Will you learn Ancient Greek with me, /his/?
We can make it in to a daily thing, like Japanese threads on /a/.
the introduction to Greek is very hard as it's a completely alien language if you wanna compare it to English or German. However, once you get the basics with the grammar and beginner words and all, it becomes much easier. It's still gonna be pretty weird though, some words are impossible to pronounce properly if you aren't Greek even if you speak it all your life.
It doesn't matter if you begin with modern Greek or ancient or the in between variant that no one uses anymore, you can easily make the jump between them afterwards if you want to, they are very similar languages.
I hope this goes somewhere, I'd love to learn Latin and Ancient Greek. And as far as I understand it, Koine and Ancient Greek aren't any different in writing, just pronunciation.
Proto-Indo European would be near-goddamn impossible, same with Proto-Slavic and Proto-Celtic. I wish there was more information easily available about Proto-Germanic, Gaulish and Brythonic.
Sanskrit wouldn't be that difficult, there's a lot of stuff available to learn it.
Ancient Egyptian generally gets left out when people talk about learning ancient languages, same with Old Persian, though I don't think there's much information on the latter.
They were pre-Phoenician-influenced Greek languages and were heavily influenced by Egyptian hieroglyphics, but yeah they count, they were spoken by two of the most based civilizations of the Bronze Age.
Linear A probably doesn't record Greek and we can't decipher it.
Linear B just records Mycenaean Greek, and if you think you want to learn it you should just get started on Homeric Greek and then work backwards into full Mycenaean and Linear B, though I can't imagine why anybody short of a philologist or linguist would want to learn anything pre-Homeric.
Just as a follow up, as some people have shown interest in Latin, it would likely be much easier, as we wouldn't have to learn a new language. Also, to all who speak French, Spanish or Italian, you likely wouldn't struggle too much.
The only proto-Hellenic society of Greek-speakers to occupy Greece were the Mycenaeans.
And calling them 'proto-Hellenic' is a misnomer. Mycenaean culture had (at least some) of the same gods, the same geographical distribution, and the same language (Mycenaean Greek was not proto-Greek, and Linear B is all written exactly the same with no regional variation).
Mycenaean art and architecture developed 'independently', but with heavy Minoan and Cycladic influence, eventually absorbing both peoples and cultures.
Also very little you can learn from reading Linear B. All Linear B texts are inventory lists, tax records, receipts, shipping manifests, lists of officials or governing bodies. I think there are a couple of 'dispatches' from Pylos too. They've also all been translated into English and modern Greek, and IPA symbols.
It's a real shame there is so little and that it details such mundane things. Gives us a little insight but not enough to really develop a picture of what Mycenaean society was like.
There's way much more stuff written in Greek than in Latin. Like ten times more. (I 've read it somewhere on /r/askhistorians before; they based it on some of the thesauri of the languages)
Might I suggest some candidates, most have already been posted?
>Ancient Greek (any variety)
I've looked at Hittite very briefly but I don't know what sort of resources exist to help learn it.
i'd be down for this- how would we organize this? daily exercises, q&a stuff?
i studied classical greek, latin, and old norse for about the equivalent of 6 years. plus 2 years of elementary hieroglyphics. sadly i don't get to use any of these languages in my day to day.
>not learning classical japanese
step up familia
I'm learning Latin right now at a university level. Honestly, I think maybe a Latin general with some conversations going in Latin would be neat! Same with other ancient languages. However , I'm sure the posts would just dissolve into shit posting in dead languages. Still fun though.
>and we can't know for sure
That isn't a contradiction. If it did contain Greek to the point the language it was written in was Greek chances are we'd have made more progress with it, especially since Linear B borrows symbols from it.
We've got two scripts used for writing Greek, Greek translated into Egyptian and Hittite and Latin, and we've got over 200 years of comparative analysis of Indo-European languages to Greek.
I'm not saying it -can't- be Greek, I'm just not convinced that it does.
For one thing Linear A predates the arrival of Greek speaker to the Greece peninsula. Too there is continuity of Minoan Palatial centers from the advent of Linear A until their decline and the rise of the Mycenaeans and appearance of Linear B.
>Linear A probably doesn't record Greek and we can't decipher it.
This meme needs to die. We can mostly decipher it (and in a small part even the Cretan Hieroglyphs) because of its similarity to Linear B. It's just that it records an indigenous Cretan, non-Indo-European language, so it's extremely hard to understand what is written here.
Not all hope is lost though: Etruscancs seem to have had some deep ties with Minoans and it turns out that there are very convincing similarities between their languages (google the Tyrrhenian language family). Indo-Europeans preserved translations of some Etruscan words and it can be actually used to very fragmentarily translate some of the Linear A texts.
Proto-Semitic or Sumerian is more interesting desu imo.
Slightly related, what are the word cognates in Proto-Afroasiatic if anyone knows? As far as I know, the only thing really obviously in common is the 'tyn verb paradigm.
Go with Latin instead. Trust me.
In my Greek and Latin classes, the Latin classes had a 50%~ attrition rate by midterms, and 75% attrition by second year. Greek had a 50% attrition rate after the first two classes, an 80% attrition rate by midterms, and a 90% attrition rate in second year.
Greek is not THAT much harder than Latin, all things considered, but it is much, much, much harder in the first year than Latin, because its morphology is so much more bloated. A week/chapter of Latin was evenly split between a new grammar concept, some new morphology, and then lots of reading practice. Every single Greek chapter was "you done memorising those 650 forms? Here's 650 more, and they're all subtle variations on the previous ones just to really fuck with your head!"
That's not that HARD, really, but it is annoying and boring. /lit/ Latin threads ground to a halt after the first week every single time, and that was /lit/, where the demographics are much more in your favour. Greek wouldn't have gotten past the first twenty minutes.
That said, if anyone wants to learn Greek, check out Hansen & Quinn. Pirate it and see if you can stick it out for five chapters.
If you want a piss-easy (basically for kids) primer in Koine, check out Basics of Biblical Greek.
>alright so here are the seventy thousand different forms for omega verbs, okay memorize these irregular verbs by the way, oh and if this verb ends in omicron, alpha, or any number of other retarded things here are the alternate forms for that. Next week we'll learn a different group of endings for a different group of verbs that will also have irregular endings strewn all over the place have fun
Still shit is fun. Being able to understand bits and pieces of herodtus gets my dick hard, and it's not a big leap from attic to koine.
>finally feel like i'm getting the hang of it
>turn the page over to this week's chapter
Teach me senpai
One thing I always wanted to know is, if languages get simpler over time (fewer tenses, cases, etc.), and we can see this general degeneration in the reconstructed common PIE ancestor of Greek and Latin, what the FUCK did the first full languages look like? Did they just have like sixty billion fucking tenses? Shouldn't it have started simple and become complex?!
it seems like this stuff is a lot harder to self study than modern languages. do we really think this is viable? having a thread for general chatter is one thing, but i'm not so sure how realistic self study would be. just my 2c
Greek (attic) and Latin are both not that hard to learn. Greek is hard at first as you try to wrap your mind around all the annoying concepts like accentuation irregular forms and cases/tense, but it really isn't THAT bizarre or complex.
I'd recommend reading pic related
It does a great job at illustrating how languages change over time, and why languages aren't necessarily degrading over time.
It is much much easier if you aren't a retard.
9 times out of 10 when someone says they study or know a modern langauge, even in college, they mean they can barely grope through some basic conversation like a gringo. This is because modern language pedagogy rests on its laurels in the assumption that "natural assimilation" means anything, and that it's better to have students ^___^ ~InTerEsTeD aNd EnGaGeD~ ^__^ than sitting at their desks writing out paradigms and getting fingernails removed if they fuck up. The end result is that universities in North America churn out millions of students who think they know German because they got a B- in classes that didn't even teach them basic grammar until third year, and forced them to write German emails and sing party songs instead of reading literary prose.
The classical languages on the other hand, because they're not spoken or "living," are taught the only way languages actually can be: you sit down and you learn the grammar, build your vocab, and keep reading and writing until you stop fucking up. When you see a new word, you know every detail of its function in the sentence, and if you don't, you go back to the book and do that chapter again.
They lend themselves very well to self-study as a result. What does "self-study" mean in a French language thread? It means 20 people download Rosetta Stone and faggot Pimsleur and waste their time for a week before giving up because there's no sense of progress and it's all just fluff. Self-study in Greek or Latin means you are doing chapters that end in real readings, often from actual classical texts. If you can't do those readings, you can't progress, so you at least have an independent metric of success or failure.
Also, learning a classical language in this way will make you a pro at learning modern languages, because you'll cut through all the Rosetta Stone horseshit, locate the one real textbook that teaches by grammar, and never sound like a retarded gringo.
T H I S
"Learning" spanish in high school was a TOTAL waste of time. I remember virtually NOTHING from that class and I took it for two years. In half a semester I understand greek a thousand times better than I EVER understood spanish and I am BAD at greek.
Ancient Greek is really not that complex compared to modern, there is an extra case to signify "to whom" and lacks some of the simplifications that exist today for the sake of ease, like using monotonic orthography instead of polytonic.
i don't think that's a fair comparison though, living languages are taught to meet different expectations and use cases- most of the time to speak and have conversations in the language. of course, effectiveness of any course / study is contingent on the investment someone makes (thus many of these rosetta learners are doomed to fail, because they don't expect to make that true investment).
i do agree classical languages are not necessarily more challenging, but i don't think it's because we build from vocab and grammar alone (technically you should do this for ALL languages, and if you don't, then whatever you are learning is very flawed). not having to speak is a definite bonus though lol.
>if languages get simpler over time (fewer tenses, cases, etc.),
Because they can gain new tenses and cases just as often as they lose them. Latin and Greek both actually have more verb tenses than Proto-Indo-European.
Begin with the Babylonians OP
>/lit/ Latin threads ground to a halt after the first week every single time, and that was /lit/, where the demographics are much more in your favour. Greek wouldn't have gotten past the first twenty minutes.
Huh? They had a weekly Greek thread going for months
Short answer is no. I have a Greek guy in my class and he says that because of the case system and mood, it would not be possible for him to understand it without some form of study.
That said, there are plenty of words that are precisely the same in Modern Greek, so while a Greek person today might not understand the sentence completely, he might be able to get what it says from context.
You're exaggerating anon, other than the extra case to signify "to whom" as well as the dual form, there is not much difference in complexity (polytonal orthography notwithstanding).
Here are the results of the poll, ended at 6:00 pm EST. The top three are Latin, Greek, and Sanskrit. Makes me kind of sad because wanted to Confucian shitpost in classical chinese, but I digress.
Without searching particularly hard, I found these resources courtesy of /int/.
>some words are impossible to pronounce properly
Just a myth my dude
Once you get the idea of the IPA wrapped around your head and learn the terms you can pronounce pretty much anything that isn't Taa tier clicks
knock yourself out then m8
none of this is complicated jargon
Obviously most of these are just shots in the dark, but it's still an interesting video.
I'm a total linguistics autist so I'd love a ancient language general.
I'm a historical linguist. I specialize in Indo-European.
First off, the order of learning should always be:
Latin, then Greek, then Sanskrit
Latin is always the best place to start seeing that memorizing the vocab is less of a burden (more obvious cognates/borrowings), and you can focus on learning the basic structure of a true-blue Indo-European language.
Greek comes next, as people have said, there's a lot more arbitrariness/irregularity in Greek. Once your nuts are huge, you go on to Sanskrit, which should be a breeze by then.
There's no meaningful way you can "learn" a proto-language. They're just theoretical constructs, more or less, and constructs that are constantly changing because our knowledge of their descendants is changing.
By the way, there are some ancient languages, like say Hittite, which are basically unlearnable in the same way because our knowledge of their sound/morphological system is incomplete. Hittite is partially written in logographs, which impairs our ability to understand what's actually going on.
top kek. mega upboats to this post
Naw. Languages generally only simplify when in constant social/economic contact with other languages (this is how English, Chinese, Persian etc. have become extremely un-morphological in a short time). If that's not the case, languages are usually grammaticalizing new categories non-stop: expressions gradually become shortened into morphemes. Take the famous example of the future tense in Spanish/French/other Romance languages: the entire tense was created over a hundred or so years from the Latin infinite and 'have' verb.
Frankly, they're not that bad. Reconstructed PIE doesn't have the irregularity in Greek or Sanskrit. So long as you know how the phonological system works, all you have to do is tack on one of the two personal endings to the right stem.
/a/ managed to keep their Japanese thread going. Granted they have a lot of no-life neets and a big user base, but if we can't at least manage weekly threads we should be ashamed of ourselves as a group.
I was rooting for it, too.
These are questions we all need to sort out. I'm up for people picking one language and contributing to the thread, thus keeping it alive. In that why we could possibly add the minor languages like Old English without causing too much of a stir. From what I know about /int/'s languages generals, it's a pretty relaxed atmosphere where you go to practice your skills or ask for help.
>mfw I'm studying for a Bachelor's in this shit and I can't even understand half of it
can you give some provisional translation then?
it's just too subtle for what you are saying. the grammar is fundamentally different. things as subtle as a single term in a subordinate clause can change a type of clause into a completely different type - using word for "not" instead of the other word for "not" can make a clause go from "therefore we shouldn't do x" to "because we haven't yet done x."
Add resources to the OP for the top 5 languages we voted for instead of the top 3, and allow everyone to go their own path at their own pace. Just keep the threads going for discussion, helping each other out, and testing what we've learned. Judging by what I've read in this thread, I think there would be enough of a mixture to keep it healthy.
That's what I propose.
I would like to do Arabic too, but technically Arabic is not an "ancient language" since it is not directly attested before 400CE (the marker of the end of "Antiquity"). Obviously though pre-classical Arabic, Proto-Arabic existed then of course, all the way back to the Central Semitic language split.
I think if the mods see that it's goal is noble and pure and not a giant excuse for circlejerk and shitposting. They will turn a blind eye. It all depends on how we conduct ourselves really, if we shitpost and act like retards it will probably get closed down, if we act like people who actually want to learn some ancient languages, maybe not.
To make you understand, it is Much easier to learn Modern Greek while knowing Ancient Greek than it is to learn Italian via Latin.
There was a multilingual guy on youtube (dekaglossai) who was talking about his experience on that and compared the hours he needed to learn. I don't remember the exact numbers but Modern Greek needed like less than half of the hours that were need for Italian.
There is a GIANT body of work in classical attic Greek, like almost a millenia worth of shit. From like fucking Plato and earlier, to Procopius of Caesura (his stuff is really funny to read by the way, if only because of how he tries to weasel out of using any of the new words in common usage at the time.)
I'm voting for top three, but only in the sense that the thread should be specifically focused on those three, the more minor languages should be allowed alongside too, but my gut tells me they won't have enough interest over time.
That's way too many generals.
The thread can't be pushed off the board with the lapse between posting rates.
Also, consider the number of threads, the number of individuals contributing to the resources, and anything else regarding the number of posters actually learning that language.
Early splitting might be a really bad idea, we don't know how interest is gonna come and go. I think we should remain flexible at the start. Maybe this will take off in a big way and we can start splitting off as languages gain enough constant posters to support their own threads, or start crowding out other discussions. However, it could just as easily end up being a smattering of discussion between two or three languages that manages to support just one thread at a time.
But Muhammad did not live in "Antiquity" since that is usually defined as pre-400 AD. Quranic Arabic thus is not "ancient", neither is any pre-Islamic attestation since they are all post-400 AD
>smattering of discussion between two or three languages that manages to support just one thread at a time.
Which sounds far more likely.
How many individuals were voting for a language they want to learn as opposed to voting for a language they are interested / were already considering learning
Why doesn't everyone on /his/ just learn Irish?
Most beautiful language out there and even the almighty British Empire couldn't put it down after 500 years of genocide and tyranny. Also there's plenty of material on how to learn it and it gives you access to a lot of classic Irish literature as well as a gateway to other Celtic languages.
How to learn Ancient Greek and/or Latin
1-Get out of 4chan
2-Get Learn to Read Greek/ Learn To Read Latin from Yale Press. (Tried a lot of books, athenaze, cambridge, wheelock, lingua latine per se Illustrata, personally Yale's books are the best, very comprehensive and very recently published)
3-Mail the Yale Publishers to get the answerkey webpage
4-Began to study, ask any questions you have on plebbit/4chinz/language forums
1-You can only learn a langauge on your own, avoid group studies.
2-Everyone has a different method / pace in learning, you might even find some other book better etc
t. ancient history phd fag
I'm sure you're not the only one.
But I'm not totally convinced in any sense of proportionality.
East vs West language generals would clear this right up. If one dies, you can just merge it into a larger general; if posting grows too often, you can fracture it.
>mfw former advisor's page is posted
feels good man
i meant top 3 languages should get their own, or at least some sense of separation. for example, greek & latin together is doable, and definitely should maintain enough interest to stay alive. otherwise it gets far too convoluted to put them all together.
This is exactly right. It would be great to have an online community of people who come here and shitpost in Latin, but when it comes down to it, you have to do the learning yourself. Language threads are for fun/a reward.
Hey faggots, go to textkit dot com, and download Collar and Daniel's Beginner's Latin Book and start going through it now. Print that shit out on half pages if you have to. But go through it or learn it and then come here funpost.
OK fuck me this was pretty hard, basically because it's heavily philosophical and I was shit outta luck with many words.
Anyway, I did my best, parts with (?) probably have the wrong context:
"breaking the lyre and destroying the string(s), using the same argument as you, that the harmony does not disappear - no one can imagine that the lyre with the strings that are mortal and breaking (?), and the harmony which is divine and immortal, disappears before the mortal - but it is obvious that the harmony must be somewhere, and the wood and strings are destroyed first before anything happens to that (harmony) - that thought, Socrates, is something that you've also thought of, that such is what we consider the soul, that the body is held by hot, cold, dry and wet, then the soul is constituted by the harmony of all those together - but when the soul loses its harmony, when the body breaks down completely due to disease or other injury, then the soul perishes at once, divine as it is, like harmony of music and other works of art, the remains of the body can remain for a long time, until they are burnt or decayed - what do we say (?), if the soul dies first to disappear in what we call death."
I also did that (as far as I recall reading greek of the join classical association uk) Yale press was better, at least for me
far more brutal far more comprehensive with no bullshit information
Spaniard here (although trilingual in English, Spanish and Portuguese) and I've noticed how much the pronunciation of spoken Modern Greek resembles that of Spanish. Assuming the words are constructed similarly (that is, each word sounds the exact same as when it gets read, unlike English), would it be easier for me to learn Ancient Greek? Moreover, I'm currently doing History and Archaeology, so I believe it would give me a broader understanding of Hellenistic sources if I was to read them in the language they were written instead of the English translations.
>Spanish and Portuguese
kek, like those count seperately in terms of knowing languages. That's like Danish and Swedish. Yeah, they are different languages, but if you know one, it's like having to learn half (maybe even less) a language for the next.
>I've noticed how much the pronunciation of spoken Modern Greek resembles that of Spanish.
How? They have a bunch of phonemes you lack (Ancient Greek is more similar phonetically to Spanish).
>Assuming the words are constructed similarly (that is, each word sounds the exact same as when it gets read, unlike English), would it be easier for me to learn Ancient Greek?
The phonetic reading of Greek is easy and regular. Unlike ancient greek though, one sound does not necessarily correspond to one letter in modern greek.
I know we're not official "begun" yet, but I'm doing my Greek practice and I was wondering if any of you who know greek could help me here.
είς τάς αυτάς συμφοράς
είς αυτάς τάς συμφοράς
I understand αυτάς could mean multiple things here, and in one of these it's supposed to intensify and the other imply the same, but I'm kinda stumped.
Spanish isn't really any closer to Greek in origin than English is.
Spanish and Modern Greek do *sound* somewhat similar, but this is mostly an accident of history: both languages have happened upon similar stress patterns and also fricitivize intervocalic voiced stops (so they both end up using sounds that many other European languages don't ( like [ð, ɣ, β])). Ancient Greek is even more different.
But yeah ancient Greek, like Spanish and every other language that wasn't born with extra chromosomes, is read pretty much how it is spelt.
I think that was it; if a kind latin poster would begin the language thread after gathering resources then we could start. In the meantime I'll be trying to teach myself Old English so I can help out when the time comes.
We will have a single thread, wont we? But it'll be primarily dedicated to the 3 with the most votes?
Theres nothing stopping people from posting resources/discussing other languages.
As for when we start: It's an individual process, the thread should serve mostly for questions and answers and the gathering/searching of resources.
That's what the thread probably will be.
It will mostly be one language at a time, but if someone has a question about Hittite or Egyptian languages no one will get mad at you for asking. The people who are likely to know that will be using the thread anyway
Pig latin is a made up language that sounds like latin. You take all the letters of a word before the vowel and move them to the back, then add an "ay" to the end.
igpay atinlay isay easyay.
Okay guys, question. I'm a Classics major but I'm not specializing in languages. Still, I see some value in linguistics and I really like reading about this stuff.
I'm interested in learning, but know only English. These are the languages that interest me:
I know the first two are beyond the scope of this thread, but where should I begin? For personal reasons I would like to learn Greek asap but I am remarkably terrible at French and Greek already....
I'm doing this for the languages I want to learn. I bet German and maybe Greek have DuoLingo resources, which is a pretty acclaimed language learning website.
You need to put the αυτάς at the beginning of the sentence. Correct syntax would be "αυτάς είς τάς συμφοράς".
Only adjectives can stand between the definitive article and the noun as far as I know.