Re: Pronunciation of koine

From: Davis Phillips (
Date: Tue Feb 20 1996 - 10:37:49 EST

Kevin W. Woodruff wrote:
> Dr. Spiros Zodhiates advocates the Modern Greek pronunciation
and has a tape set in which he reads the whole Greek Testament through with
that pronunciation
it is available from AMG International, 6815 Shallowford Rd. Chattanooga, TN
(423/894-6060) Kevin W. Woodruff

-- A couple of more comments:
(1) Re/the TAPES
 In ordering, you should specify that you want NT in koine greek with modern
pronunciation (rather than NT in Modern Greek with modern pronunciation,
which Dr. Z has also recorded).

 Re/ Dr. Zodhiates' tapes, I purchased the NT set about 10-15 years ago; the
recording was 'fairly good quality" -- I had to turn the volume up fairly
high on my tape player to hear distinctly. A few parts, perhaps the gospel
of John and/or 1 John are recorded more SLOWLY than many other parts, which
is a help for novices. I think at the time I purchased the set, one could
elect to purchase only vol 1 (John thru Acts) or vol 2 (Epistles and Rev.).
(Acts may
be in vol. 2, I forget.)

p.s, a Berlitz or other modern greek conversation tape can also give you a
feel for modern
Greek pronunciation.

(2) Re/Erasmian v. Modern Pronunciation
---> for Erasmian:
    (1) The different vowels and diphthongs are pronounced differently (so
that remembering
           the sound of a word will help you remember the spelling)
    (2) Mostly used in U.S. academia
---> for modern:
    (1) One can read out loud faster.
    (2) It sounds like modern Greek, which is a living language, and
becoming familiar with
         the modern sounds will help you if you visit Greece, or study
modern Greek.
  (3) It's probably more like the 1st century koine pronunciation. (When I
began looking at
        photographs of Greek biblical manuscripts from 200 AD to 1400 AD;
the multitude of
          'strange' spellings did not seem at all strange, when I used the
modern pronunciation.)
----> againts modern: (1) Pronunciation often (usually) does not help to
remember how to spell words.
      (I, OI, H, EI, HI are all pronounced 'ee'; AI and E are both short 'e')

 I have been reading greek as a hobby for about 25 years. Sometimes I use
the Erasmian, sometimes the modern. To sum up, I think both are very
useful, and one
should eventually try using both.

 Davis Phillips, Senior Systems Analyst, College of Liberal Arts
 University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712 USA
 Phone: (512) 471-4141 FAX: (512) 471-4518

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