https://www.duolingo.com/4faith7hope

How Helpful Is Learning Modern Greek When Learning Ancient/Bible Greek?

Even though I know this Modern form of Greek isn't what the Bible was written in, I am thinking it will make learning that form easier. Does anyone have any advice on this? I don't want to put all the effort into learning Modern Greek if it will not help me when it comes to learning the Ancient/Biblical Greek.

April 27, 2019

9 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/a.urban

Learning modern Greek first is exactly the right method since Koine Greek is not an entirely different language but just an older dialect. I think it's almost like the modern English of the KJV compared to contemporary English - no one should have a problem understanding the KJV (save a few words which you could look up on dictionary.com) if he already knows English. Also, you will learn a pronounciation you can actually use without Greek people laughing at you... Concerning the vocabulary, about 90-some percent of the 1000 most common words in the Greek NT have the same definition in modern Greek as in Koine. There are only few words with a different meaning. BTW this is why most Greek scholars (who couldn't even order somthing at the restaurant in Greek) are wrong. They'll tell you that biblical Greek is totally different and hard to translate although, as mentioned, most words have the same definition in modern Greek. There are many Greek native speakers who are very familiar with Koine (in the Greek orthodox church they read nothing but the Textus Receptus in their services, so Koine Greek is a language they understand just fine - nothing special about it). Hope that helps :)

April 29, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/vasiliis

Native greek here, first of all as fluent in modern greek when i read an ancient text written in ancient attic greek dialect(ancient athenians language) or ancient koini dialect(ancient macedonians language) i can make out a meaning of what i read.(there are lots of ancient greek dialects but most scripts are written in those two) From my experience in studying ancient Greek (they teach us at school) i found it really hard to understand completely what is written down and what i found most intersting is that the ancient greeks used much fewer words to describe something(the translations were about double the size of words compared to the original text), they had muuch more complex and hard grammar( modern greek grammar is already hard) and had some more tones ,so my opinion is that immediately jumping to ancient greek without first learning some modern is gonna look like chinese to you

Also this video may help you https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIB5SKG3no0&fbclid=IwAR0A5ueMD1z6w9f4myZHuQW6XTFVCjK23GLQIQF7Wpqk_vB-8NkABbzr1ww

April 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/GianPaolo382731

I speak as somebody who studied first ancient Greek and only after the modern language. Personally I think it will be VERY useful, even though the pronunciation is quite different (but Greeks have a different opinion on that specific point). The Bible Greek has much more in common with modern Greek than classical Attic (not to mention Homer or other archaic poets). Of course there are differences, but if you learn modern you will find easier to understand many features of the Bible Greek, especially the language used for the Gospels. Furthermore, even if the modern language is much different from the classical ancient Greek, even in that case I think it will be make it easier. Just bear in mind the differences in pronunciation. For pronunciation of ancient Greek, the best book is "Vox Graeca: The Pronunciation of Classical Greek" by W. Sidney Allen.

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/konosp

Regarding the pronunciation, she's interested in koine, not Attic (classical).

The koine reconstructed pronunciation is very similar to the modern one, save for 2-3 vowels.

April 29, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Zabrunga

If you have access to a way to learn Koine Greek freely/easily then go for it.

But if you have access only to a modern Greek course, then go for it. It won't help you a lot but it will help, until you find a way to learn something more.

i don't understand the previous comments about pronunciation: you aren't going to speak it but read it. The reconstructed pronunciation can be easier for non-Greek speakers.

May 23, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Garnetskull

I would say it's the other way around: learning Ancient Greek will help with Modern Greek. If your actual intent is to study Ancient Greek and not use the modern one, then I say just go for it. Ancient Greek is a lot more grammatically complex than Modern. I studied a little bit of Modern Greek before jumping into Biblical Greek, then Attic Greek (what is generally meant what people say 'Ancient Greek'). In general I'd recommend starting with Attic, then Koine (biblical) so that its irregularities will be easier.

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/konosp

If you have absolutely no interest in modern Greek itself, don't learn it. Stick with koine (not Attic).

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Papualaisooppera

It could be of very little use indeed, or that you must study quite a lot of Modern Greek to gain at least some useful information needed to know anything about the Koine. It might however still not be a completely useless effort, in my opinion. You will learn the letters and you will get a grasp of the basic word structure of Greek, though you would still miss many finesses present in one and missing in the other. Doing the basics of Modern Greek might be a good stepping stone to the Ancient one as well. I mean, it is not a complete waste of time, only a hard way of doing things.

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/BAknightUS

You should definitely learn modern Greek first. It is just like modern English vs KJV English. The sentence structure is the same. The verb endings are very similar. If you want to listen to audiobooks for the Bible the best ones are done by modern Greek speakers using modern pronunciation. Reconstructed pronunciation is a joke. It's like if an American insisted on using British pronunciation while reading Shakespeare.

May 4, 2019
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