Anyone Interested in Ancient Greek?
New Testament, or “Koine,” Greek is the easiest version of the Greek language to learn. It bears many similarities to Classical Greek, the language of Homer and Aristotle, and the modern Greek used today.
Pretty much, learning Koine Greek without paying for university classes is a nightmare. There isn’t a “Rosetta Stone” or even a decent, all-in-one book for learning Koine Greek. That’s where I think Duolingo can help.
As a seminary professor with lots of experience teaching Greek and other ancient languages, I would love to contribute to a Koine Greek course on Duolingo!
If you’re interested in learning Koine Greek (or any other ancient language, for that matter) reply to this post or up-vote.
Did you know:
*25% of English words have Greek origins
*Greek writing spans 34 centuries
*With Koine Greek you can read the New Testament in its original language!!
Disclaimer I won't be able to work on it much until summer 2014, that's when I'm retiring.
“Did you know” facts taken from: http://www.uta.edu/english/tim/courses/4301w99/lge.html
From the responses, it appears there is sufficient interest to propose a course in Koine Greek.
Since there are at least a half dozen people who might be interested in helping with Greek course development, perhaps we could touch base next summer to see if you still had an interest in working on a proposal to the Duolingo team.
In any case, the course would have to be set up after Duolingo’s transition from the current limited beta form of the incubator.
To set up such a course would require using a free Greek Unicode font, like the New Athena Unicode font (http://ucbclassics.dreamhosters.com/djm/greekkeys/NAUdownload.html) , assuming this is compatible with Duolingo’s software platform.
It would be helpful if some slides could be put into the course platform to give verb paradigms and some simple grammatical explanation.
To accomodate both users interested in ancient (Attic) and users interested in Koine (Hellenistic/New Testament) Greek, perhaps page references (for further study) could be made somewhere in the course to Mounce, Basics of Biblical Greek (the standard class textbook for New Testament Greek) and to Betts’ Complete Ancient Greek and Complete New Testament Greek (possibly the best books for private self-study). That way the user could find more examples and explanation slanted toward the particular form of Greek he or she had greater interest in.
Anyone on the Duolingo team or the user community have any further thoughts?
I’m new here and would welcome any input to get me up to speed on how things work with Duolingo.
I'm mainly familiar with Attic Greek, but I could probably help with Koine if I refreshed a bit. I'm curious to see how the Duolingo folks will deal with different dialects.
I would like to, but the incubator (not surprisingly) doesn't have it as an option. I hope it will be added in the future.
Well, now it is in a limited beta for testing. Soon, from what I understand, users will be able to create courses from any language A to any language B, but not now. Even then, the team might still try to control what courses are created simply for quality purposes.
You might want to find another few people who would be willing to help you create the course. It is not a job meant for one.
And you can apply to the language incubator: For speakers of 'other', click 'apply to contribute'. Then it takes you to a separate page. On the language list it has an 'other' category where you can type 'koine Greek', etc
I think that, at this point, that only applies to native language (and I'm pretty sure that no one's native language is Koine); you still have to use the incubator to teach one of the 6 languages that are already available. At least until the end of the year.
You can also read the old testament in it, as well - the Septuagint. I guess if Duo accepts this offer to put in Koine, they'd have to accept words like Jesus and Jew... because many learn Koine to be able to read the NT (like me!!!)
I would LOVE to learn ancient Greek! That would be beyond awesome! As for other ancient languages, I'd also love to learn Latin and Norse.
Let's revive this thread! I would also be very interested in having the course for koine.
Is there any news on this one? I teach Hellenistic/Koine/NT Greek and would love to helpt develop. It would be great to offer such a course to my students.
Awesome! I AM LEARNING KOINE AND KNOW A GOOD AMOUNT. I'd love to be a contributor, if Duo accepts it. I really hope they accept this, because I and many others would love to be able to read the New Testament in the original language!
I don't see why you'd have to wait for next summer. You could knock up a proposal now in Koine and submit it to the Duolingo team. The 'beta form' is just part of the process of ensuring the language courses have a greater degree of quality. It would perhaps be interesting if, in the future, completion of one tree could unlock others. Koine Greek, which is the simplest, could then lead onto different courses in Attic, Ionic, Byzantine Greek, etc.
Well, when it comes to Byzantine Greek... The official language of the state and the Orthodox Church was koine Greek. As for the language of the people (which I suppose it's what Byzantine Greek stands for), it was basically Early Modern Greek (from at least 1000 AD).
Please Ancient Greek. I would like very much to read classical texts in Ancient Greek.
Cool idea! And it makes me think that a course in Old or Middle English would be neat too.
I know a bit of Attic Greek, (spoken by Plato and Aristotle and similar to Koine Greek) so this sounds like a terrific idea for me. I would definitely sign up
What an exciting and generous offer!
I am interested, but please consider using Modern Gk pronunciation if there is any audio component.
I have not seen any linguistic justification for 'ευ' to be pronounced 'Οy!', and 'oυ' to be pronounced 'Ow! (which is how I've heard NT scholars and English speaking uni lecturers pronounce them) and have always had a suspicion that early British classicists just chose whatever sounds the dipthongs made in English, and turned to German when there was no English equivalent!!
We've got Latin currently in the incubator! If there's enough interest in Latin surely there's enough support for koine. I would absolutely love to learn ancient Greek.
I'm really interested in learning older languages such as Greek, Latin, and Norse, so I can read the classics. I don't know much Greek apart from the alphabet (and I wouldn't say I know it very well), but count me in!
That would be fantastic I have been looking for a good source to learn Koine Greek from. I have an english greek parallel bible but nothing to help connect the dots.
I recall my experience in Seminary Greek class was an utter nightmare! I would have killed for another source of instruction on Koine Greek. It was so terrible I haven't touched my old textbooks in years, though I'd love to get back into it! Please create this resource for Seminary dropouts like me who still want to learn but can't stand to suffer through learning Greek on their own! Thanks so much for taking on this incredible task!
I would mainly be interested in Attic Greek. There's a nice Everyman (I think) book on the subject I went through ages ago.
I'd much prefer classic Greek. By the time Koine came along, the dative case had been fully dropped. Seeing as there's already a modern Greek course (29% complete), why not focus on giving learners something with a point of difference, rather than more of the same?
I've read a bit of Koine and it isn't a huge stretch from attica dialect. I've heard going the other way round is more difficult (mainly due to the dative case and grammar like the genitive absolute). Any thoughts?
The dative was still used in koine and the genitive absolute as well. I began with classical Greek and the different dialects, Attic being one of them, the one from which koine developed. True, Koine is a bit easier, but not much if you take extra-biblical authors like Josephus, Philo, and Plutarch into account. One advantage in going for Koine is that the number of potential students and developers will be much higher since more or less all seminary students must learn Koine.
I don't know enough about the language to say. I'm mainly interested in reading Biblical texts and early Christian writings.
I support this proposal. It would be great to study ancient Greek in Duolingo !
Let's go for it ; ))
I studied Classical Greek in college and would love to continue my study through the Duolingo course structure. Any update on the status of this?
I agree, only because once you start w/ Attic, it is much easier to migrate to Koine (which is, unfortunately, the basis for why too many people want to learn). Switching from Koine to Attic is, only according to experiences of my students, more difficult.
learnallthetime that sounds very interesting to me! Why not? Yes!!!!! And Hebrew as well. Is this different than the one spoken today? - Thank you very much!
One of my friends studied ancient Greek, I think both Classical and Koine. When I'll see him next, I'll tell him about this. I expect him either not to be interrested enough to join or to be able to help only for summers (he's a student) - but that shouldn't be a problem.
EDIT: I myself am not able to contribute to any ancient language course, but I'd be interrested in Latin (I learn it now) and any biblical language (I will need at least something of them later).
I think that it would be very good to build a skill tree for ancient Greek. I've studied it for about three years, and attended an academy where the lessons are in spoken Greek!
I've voted up!
I applaud all you people willing to help with Ancient Greek and also with Latin. When I retire I do want to pick them up again, and Classical Hebrew too, but would not be good enough to help! This community of learning never ceases to amaze me!
I think that ancient Greek would be great, anglo saxon and latin would be an interesting addition too.
I want to do (History and) Theology at Uni, so a Koine Greek course on this website would save me a lot of hassle. If it can't be done, a modern Greek would be sound (I mean Turkish, Irish and Hungarian are on here, so Greek has every right to be).
Koine Greek sounds good to me. I know some words and use a Greek-Hebrew dictionary when reading the bible. I think it would be very helpful to me.
Would love to see an Ancient Gre course, and I'd even be willing to pay for it.
I know that this discussion is old, but maybe it's time to bring it back to life.
A hypothetical Duolingo course in Attic/Koine Greek which pronunciation system would it use? The Erasmian ?
I would prefer modern pronunciation. When I was trying to learn Erasmian, and looking for audio online, I heard three different ways to pronounce ̔ο λόγος, all by Erasmian scholars. That was only one word, so imagine dealing with that with every word you try to learn.
Until Duolingo gets ancient Greek, I recommend the following books for self-learners. I have tried many, many different books, and this one has the most gradual learning curve. This series is what finally enabled me to learn Greek:
Greek to GCSE series, by John Taylor
Part 1 book, new Sept. 2016 edition - http://www.amazon.com/Greek-GCSE-Part-Revised-Classical/dp/1474255167/
Part 1 book, older edition - http://www.amazon.com/Greek-GCSE-Part-John-Taylor/dp/1853996564/
I would also vote for classical Attic Greek over koine, if Duolingo is going to do just one ancient Greek course. If you learn Attic, you can can also read koine, but you can also read the great classic authors such as Plato, etc. If you only know koine, your understanding of Greek will be limited.
I vote for Latin and Ancient Greek. Both languages need to be approached like living languages to be learnt well - and to be fun. A little research on the web shows that there is massive interest out there for both spoken Latin and spoken Ancient Greek. Learners are creative and go to surprising lengths just to approach those languages actively - they hunt down Renaissance dialogues and 19th-century readers etc. There are online news and radio programs in Latin and Greek… I am convinced that Duolingo courses in Latin and Ancient Greek would be much more popular than some people seem to think!
I really agree, Latin and Ancient Greek are so helpful in numerous academic fields. Just think how much easier it would be to learn if it gets on here!
I taught Introduction to Classical Studies about 15 years ago, and it included basics of Ancient Greek (mostly Attic, some koine) and Latin. I will sign up for this course when/if it becomes available.
Please to this course, reply if you agree, also try endangered languages such as tsakonian language of greece
This course would be an amazing addition! I hope it can eventually be added to Duolingo! Theology students everywhere would rejoice!
Has there been ay further progress with getting this project off the ground? I'd be able to contribute, though I must admit that I'm really pulling for Attic over Koine. I find the later to be rather limiting, both in the scope of material you can start reading as well as how you can applying that knowledge to the learning of other dialects. There's a reason Classics Departments teach Attic first.
I am a bible college student and would love to have this course as a means of reinforcing what has been learned in class.
Latin and Ancient Greek languages were considered to be a 'must' for any person versed in science fields, that in European universities until the '50ies of the XX century. Nowadays you could be talking with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) PhD's and they do not know a word out of them. For any science-related expert it should be mandatory to have solid skills in these ancient languages, simply because… literally the whole history of science was created upon those two (and Arabic, if we talk about the ancient mathematical tradition).
I totally agree. It would be great to have Latin and Greek added since so many academic disciplines were built upon those languages.
More interested in Attic than Koine but I support this!!! They're pretty mutually intelligible anyway (just please make sure you use polytonic orthography so Attic learners can get the three tones right).
Most Ancient Greek is learned by Attic forms. But some programs start you in Ionic with Herodotus because it's always easier to follow a language as it develops forward than to reconstruct it backward. After reading Herodotus and Thales then Plato, reading Koine is basically a story book I can read at sight- and I only started learning Greek about 4.5 months ago.
I am definitely interested in learning Koine (or Attic Greek). Put me down for supporting this! :)
My research is aimed at Classical Greek, specifically Homeric; but I would be willing to help. I've applied to help with Latin already. Old Norse and Anglo Saxon would be interesting additions.
I'd also like Old Norse... I would help with Latin, Ancient Greek and Anglo Saxon (or Middle English if they have that too), but I'm too busy to do much, if anything, to help :(
I would particularly like to learn Homeric Greek one day. I feel like the first Ancient Greek course should be Attic Greek, since there is much more of interest to read with the language than simply the New Testament.
I'd love to learn Latin and Ancient Greek. Already do some Latin in my spare time but all very basic http://m.youtube.com/user/TuTubusLatinus?&desktop_uri=%2Fuser%2FTuTubusLatinus
I know DL is working on Modern Greek but Ancient Greek and Latin would be really great to learn.
Hamish, glad to hear of your previous research experience with Greek and your interest (in your other post below) in working on the course.
If Duolingo is willing to open this course for development (I just sent them an email enquiry and asked them to cc: you on the reply), one of the first tasks in course development would be to identify the basic high-frequency vocabulary that is typically introduced in an introductory language course. As you probably already know, standard frequency lists for ancient Greek might include J.R. Cheadle, Basic Greek Vocabulary and Malcolm Campbell, Classical Greek Prose: A Basic Vocabulary; for New Testament Greek, the "List of Words Occuring Over 60 Times in the New Testament" in M. Zerwick and M. Grosvenor, A Grammatical Analysis of the Greek New Testament, Rome: Gregorian Biblical Press, 2010, xxix-xxxv.
I know this was a while ago, but if you're looking for word frequencies, although it's Attic not Koine Dickinson College Commentaries has the most common words, pulled from the Thesaurus Lenguae Graecae database, here: http://dcc.dickinson.edu/vocab/greek-tlg-frequencies
I am almost fluent in written latin but i can't speak it or write latin. I would love a latin course and I would really love an Ancient Greek course because they don't do one at school. I really want to learn it!
Old Norse would be extremely welcome. I did try to learn it once, but didn't really keep up with it.
There is definitely interest for Ancient Greek, you can see some of the previous discussions on the topic here http://www.duolingo.com/comment/873415
Whenever they allow modern Greek I will contribute in that course as much as I can, but even though I had a bunch of ancient Greek at school, I would rather spend my time on the modern Greek course.
I'm taking Koine Greek right now in University, but I'd very much like a tool to retain/practice it.
Exactly! A Koine Greek course on Duolingo would be really useful for university students!
If you contribute to the course, you can become a moderator for the language! And that will help speed up the process.
It would be really awesome if you taught classic attic greek instead of koine. Since for a koine learner moving to attic is harder yet for an attic learner moving to koine is easier. It would be awesome if you taught classical latin and middle persian(Pahlavi) too.
I'd love to learn Ancient Greek on Duolingo. Very good idea. Reading Aristotle in the original language would be great.
But that would require classical athenian. I would like this too, as it has been too long since I did greek advanced at university, and I was lazy at keeping it up.
greek sound cool. i might be up for it i could try. but it is going to be a little hard for me. i want to go to college after this year of school. sounds interesting
Yes that would be so awesome. I bought books for learning Ancient Greek months ago and I'm making progress but it is much slower and harder than duolingo.
It's true, but Gordon Conwell will send you a DVD with lessons for like $50, then buy the books. I'm doing it now, and it's not too bad!
Just another "me too", I'd love to learn some Koine Greek (or actually refresh and extend what I learnt at school some years ago)
First of all, I'll just add my "drop in the bucket" opinion that this would be really cool and is something that I am very interested in.
Second, I hope if this is a go in the future that we can get to see Duo in a chiton. ;)
I totally support the ancient greek by the way, i would love to learn Greek
It would be great if Greek became a part of Duolingo. I am Greek and I would love help other learn our beautiful language.
I would be very interested in working on an Attic/Koine module. I'm teaching the language to my children and duolingo would be a great way to practice their skills.
There are a couple of technical hurdles to work out. One, as you mentioned, is the font. Ideally, the user should be able to select a font for displaying a particular language. The second issue is the use of unicode normalization to allow both precomposed characters and combining diacritics. Does anyone know if duolingo supports unicode normalization?
I don't, but I have a number of languages set in Windows (Eng Intl, Eng US, HRV, ΕΛ). In Win 8, to cycle between different keyboards is as simple as pressing Win key + spacebar. It would not be too laborious to move from one to the other I think and save issues with compatibility or altering software.
That is true. But I am referring to a the unicode representations of the letters produced by those keyboards. For example, Windows comes with a polytonic Greek keyboard, but there are also third-party keyboards from Logos and Tavultesoft, too. But here's the point: some keyboards will produce precomposed characters while others use combining diacritics. For example, the letter ἄ could be represented as one single code point (alpha precomposed with breathing and accent), or as three different code points: one for the alpha, one for the breathing, and one for the accent. They look the same on the screen, but they are very different inside the program. It's a problem that has to be solved by the programmers using a technique called unicode normalization.
Oh yes, I forgot about those! Modern demotic Gk uses only the acute to denote where the accent is and the diaeresis for dipthongs. I believe the change happened c. late 70s when the language was simplified (plus other changes). But Modern Gk orthography isn't the answer I guess 'cos the iota subscript was also one of the things dispensed with.
Another vote here for Attic Greek. What does Koine Greek open up besides the New Testament? As compared with the great classics. In addition, those who know the language seem to say that it's easier to go from Attic to Koine than the other way around.
But despite my gripes, I'll learn whatever Ancient Greek becomes available on Duolingo. If I had the choice, I'd actually choose Homeric Greek.
As a future Seminarian Student, having ancient, koine, attic, etc Greek would be awesome for helping me understand the biblical material. Why we are at it, do you know of anyone who could do ancient Hebrew or biblical Hebrew? This could definitely help in our translations and keeping us sharp in the field after seminary study.
I am planning to try to learn koine, the only question is whether it can be on duolingo.
I'm going to study Koine Greek at the university next fall (2016) and having Koine Greek course on Duolingo would be great. A course in Modern Greek will come very soon, and I wonder how different Modern Greek is from Ancient Greek. Can anyone who is fluent in Modern Greek understand Ancient Greek at all?
Koine Greek is not that hard (as long as you know some basic things about ancient Greek, like cases, verb conjugations etc). Attic is considerably harder.
I vote for Ancient Greek (either koinè and attic, but koinè is easier indeed) !! I am learning Ancient Greek, both classical and koinè, and I could talk about this project at the university...?
Not sure if this is relevant, but there actually is a series of books that you can pretty much learn Attic Greek from, and that is the Athenaze series of books; check it out if you are interested. Teacher's Handbook: https://www.scribd.com/doc/234428487/Athenaze-Teacher-s-Handbook-1 Chpt. 9 of Book: http://www.clasicasloscerros.com/Griego/alumnos/10Paneguiris.pdf
I would really love to learn Ancient Greek!I am Greek myself but the ancient language is just too difficult for me!If I take this course then,maybe,I would understand it better.Latin would be a great alternative!
I would love it if such a course were added. I studied classical and Koine Greek in college, and would love to actively study it again with the Duolingo course structure. Also hoping that Latin -- which I studied in grad school -- is added at some point.
I’m more in favour of Attic than Koine. But mostly I wonder what you plan on doing in terms of audio; hopefully classic pronunciation, tones and all...
I mean, Koine pronunciation (vowel shifts and killing off the tones) can be completely extrapolated from Attic pronunciation. I suppose you could have two audio tracks.
I personally think Attic greek is the most appropriate, but would be ecstatic with either. It needs to happen duolingo! Ancient Greek is arguably the most influential language in the western world!
Yeah, I can see the case for Attic being stronger. As long as one gets made, I'll be happy :)
I vote for Attic as well. It's very easy to move from Koine having learned Attic than doing it the other way.
Please make this a reality! If I can help, please email me: email@example.com -Nick
I studied Ancient Greek in School. Honestly, I came to this site looking for it.
Learnallthetime, that's a lot of good information! And links I didn't know. Thanks.
I agree on the reference to Bett's useful complete intro course, however Mounce, I think, is as fractured as Wheelock's Latin, and nearly as frustrating for self-directed instruction.
Sounds like you would be perfect to work with on the Duolingo course for Anc. Greek.
This would be really great to have on here - Along with Ancient Greek too of course!
I'm currently taking Koine Greek in Graduate school and would love a Duolingo course
While my first priority is Latin, I would welcome an ancient greek course and take it then.
Interested in this too! What is the status? When was that update posted?
As an ancient language enthusiast, I'd love to have Ancient Greek on Duolingo.
It's been four years now since this conversation began, and there has been significant interest expressed in courses for both Ancient Greek and Latin - and still no movement at all for either one from what I can tell.
Meanwhile, there are complete courses available in both High Valyrian and Klingon.
Teach Yourself have added more books on Ancient languages due to the rising interest such as Attic Greek, Koine Greek, Old English and Middle Egyptian with future books covering Old Norse, Aramaic amongst others. I hope Duolingo adds ancient languages too. I’m hoping for Attic Greek in particular though.
I would definitely learn ancient greek if a course is added for it. I'm kind of a nerd, so classical languages definitely appeal to me.
I'd be interested in learning Greek with a focus on those words which became the roots of modern scientific, mathematical and medical words. Would modern Greek (with the side benefit of being a living language) be good for this or would I be better off with classical Greek?
Yes please! Not good enough at Koine to help myself, but would definitely love to see something like this.
I'm interested in learning to read Ancient Greek. My preference would be Attic with a side of Koine. :^)
I would LOVE it if duolingo did an Ancient Greek course.....I wouldn’t be able to help put it together, but I’d be one of the first to sign up to it!
The fact that Duolingo has not made a Latin or Koine or Sanskrit (+other dead languages) course makes sense if they only want living languages, but why? One of the ways polyglots can learn so many living languages is because of the dead languages, and since there are so many polyglots and wannabe polyglots using Duolingo, it would make MORE sense to make Koine, Latin, and Sanskrit (+other dead languages).
Well they already have two fictional languages so I don’t think they are concerned with just living languages. Since they promote free education having languages like Koine and Latin seems like an obvious choice since those are most often learned in pricey academic environments.
Looks like Latin is in phase 1 of the incubator now! Hopefully we'll get support for Koine Greek soon too.
i've always wanted to learn ancient greek (and ancient hebrew), and i would love it to be added to duolingo, i think it's a great idea, and i'd learn it! plus i love duolingo, the way it helps you to learn languages so amazingly, yes please to adding ancient greek
Another vote for Ancient Greek. Although I'm not brimming with optimism here, since this discussion is now three years old with no apparent movement.
Thanks! I struggle to learn langues without the same alphabet, but I would give it a try!
Dotpool12, good question, and Conradventure's answer is correct, however the visuals are not too, too difficult, and once you have it down, there are enough cognates to make a smooth learning experience. If this course ever is made, it will be beneficial to thousands.
I'm sure you could do it. It would simply take some practice and memorization. I never considered myself good at languages but in college I had to take a course on Hebrew for my degree. It terrified me going into it since it was wholly different than english but in the end it wasn't bad. It just took a couple days of studying to nail the new alphabet. If I did it then I bet most people can.
If this ever happens, I hope they use modern pronunciation, I can't stand other ones. Or else, I guess I'll just turn my volume off
Yeah. Since then, DL has developed full courses for Klingon and High Velyrian. So the languages of fictional characters are worth their time, but the language of ancient history and philosophy is not.
I think to begin creating a course for something like Greek or Latin, Doulingo needs people willing to volunteer to create the content. Like you said though, it is super frustrating that somehow people who know obscure fictional language get their courses out while more valuable languages haven't seen the light of day.
I am a little girl who is interested in becoming an archaeologist in Greece when I grow up. This would speed up my ability to do the job well.
I would love to - I bought a book once to learn greek, but it wasn't written well and I had problems with learning how to pronounce - so I abandoned it, but I would love to continue learning.