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Month: May 2017
What was the role of the Turkish language in the Balkan sprachbund? How was Turkish affected by it or how effected it?
All Balkan languages have borrowed substantial Turkish vocabulary, and all Balkan languages have borrowed some Turkish affixes. However, the Balkan Sprachbund is defined through the convergence of grammars, rather than just their borrowings from a common source. It is defined by shared morphological categories and syntactic constructions: a convergence such that, if you replace a […]
What do the Greeks think of the Pontic Greeks who converted to Islam?
Greeks in recent years have established contact with the Pontic-speaking Muslims of the Of Valley, who remained in Turkey after 1923. (Their autonym for the language, unsurprisingly, is Romeyka.) They are renowned as devout Muslims, prominent in Islamic learning. (One might ruefully speculate that they feel they have something to prove.) Any promotion of the […]
How do I say “I am proud to be a Sufi Muslim” in Koine Greek?
I trust, OP, you appreciate the… clashiness of your request. Even if Rumi actually did write some verses in Greek. I guess, καυχῶμαι μουσουλμάνος σουφιστὴς ὤν. You won’t find “Mussulman” in any Koine texts, but you certainly find the adjective in the 12th century. You won’t find “Sufi” in Byzantine Greek either, and Ottoman Greeks […]
Why did Benjamin of Tudela write that the Vlachs in Greece were treating travellers of Jewish origin better? Why did the Vlachs tell him, “that’s because we are cousins”?
Benjamin of Tudela, a Jewish traveller from Spain, visited Greece around 1170, when the Jews of Greece were all Romaniotes (Greek-speaking). Benjamin’s fellow Sephardic Jews only moved to Greece when they were expelled from Spain, three hundred years later. So whatever was going on, it was not because of any linguistic kinship between the Vlachs’ […]
How is the letter Y (ypsilon) pronounced in modern Greek and how was it pronounced in ancient times?
Our guesses for Ancient Greek are that it was /u/ in most ancient dialects of Greek, and /y/ (German ü) in Attic. Upsilon was the last letter to change pronunciation in Modern Greek, to /i/. <oi> had also come to be pronounced as /y/ in late Antiquity (they are routinely confused, only with each other, […]
Why is “damn” considered a dirty word while “condemn” is not?
Because, for better or worse, damn is what God does, and condemn is what a judge does. So damn picked up the religious and then blasphemous connotations which condemn never had, which made it much more eligible as a profanity. Profanity is all about the current taboos in society. Answered 2017-05-27 [Originally posted on http://quora.com/Why-is-damn-considered-a-dirty-word-while-condemn-is-not/answer/Nick-Nicholas-5]
Why do Greek textbooks and paradigm references disagree on pluperfect endings, and how do I determine which are more standard for Attic vs Hellenistic?
http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/morph?l=%E1%BC%90%CE%BB%CE%B5%CE%BB%CF%8D%CE%BA%CE%B5%CE%B9%CE%BC%CE%B5%CE%BD&amp;la=greek If you want to go digging about this kind of thing, go digging in a German grammar. Dig in something that spends 300 pages on the different variants of verb ending. Kühner–Blass, §213.5. The original Pluperfect Active endings in the singular were -ea, -eas, -ee(n), which contract in Attic regularly to –ē, -ēs, -ein. […]
Who could show me an example of the ending -κειμεν?
Well, this is a “late” (i.e. Koine) variant of the 1pl pluperfect active ending -κεμεν, as in “we had untied, ἐλελύ-κεμεν”. So you won’t likely get a Classical form. The earliest instance I find is in Aristotle, Metaphysica 1041a: καίτοι κἂν εἰ μὴ ἑωράκειμεν τὰ ἄστρα, οὐδὲν ἂν ἧττον, οἶμαι, ἦσαν οὐσίαι ἀΐδιοι παρ’ ἃς […]
When and how did modern Turkish become the majority in Anatolia?
I’ve put off answering this question for ages, and I’ve finally looked at the classic work on the topic, Vryonis: Decline of Medieval Hellinism in Asia Minor Here’s the quick summary. The Turks came from parts East, in several waves: first the Seljuk Empire, then the various emirates that ended up being incorporated into the […]
The word Ἀρσένιος (Arsenios) is latinized to Arsenius. Does the word θηλυκός (thēlykós) have a latinized form other than femina?
Bit of a misunderstanding here. The proper name Arsenius, Greek Arsenios (as in Arsenio Hall) is derived from the Greek word for ‘man’, arsen. But it was not the normal word for “masculine”, and LSJ records arsenios meaning “masculine” only once in a third century AD papyrus. The normal word for masculine was arsenikos (seemingly […]