Questions tagged [greek]

A Hellenic language principally spoken in Greece.

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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 ...
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How would the Ancient Greek noun λόρδων decline, and is the LSJ's definition of it correct? [migrated]

I'm very familiar with Latin declensions, and have the resources necessary for that, but I have found nothing for Ancient Greek that I am able to make use of, especially considering my lack of ...
2 votes
2 answers
106 views

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 &...
14 votes
1 answer
4k views

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 ...
0 votes
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)...
8 votes
2 answers
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How many Latin words have Greek roots?

I was wondering how many Latin (both Classical and Medieval varieties) words have Greek roots. Is Greek the common root of most IE languages?
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1 answer
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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 ...
0 votes
1 answer
97 views

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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68 views

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
115 views

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 ...
5 votes
1 answer
279 views

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 / ...
1 vote
1 answer
141 views

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-.
4 votes
1 answer
520 views

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 ...
6 votes
2 answers
825 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" (...
3 votes
5 answers
20k views

What is the difference between Greek zōē and bios? [closed]

Ancient Greek has two words that are translated as life in English: zōē and bios. What is the difference between them? What are their cognates in other Indo-European languages?
4 votes
1 answer
648 views

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 ...
1 vote
3 answers
185 views

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 ...
2 votes
2 answers
158 views

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", ...
15 votes
3 answers
1k 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 ...
-3 votes
1 answer
161 views

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 ...
9 votes
3 answers
5k views

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 ...
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

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 ...
0 votes
2 answers
649 views

How did the PIE root 'dek-' evolve into the Greek 'dokein' to appear, seem, think' ?

dek- To take, accept. ... [2.] b. dogma, dogmatic; chionodoxa, Docetism, doxology, heterodox, orthodox, paradox, from Greek dokein, to appear, seem, think (< "to cause to accept or be ...
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1 answer
216 views

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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
772 views

Schools of Greeks and Romans linguistics [closed]

Which arguments can prove that the Greeks and Romans did not practice linguistics in its modern meaning?
1 vote
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?
6 votes
2 answers
1k views

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 ...
17 votes
6 answers
18k 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
2 answers
3k views

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 "...
-4 votes
1 answer
126 views

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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
277 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 ancient Greek alphabet, but it also contains non Greek characters such as C, obviously ...
0 votes
1 answer
139 views

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 ...
-2 votes
1 answer
192 views

(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 ...
6 votes
3 answers
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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 ...
-5 votes
1 answer
74 views

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 )?
10 votes
2 answers
4k views

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 ...
4 votes
3 answers
302 views

*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 ...
1 vote
2 answers
787 views

How does the Greek 'legein' relate to PIE *leg 'to collect'?

ENTRY: leg- DEFINITION: To collect; with derivatives meaning “to speak.” Oldest form *le-, becoming *leg- in centum languages. [...] 3. lexicon, logion, –logue, –logy; alexia, analects, ...
4 votes
1 answer
152 views

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 ...
1 vote
2 answers
202 views

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 ...
15 votes
3 answers
3k views

Is there a relationship between Arabic ka'b and Greek kybos?

This is a complete layman's question. Online etymology dictionary says about kaaba: 1734, Caaba, cube-shaped building in the Great Mosque of Mecca, containing the Black Stone, the most sacred site ...
5 votes
3 answers
518 views

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 ...
6 votes
2 answers
631 views

Are there any proposals for a spelling reform of Modern Greek?

The orthography of Modern Greek is to a great extent historical and, therefore, complicated. There are multiple spelling variations for the [i], [e] and [o] sounds, and awkward digraphs to represent ...
3 votes
1 answer
400 views

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, ...
2 votes
0 answers
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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. ...
-1 votes
2 answers
193 views

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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
134 views

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 ...
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

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?
3 votes
1 answer
8k views

What is the history of the word "addict"? [closed]

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 ...
2 votes
1 answer
102 views

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 ...