Greek: The Language of Beauty

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Greek: The Language of Beauty

Post by EpsilonXangent-(DOG)- » Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:34 am

Kalimera everyone, Epsilon here!

As you might expect that this post isn't about the language's history, but why I chose to learn how to speak in Greek.
The Greek language, as we all know, is the root of every language (But is also the root of the Phoenician Language) and every word has its own root, whether Greek or Latin.

I love the Greek language, as its words and its history make it so unique, even its phonetics make it pretty classy.

Even Arabic and English take some words from the Greek Language, such as "Psyche" and "كيمياء" (Chemya' which means Chemistry).

Why I chose to learn Greek, alongside German which I take in School:

I wanted to have a fourth language I could master with, so I chose Greek and soon I will take Russian.
I thought it would be very beneficial to write and speak in Greek and because the language with its words and history fascinate me.

I find Greek to be the language of beauty.

Of course it might be hard, but it will of course need time until I could master it.

I am currently learning the language through the internet by videos of lessons through YouTube and even through articles.
That is until the 13th of August, by which I will go to the Greek Cultural Center in Fustaat, Cairo in order to learn and enhance the language further.

It will be an amazing opportunity to learn something useful and to be a multilingual person !

Best Regards. :)

Kalimera once more, WOOF!
Time is of the Essence, and so is Life... Master it carefully...

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Re: Greek: The Language of Beauty

Post by Leo(T.C.K.) » Wed Aug 01, 2018 2:10 am

I find myself having picked up many languages but usually can't speak them or switch to them, just understand them somewhat.

Greek however is not something I touched but I am somewhat familiar with Greek people, there's a number of them living in this town even.

The guy who has the pizza place where I usually order from, he's called "Stavros".

And I guess his father is Davros, the creator of Daleks....but :)

Well maybe not. Either way I first heard of "Stavros" in Daikatana, one of the bosses of the game happens to be a wizard named Stavros.

And he's a fire wizard and this guy makes pizzas, pizzas, ovens, fire...hmmmmm....


I do like their food in general, I have to say it's one of my favorite kitchens...

While they usually don't make things too spicy as opposed to some other southern states, it still gives pleasure to my tongue in other ways.

Time to summon some "unrealshare.minigunsentry". Sorry, saw that appear in the chat, that's what the guy is looking for, not peacemaker. The send button in the chat doesn't work for me, it fails during the javascript (it would have to be without like the rest of this forum).

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Re: Greek: The Language of Beauty

Post by AndréRhineDavis-(DOG)- » Wed Aug 01, 2018 2:16 pm

EpsilonXangent-(DOG)- wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:34 am
The Greek language, as we all know, is the root of every language (But is also the root of the Phoenician Language) and every word has its own root, whether Greek or Latin.
I'm sorry, but I'm afraid this is incorrect.
The Greek language is part of the Indo-European family of languages.
Basically, there was a language spoken thousands and thousands of years ago which we today refer to as "Proto-Indo-European".
There are no written documents in this language, in fact it existed before writing altogether, but we can infer it existed and reconstruct it by looking at Indo-European languages today and looking at related words between them and seeing what sound changes must have happened and therefore reconstructing what the original language must have been.

This Proto-Indo-European language evolved into several different languages over the years as its speakers moved around Europe and Asia and their language changed. It is the ancestor of many of the languages in Europe and western Asia, but certainly not all languages in the world!

Here are some of its descendants:
- Proto-Italic, which evolved into Latin (among other extinct langauges), which itself evolved into French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, etc
- Proto-Germanic, which itself evolved into English, Dutch, German, Frisian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, etc
- Proto-Slavic, which itself evolved into Bulgarian, Russian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, Slovenian, Ukrainian, etc
- Proto-Baltic , which itself evolved into Lithuanian and Latvian
- Proto-Celtic, which itself evolved into Welsh, Cornish, Breton, Gaelic, Manx, etc
- Proto-Hellenic, whose only modern surviving descendant is Greek
- Proto-Indo-Aryan, which evolved into Sanskrit (among other extinct languages), which itself evolved into Hindustani, Bengali, Assamese, Punjabi, Kashmiri, Gujarati, Marathi, Odia, Nepali, Sinhalese, etc
- The Iranian family, which itself evolved into Persian, Ossetian and Kurdish
- and many more smaller minor families

So English did not come from Greek or Latin, but they have a shared ancestor, Proto-Indo-European.
e.g. Proto-Indo-European *s(w)eḱs became "six" in English, "sechs" in German, "sex" in Latin, "hex" in Greek. None of these languages borrowed this word off each other, all these languages are merely descendants of Proto-Indo-European.
However, it certainly is true that English has borrowed explicit *words* from Latin and Greek. So we still say "six" the native English way, but we talk about "hexagons" and "hexagrams" and "hexadecimal" and stuff. This doesn't mean English *comes* from Greek, it just means we have borrowed some of its words.

As for Phoenician, Phoenician is a Semitic language, very similar to Hebrew.
It is part of the Semitic family, having descended from Proto-Semitic, which we can reconstruct by analysing all the Semitic languages and looking at their differences and how they must have evolved and reconstructing their common ancestor.
Here are some of its descendents:
- Proto-East-Semitic, which evolved into Akkadian and Eblaite, both extinct today
- Proto-Northwest-Semitic, which evolved into Aramaic, Phoenician, Hebrew, Punic, Ugaritic, etc
- Proto-Arabic, which evolved into Classical Arabic and from there all the modern spoken varieties of Arabic
- Proto-South-Semitic, which evolved into Ge'ez, Amharic, Mehri, etc
Proto-Semitic is actually part of a bigger family, the Afroasiatic family, which contains other languages such as Ancient Egyptian, Hausa, Berber, etc, which themselves come from a common ancestor Proto-Afroasiatic, but much less is known about Proto-Afroasiatic than, say, Proto-Semitic or Proto-Indo-European. The further back we trace these languages and try to reconstruct what they were originally like, the less sure we can be.

On the other hand, when you were talking about Greek and Phoenician, did you mean the *writing systems* as opposed to the *language itself*? That's a whole different story.
Ancient Bronze Age inscriptions in the Sinai peninsula from about the 18th century BCE show symbols simplified from Egyptian hieroglyphics, where the symbols are used to represent *sounds* rather than *words*. The writing system is an "Abjad", that is, the symbols are used to represent consonant, and the vowels are not written. We call this writing system Proto-Sinaitic, and it was used to write some ancient Northwest Semitic language.

By 1200 BCE, it had evolved into the Phoenician script that the Phoenicians used. The original Proto-Sinaitic alphabet had about 26 different letters, but the Phoenician script only had 22, since the Phoenicians didn't distinguish as many sounds as other Semtiic languages. The Phoenicians spread their alphabet all over the Mediterranean, and it caught on in many places. In particular, both the modern Hebrew alphabet and modern Arabic alphabet descended from versions of the Phoenician alphabet.

But most importantly, the Phoenicians introduced their alphabet to the Greeks. And the Greeks did something very interesting; they decided to use some of the letters (Alef, Ayin, He, Waw, etc) to represent *vowels* in and of themselves! Thus the Greeks invented the first "full alphabet", where letters represented both consonants and vowels. Over the years, the Greeks got rid of some letters they didn't use, and adding some extra letters that they needed to represent Greek sounds. They also decided at some point to start writing left to right rather than right to left. And from the Greek alphabet, variations of it in other places evolved into the Latin alphabet (that we use today) and the Cyrillic alphabet.

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Re: Greek: The Language of Beauty

Post by EpsilonXangent-(DOG)- » Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:29 am

Oops, here goes my mistake of knowing if Greek was the "root" or not, thanks for the information, Andre!

No need to apologize by the way, it's only a matter of time where I wasn't conscious enough of my mistake.

Best Regards, and nice information!

Time is of the Essence, and so is Life... Master it carefully...

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