8 Lesser Known Things About Greek Language

Greek language lessons

 

Ancient Greece. The simple utterance of these words, projects in our minds the grandiose image of Greek civilization.

Greece was the home of some extremely important personalities in human history, including philosophers like Plato and Socrates, scientists such as Aristotle and Hippocrates, and of course leaders who influenced the entire history of mankind, including the famous Alexander the Great.

Even if you are a true encyclopedia in history or philosophy and all these things seem familiar to you, how much do you know about Greek?

Did you know that Greek was the first language to introduce vowels into the alphabet? Or that the question mark is given by a semicolon?

Here are some lesser known things, described in detail, in the following.

 

The Greek language was written initially from right to left

 

In the older times, Old Greek, just like contemporary Hebrew and Arabic, was written from right to left. After that, there was a period in which it was written in both directions, before finally being written only from left to right.

 

Greek is the oldest language used

 

Greek is a language that had been spoken over 3500 years ago. The first known Greek language form, spoken in the 2nd millennium BC. is proto-Greek. From this it would evolve later into the ancient Greek-lingua franca of Antiquity.

Modern Greek was born with the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453.

The word alphabet comes from Greek, from the Greek letters: α (alpha) and β (beta). So even if the Romanian language uses the Latin alphabet and not the Greek alphabet, the term ‘alphabet’ refers initially to the two Greek letters.

The longest word in literature is a Greek word

 

It is known that the longest word that has ever appeared in literature, can be found in the play “The Assembly of Women” written by Aristophanes in 391 B.C. It is a 171-letter word, a dish invented by the author, from several types of meat. If you ever feel brave enough, try to pronounce it flawlessly:

 

λοπαδο­τεμαχο­σελαχο­γαλεο­κρανιο­λειψανο­δριμ­υπο­τριμματο­σιλφιο­καραβο­μελιτο­κατακεχυ­μενο­κιχλ­επι­κοσσυφο­φαττο­περιστερ­αλεκτρυον­οπτο­κεφαλλιο­κιγκλο­πελειο­λαγῳο­σιραιο­βαφη­τραγανο­πτερύγων

By 1976 there were two official dialects of Greek

 

Katharevusa used in university, law, medicine, press and army.

Demotic used in both current speech and literature.

In 1976, the Greek government declared the Demotic dialect the only official language.

 

The Greek alphabet introduced vowels for the first time

 

The Greek alphabet has a long history of over 3500 years. The Greeks were the first to introduce vowels into their alphabet, until then only the consonants were noted.

 

For the question mark, the Greeks use semicolons

 

Not only do the Greeks use a different alphabet from the Latin one, but also some punctuation marks are different. For example, for the question mark they use;

 

Greek courses

The word polyglot that defines a person who speaks several languages, comes from Greek, from the words poly and glossa (many languages).

If you are interested in becoming a polyglot or simply wish to learn Greek, think about how great it would be to do some Greek language courses with a native speaker?

You can also send me a request if you want more details about Greek courses.

Learn this wonderful language with me and during the Greek courses, you will have the opportunity to learn much more about this super language, which has influenced the destiny of the world in such a profound way.

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