Questions tagged [greek]

A Hellenic language principally spoken in Greece.

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Is the ancient word Greek πῐ́θηκος / píthēkos ("monkey") attested with the meaning "dwarf" more than once? [migrated]

I am interested in the obscure etymology of popular Romanian word "pitic" (n.m. "dwarf", adj. "of small stature"). It might have a connection with the Latin line that led ...
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Phonology and Reconstruction of Pronunciation?

What is the closest thing to Phonology that we had in Ancient Times (Classical Greece, Hellenistic, Greco-Roman); is there any solid foundation for the Erasmian Pronunciation (or any other ...
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How did Shiloah (שילוח) become Siloam and Silwan?

What sorts of changes led the Biblical Hebrew name Shiloah (שילוח) to become Siloam (in Greek) and Silwan (in Arabic)? Has this been discussed anywhere? EDITED I removed the word morphological from my ...
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Giving a technical description of Greek Circumstantial / Adverbial Participles

I am looking for a good way to articulate a technical description of the function of Greek circumstantial participles (alternately called adverbial participles). This is my first-pass attempt at doing ...
4 votes
2 answers
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Credible sources for Rho-Rotation?

A teacher of mine recently mentioned a phenomenon in linguistics called "rho-rotation". Across eons and languages if a r/rho sound was next to a vowel it tended to switch postitions and &...
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1 answer
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Can I find an Ancient Greek parsing program that dissects words into their constituent phonemes from reconstructed Proto-Greek?

For example, suppose I enter "πράσσουσα" and it outputs πραάͳοντσα or even, πρααͳ-ο-ντ-σα (root, ablaut, participle marker, feminine). Or I put in πᾶς and it outputs πάαντ-ς (root, 3rdNS)...
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Could lat. circus 'circle' (< gr. κίρκος) and κύκλος 'cycle' be related?

It is well established that the Latin word circus 'circle' is a loanword from Greek κίρκος kírkos 'circle, ring'. But it seems that κίρκος is of uncertain origin. One possibility is that κίρκος would ...
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Origin of بطريق

I read here that the Arabic word بطريق (penguin) ultimately derives from Latin patricius (patrician), through Greek and Aramaic, but I couldn't find any explanation of how and why the shift in meaning ...
1 vote
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Why do Proto-germanic "-as" nouns have e-grade?

Why do Proto-germanic "-as" nouns have e-grade (don't have an ablaut like Ancient Greek τρέπ-ω τρόπ-ος, πέκ-ω πόκ-ος, λέχ-ομαι λόχ-ος, φέβ-ομαι φόβ-ος)?
2 votes
1 answer
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Ioticism in Greek

Are there any good theories about what motivated the pervasive ioticism that developed between ancient Greek and modern Greek? Are there any other languages that went through analogous changes? The ...
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1 answer
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Phonological Development from PIE to Greek

I found the following phonological development (from PIE to Greek) patterns very interesting. *kw>t / __ {e, i} (e.g., *penkwe- > πέντε) *gw>d / __ e (*gwelbhu- > δελψύς) *gwh>th / ...
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1 answer
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Why do Ancient Greek words have "εί" from PIE "e"?

Why do Ancient Greek words have "εί" from PIE "e"? Ancient Greek κείρω <- PIE *(s)ker-.
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1 answer
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Where did the Greek consonant cluster "ps" come from

Where did the Greek consonant cluster "ps" come from? I tried finding resources to track down this fun-sounding consonant cluster but came with no information. I was thinking about a voicing ...
4 votes
1 answer
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Beta vs eszett character difference

How to write the Greek letter beta and the German letter eszett so that they look different enough? I've seen variants of beta with the final arc ending on the vertical line and ones which have a ...
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2 answers
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Does modern greek really nasalise intervowel γγ?

During my previous studies I was introduced to ancient Greek and, among other things, I learned that we believe double gamma γγ was pronounced like a prenasalised gamma, something like "ng", ...
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Linear A morphology

Linear A's lexicon is undeciphered, but I assume we know some things about it's morphology and phonology. I've only found this theory that the language of Linear A had a lot of prefixes. Where can I ...
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How did Greek loanwords with 'ae' come to be pronounced [i] in modern English?

There are a bunch of Greek loanwords in English that orthographically include the vowel sequence 'ae'. Examples include: aegis aether aeon The 'ae' vowel here is pronounced [i] in English, but at ...
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Does the root word mus- in Latin mean "thief"'? Mouse=thief, Moses=Extractor etc

I first got the idea of Latin mus- = mouse = thief from this list My primary question here is whether someone can confirm this, because I have not found any direct words in Latin that indicates that ...
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What is the difference in usage of the word "root" in PIE and its daughter languages?

Now I understand that the conceptions of "root" in PIE and its descendant languages don't fully overlap. However what is the exact difference between them? What confuses me is the ...
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1 answer
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What is the name of Germanic n > m near f / Greek ν > μ near π transformation?

What is the name of Germanic n > m near f / Greek ν > μ near π transformation?
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Pronunciation of P in Latin, versus Ph in Greek

In Latin, it seems some sounds that are pronounced like an "F" in Greek, are pronounced like a "P", why is this? For example, we have the Greek word Phoenicians, and this word ...
-4 votes
1 answer
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Is the Greek ζ related to the Chinese 子?

I wonder whether there is any connections between the two letters. After all, they are both similar to the Phoenician Sade letter, and the Phoenicians were the dominant culture of the Mediterranean ...
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1 answer
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Can Greek form other compound words like "Hyperborea"?

In Greek mythology, the Hyperboreans were a race of giants that lived in a sort of paradise, where the sun shone constantly and everyone was perfectly happy. The land was supposedly located so far to ...
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1 answer
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(Ancient Greek) Dogs and Emptiness, κύων and κενόω, related?

I've been curious about the concepts of emptiness and dogs. I have independently been exploring these and there seem to be some theological/philosophical convergence between Joshua and Caleb from the ...
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Did the Greek term 'κεραία' derive from the Ivri term 'Kera' ( כְרָעַ֨ )? [closed]

Did the Greek term 'κεραία' (keraia) derive from the Ivri term 'Kera' ( כְרָעַ֨ )?
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Did Eureka lose its H?

Archimedes famously proclaimed Eureka, I have found it, but should the word itself proclaim I have lost my H? According to wiktionary and wikipedia, Eureka simply comes from the greek εὕρηκα, perfect ...
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1 answer
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Why did Χ and Ψ have such different sounds in early Eastern and Western Greek?

Why did Χ and Ψ have such different sounds in early Eastern and Western Greek? Which sounds are older? If the Western, why were both Ξ and Χ created to denote [ks] (note that they both appear in the ...
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2 answers
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What is the position of the subject in a Greek sentence, whose word order is VSO?

The following is a Greek sentence Σε ποιόν φίλο νομίζεις ότι μιλάει ο άντρας; To which friend think.2SG that speak.3SG the man Its counterpart in ...
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Some idea of PIE in the ancient world? [duplicate]

Did the ancient Greeks and Romans have the idea (at least partly) similar to the concept the Proto-Indoeuropean language? Many among the elite spoke Greek fluently or at least learnt it intensively. ...
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Are the Paris's names "City of Light" and "Lutetia" connected?

Paris is called City of Light. I wonder whether this name could come from ancient name of the city Λευκοτεκία (Ptolemy). Λευκος in Greek means light or white. And τεκ- root means "stone" (cognates ...
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1 answer
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Resemblance Between Turkish Ablative and Locative, Ancient Greek Ablative, Allative

I was studying some Ancient Greek, and found out that the declination of some irregular nouns are very similar. I started wondering if there is actually a language that is mother of Altaic languages ...
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3 answers
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Why do Spanish and Greek have such a similar phonology?

Is it just a matter of coincidence or did the two language influence each other in some way?
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*h₁éḱwos > ἵππος, (Aeolian) ἴκκος

(in short) What's the epigraphical support to the Aeolian word ἴκκος ? I can't find it in the (very limited) data I can consult. (full story) The history of the Greek word ἵππος ("horse") can be ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Derivation of Greek οὐρά (backside) from PIE *h₁ers (flow)

I'm trying to understand how the Greek word for backside/rear could be derived from the PIE word for 'to flow'. There is a Sanskrit word arsati which means 'to pierce', so the meaning of the PIE root ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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What Languages have historically had Purification Movements? [closed]

Greek has been notorious for trying to purify the language. People tried to conserve the Attic Dialect which evolved to what is today called Katharevousa, which even means purified. Historically, ...
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Etymology of "Talo" (Finnish for "house"). Can it be a cognate of Thalamus?

The word Talo in Finnish means house. According to the wiktionary, it might be etymologically related to talas (boat-shelter). I was wondering if the word might have a common etymology with Greek ...
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1 answer
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Pre-Greek θάλασσα "thalassa" and Turkish talaz

Talaz is a word that means "wave, tornado" in Turkish dialects. dalga means "wave" in Turkish. You can use the following two links to look up the word's attestations throughout history: https://www....
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1 answer
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Is it accurate to say that the Spanish language has no connection whatsoever with the Greek language?

Is it accurate to say that the Spanish language has no connection whatsoever with the Greek language? If not, and if possible, about how much can we safely say there is?
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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 ...
10 votes
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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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2 answers
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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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1 answer
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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 ...
5 votes
1 answer
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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 ...
1 vote
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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 ...