from Ancient Greek have word initial clusters of a plosive+nasal or dissimilar phonemes like /ps/ or /pt/. I cannot avoid aspirating or inserting a ...
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The accentual (Tone) system of Ancient Greek

This question is presented with the help of the sources from Wikipedia. The Greek diacritics were introduced by Aristophanes of Byzantium, which became standard in the Middle Ages. My question is: ...
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How did the Greek aspirates become fricatives?

When I was studying (classical) Greek as an undergrad, we were told that φ θ χ, that is, the Greek aspirate consonants, have the following phonetic values: [f θ χ] and never it was told to us that ...
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Etymology/meaning of (Mount) Kyllene

My unabridged Liddell/Scott does not have any indication of what the name of the Greek Mount "Kyllene" means. Robert Graves in "The Greek Myths" says it means "Twisted Queen." I have seen where he ...
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Turkish kalem: from Anc. Greek or Tocharian?

Usually the Turkish word kalem 'pen' is shown in etym. dictionaries to derive from Arabic qalam, which in turn derives from Greek κάλαμος. However, I noticed that Tocharian languages have the term ...
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Can anyone recommend a good, free, and online Greek-to-English dictionary? [closed]

A translation service is not being requested in the question since they provide word-to-word mappings instead of word-to-meaning explanations. The dictionary may optionally render the Greek word with ...
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what about ophis Python==ahi Budhnya?

in short : is the equation ὄφις Πύθων == अहि बुध्न्य ahi budʰnya widely accepted by scholars ? Python and Ahi Budhnya/Ahirbudhnya are both a famous serpent, the first one in the Greek mythology, the ...
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Etymology of Ancient Greek interrogative particle ἆρα

The Ancient Greek interrogative ἆρα is strikingly similar to modern Persian āyā. Both words exclusively signal yes/no questions, and almost always begin the sentence. There is an accent on the first ...
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Why “agoraphobia” not “agorophobia”?

Greek compounds are usually made by combining the roots of two nouns and inserting a linking thematic vowel when it would result in a sequence of two consonants. The vowel is usually -o-, so we have e....