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Greek Lesson 6

Hello everybody!!!! Here's the 6th lesson of the Greek lessons series. Remember that I don't write how the words are pronounced, because you've already learnt it in Greek Lesson 1.

In this lesson you'll learn the personal pronouns in the nominative case (yes, in Greek there are cases even for pronouns!!!), how to conjugate verbs ending in -ω in the present tense and the irregular verb είμαι (=to be).

Here are the personal pronouns in the nominative case.

Ενικός αριθμός (=singular)

  • εγώ (= I)
  • εσύ (= you - singular)
  • αυτός (= he)
  • αυτή (= she)
  • αυτό (= it)

Πληθυντικός αριθμός (=plural)

  • εμείς (= we)
  • εσείς (= you - plural and formal)
  • αυτοί (= they - masculin)
  • αυτές (=they - feminin)
  • αυτά (= they - neuter)

Personal pronouns are used as the υποκείμενο (= subject) of the verb. The sunject responds to the question word "Who?". For example in the sentence "I learn Greek", the verb is learn, then you ask "Who learns?". And the answer is "I learn", so I is the subject of the verb learn. The subject is ALWAYS in the nominative case in Greek. Of course it can't be always a personal pronoun. Personal pronouns are (nearly) always omitted before the verb.

Now let's see how to conjugate a verb in -ω. In Greek all the verbs (except for είμαι) are divided in two categories called "συζυγίες". In the 1st συζυγία you can find all the Greek verbs ending in -ω. In the 2nd συζυγία you can find all the Greek verbs ending in -ώ or in -άω (in the active voice). In Greek, there is no form of the verbs like the English infinitive, so all the verbs are given in the 1st sing. type of the present tense, mostly in the active voice. Now you'll learn to conjugate in the present tense the verbs of the 1st συζυγία in the active voice. The endings of these verbs are :

  • ω
  • εις
  • ει
  • ουμε
  • ετε
  • ουν

Now let's see how the verb παίζω (= to play) is conjugated.

  • (εγώ) παίζω = (I) play
  • (εσύ) παίζεις= (you) play
  • (αυτός/ή/ό) παίζει = (he/she/it) plays
  • (εμείς) παίζουμε= (we) play
  • (εσείς) παίζετε= (you) play
  • (αυτοί/ές/ά) παίζουν= they (play)

Also, please notice that in Greek there is no difference between present simple and present continuous tenses. For example, παίζεις can mean you play, but it can also mean you are playing!!!

Also, you may hear many people in Greece putting an "ε" after the ending "-ουν". For example, someone could say αυτοί παίζουνε instead of αυτοί παίζουν. This isn't correct, but a lot of people say it like this in Greece.

Like this verb, you can conjugate all the verbs of the first συζυγία in the active voice. Here are some of them :

  • έχω = to have
  • ζωγραφίζω = to draw
  • μένω = to stay, to live (in a house, in a city, etc)
  • πηγαίνω = to go
  • βρίσκω = to find
  • διαβάζω = to read
  • γράφω = to write ....and a lot of other.

And now the verb είμαι (=to be).

  • (εγώ) είμαι = (I) am
  • (εσύ) είσαι = (you) are
  • (αυτός/ή/ό) είναι = (he/she/it) is
  • (εμείς) είμαστε = (we) are
  • (εσείς) είστε = (you) are
  • (αυτοί/ές/ά) είναι = (they) are

Also, please note that you may sometimes here εσείς είσαστε instead of εσείς είστε. Εσείς είσαστε isn't correct, but it is used by a lot of people in Greece, especially in villages of northern Greece.

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Χαιρετίσματα από τη μαγευτική πόλη της Θεσσαλονίκης,

Παναγιώτης :)

December 31, 2014



I have always thought it remarkable that the word "ego" means "I" in Greek.

Thanks for another lesson and I look forward to more!

[deactivated user]


    Now THAT was very clear. I just love how consicely you describe the verb endings. Kudos! Ευχαριστώ, Παναγιώτη :)


    Thank you, this is amazing!

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