Category: Literature

Did Tzetzes write the first attested instance of μουνί?

By: | Post date: 2017-10-27 | Comments: 9 Comments
Posted in categories: Linguistics, Literature, Mediaeval Greek

The first recorded instance of μουνί “cunt”, as I reported in 2010, is in the epilogue of John Tzetzes’ Theogony, written in the 1140s (based on when the patron who commissioned it was active). The next attestations are from the Entertaining Tale of Quadrupeds (1364), and the excommunication of a priest (1383). At the time, […]

Early Modern Greek site

By: | Post date: 2017-10-24 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Literature, Mediaeval Greek

The Early Modern Greek site is back after being inactive for a while, and its curator Notis Toufexis is making up for lost time posting new entries on editions and digitised manuscripts. There is also an associated Facebook group.

Two Ancient Greek Gettysburg Addresses: II

By: | Post date: 2017-10-05 | Comments: 2 Comments
Posted in categories: Ancient Greek, Linguistics, Literature

I posted a commentary on the first of two translations that I found online of the Gettysburg Address into Ancient Greek, emulating the style of Gorgias. That find has prompted me to join the Textkit forum for people learning and writing in Latin and Ancient Greek—with the hilarity of a Modern Greek speaker trying to […]

Hippolytus: Commentary on Daniel and Chronicon

By: | Post date: 2017-10-05 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Literature, Mediaeval Greek

Gorgias Press has just published a translation by Tom Schmidt of the Commentary on Daniel, by Hippolytus of Rome, and the world chronicle (Chronicon) also attributed to him. The latter incorporates the text of the Stadiasmus Maris Magni, a Roman guidebook to the ports of the Mediterranean. (It’s not a portolan, but it’s as close […]

Two Ancient Greek Gettysburg Addresses: I

By: | Post date: 2017-10-02 | Comments: 6 Comments
Posted in categories: Ancient Greek, Linguistics, Literature

The classicists among you know—as the rest of you may well not—that Ancient Greek Composition is a thing. Advanced students of Ancient Greek have traditionally been set exercises of translating Modern English text into Ancient Greek. The idea is that by working out the means of expressing yourself idiomatically in Ancient Greek, students get a […]

Against the recent PhD on Nathanael Bertos

By: | Post date: 2017-09-19 | Comments: 1 Comment
Posted in categories: Culture, Literature, Mediaeval Greek

My post on Nathanael Bertos was occasioned by a Google search that led me to find out that there had been a recent PhD thesis, which had just been published, by Despoina Athanasiadou-Stefanoudaki. I bought the book. Bertos was advertised as one of the earliest writers in Greek vernacular prose, and I knew nothing about him; […]

Nilus-Nathanael Bertos (?) (ca. 1460?): On a captive freed through the prayers of priests

By: | Post date: 2017-09-13 | Comments: 19 Comments
Posted in categories: Linguistics, Literature, Mediaeval Greek

I rejoin Hellenisteukontos with a translation of a sermon possibly by Nilus-Nathanael Bertos. No, most people have not heard of him, and justifiably so. He isn’t all that good. But the sermon struck me as so… WTF, so divorced from the world I know (a world substantially informed by the Reformation and the Enlightenment), that […]

The Mass of the Beardless Man

By: | Post date: 2017-08-06 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Literature, Mediaeval Greek

I’ve name-checked the Mass of the Beardless Man (Spanos) in Nick Nicholas’ answer to What is the dirtiest work of Modern Greek literature? I have been asked to provide a sample, and herewith I oblige. Spanos was written around 1500, in Northern Greece or Constantinople; I’ve noted the speculation by Tassos Karanastassis, that it was […]

What is the dirtiest work of Modern Greek literature?

By: | Post date: 2017-08-05 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Literature, Mediaeval Greek, Modern Greek

I know of three contenders; and having rebrowsed through one, I’m eliminating it from contention. I am, by the way, extending the definition back to 1000 AD. The contender I have not read (yet) is the only contender from the past century: The Great Eastern, by Greek surrealist Andreas Embirikos. It’s an encyclopaedia of all […]

Ooh! He Said ‘Fuck’! He must be a revolutionary!

By: | Post date: 2017-07-31 | Comments: 1 Comment
Posted in categories: Literature, Mediaeval Greek

I’ve been pondering taboos for quite a while now; you’ll see a recent rumination from me at Nice skewering of Humour as Virtue Signalling. In the West latterly, we exult in people breaking taboos, as if being a rebel and a taboo-breaker is its own reward. You know, Well, people tell me love is for […]

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