Tuillier’s paper could be viewed as outside the scope of the bibliography, so I’ll take a moment to explain why I have added it. While the paper itself does not discuss a particular linguistic theory, the work it is discussing provides a huge advance in the ability to apply any linguistic theory to the study of ancient Greek. The Diccionario Griego-Español represents a wonderful advance in the field ancient Greek lexicography.
The paper was published in the first edition of Janus, a Spanish language journal focussed on the Golden Age of Spain, but touching tangential matters where helpful to that focus. You can view or download a copy of the article at either of the following locations:
The Gospels and Acts from the New Testament form a small part of what will be covered by the forthcoming intermediate lexicon from Cambridge, projected to become available for purchase next year. The following video (just under 10 minutes in length) gives an overview of the work that has been taking place over the past fifteen years.
The new lexicon will be different from existing ones, its authors assure us, in several ways, two of which are the rejection of what is often called “glosses” (one-word translations) and an elevation of sense over syntax.
There is a strong focus on identification of sense distinctions and a detailed description of them, as opposed to an older methodology in ancient Greek dictionaries where general catch-all single word translations were used, along with a bias in the presentation towards the highlighting of syntactic information, which in practice tends to override somewhat unsubtly the divisions of sense.
The quote above comes from the first page of the introduction to the lexicon on the University of Cambridge website. That introduction includes useful information about the team working on the project and the methodology they are using. It also discusses the funding, the use of XML to mark up the text, and much more. The following are links to the various parts of the introduction.
I’m enjoying the 67° weather (19.4° C) in Miraflores, investigating the future middle and passive in Ancient Greek. My goal is to read every occurrence of the future non-active forms in the Greek New Testament before returning to the US in a few days. It’s time I wrote lesson 24 for the online grammar!
Thank you to astute reader, Cristóbal for pointing out a typographical error in this post!
While the Sara B. Aleshire Center is focused primarily on encouraging and supporting the research of UC Berkeley faculty and graduate students, it provides resources that are of significant value for anyone studying ancient Greek inscriptions, including images of the inscriptions in their possession.
Once again this November, Jonathan Robie and I will present an update on the work we are doing to create free materials for teaching Hellenistic Greek as a living language.
I look forward to seeing many of you at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver. There will be plenty to do and a lot of great papers. Our presentation will take place at 1:00 pm. We have the first slot in the session, Innovative Approaches to Teaching Biblical Languages, joint session by Global Education & Research Technology and Academic Teaching & Biblical Studies.
Here is an abstract like the one that will appear in the program book:
Teachers increasingly recognize the importance of teaching biblical Greek using the same kind of effective techniques used to teach modern languages in schools and universities. These techniques focus on carefully designed learning activities that require the student to think in the target language in order to respond appropriately.
There are now several university level courses that take this approach to teaching Greek, but we believe that there is a real need for a course that (1) can be taught by anyone with a solid reading knowledge of Greek (using the teacher’s notes and recordings we provide), (2) concentrates on texts drawn from the New Testament, and (3) is freely available. For those who do not have access to a teacher, we believe that it is also important to be able to learn online.
The course we are developing works through New Testament texts using pictures, TPR, and asking and answering questions in Greek. Each lesson has (1) a content objective focused an authentic Greek text and (2) a language objective expressing the skill to be mastered.
Linguistic terms are taught after students have experienced the construct they describe. Before introducing a term like “1st person singular,” we expose students to the word ἐγώ and verb forms that correspond to it. Before introducing terms like “nominative, genitive, dative, accusative,” we teach how to ask and answer questions using the forms τίς, τίνος, τίνι, τίνα. Before introducing terms like “circumstantial participle,” we act out scenarios that illustrate the relationship between two verbs.
In keeping with the philosophy of this course, our presentation will focus on presenting sample teaching activities live rather than talking about them, followed by discussion of the specific content or language objective and why we teach it the way we do.
Join us for a lively discussion.
In the same session several other topics will be discussed, all related to teaching biblical languages.
I look forward to hearing Mike Aubrey’s SBL paper, “Compounding and Cognitive Processes in Word Formation with ὑδροποτέω and its relatives.”
It is often the case that compound words mean something more than or other than the combined meanings of the two words in the compound. This is apparently the case with ὑδροποτέω. The usage of the word shows that it means something different from simply ὕδωρ plus ποτέω.
You can read the abstract of Dr. Aubrey’s paper here. He will present it in the Cognitive Linguistics and Biblical Interpretation Section at the national meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature in Denver, Colorado in late November.
Seumas Macdonald has posted a great discussion of a problem facing many who are using communicative methods to teach Ancient Greek in institutions that require students to know the traditional metalanguage for talking about Greek rather than simply speaking Greek. I highly recommend it.
I have added a few lines of behind-the-scenes code to the online grammar (HellenisticGreek.com) to force all pages to load securely (https rather than http). The site has been available on a secure server for some time now, but with these changes it will be impossible to load any pages insecurely.