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KOINE GREEK IS NOT A DEAD LANGUAGE ...
What is ἡ κοινὴ προφορά 'Koine pronunciation'?
... and does it really matter for learning the language?
We pronounce Greek as it was pronounced in the Roman period (but with Byzantine/modern fricatives).
How do we know?
Documenting 'spelling mistakes' in ancient Greek inscriptions and papyri helps us reconstruct how it sounded.
Pronunciation is the language
Native speakers cannot separate pronunciation from language. It can and does affect meaning.
Retain your Greek better
Using a consistent and authentic pronunciation will help you learn and retain your vocabulary better.
Practice reading the ancient script in Koine pronunciation.
Learn to read ancient script while hearing ancient pronunciation. The reader displays the biblical text in five different scripts (Papyrus Uncial, Biblical Uncial, Medieval 11th century, Medieval 15th century, and Times New Roman) while playing the audio of that same text in historical Koine Greek pronunciation.
How can I keep time like the ancients in Koine Greek?
As a student or scholar of the Greek papyri, there are probably times where you come across something like Χοιάκ κγ or Τῦβι ιδ in a text and just sort of skip over it. You might think, "Yeah, Χοιάκ is the name of the month and κγ is a number". You might even know that κγ represents "23", but perhaps you don't know how to read that out in Greek so you suddenly switch from Greek to English to say "Χοιάκ 23". KoineGreek.com has made a resource that will enable you to follow the ancient calendar all in Koine Greek!
How can I learn to hear and speak Koine Greek?
New Koine Greek curriculum
The founder of KoineGreek.com, Benjamin Paul Kantor, is working with Biblical Language Center to produce a new Koine Greek curriculum based mainly on ancient Greco-Roman conversation manuals.
Greco-Roman Conversation Manuals
A collection of ancient conversation manuals that were actually used to teach Greek in the Greco-Roman world form the basis of the curriculum.
Can my children learn Koine Greek?
It's never too early to start teaching your children Koine Greek. Not only will this give you a fun way to connect with your child, but it will also help you grow your own Koine Greek fluency by leaps and bounds! I started teaching my son Koine Greek shortly after his first birthday. He is now three years old and we can carry on numerous activities in Koine Greek.
"Koine Greek is not a dead language ... "
KoineGreek.com's logo symbolizes its core content and mission, which is to bring users face to face with the Koine Greek language and its world at the touch of a button. This is done through audio, video, and text material.
Οὐκ ἐπ᾿ ἄρτῳ μόνῳ ζήσεται ἄνθρωπος, ἀλλ᾿ ἐπὶ παντὶ ῥήματι ἐκπορευομένῳ διὰ στόματος θεοῦ
'Not on bread alone shall man live, but on every word proceeding from the mouth of God' - Deut. 8.3/Matt. 4.4
Ὁμιλία, ἀναστροφή, τριβὴ καθημερινὴ ὀφείλει δοθῆναι πᾶσιν τοῖς παισίν, τοῖς μικροῖς καὶ τοῖς μείζοσιν, ἐπειδὴ ἀναγκαῖά εἰσιν.
'Speech, conversation, everyday usage ought to be given to all boys, [both] younger and older, since they are necessary.' - Colloquia Monacensia-Einsidlensia 3b (translation from Dickey 2012)
The foundational principles upon which this website is founded are summarized nicely in these two quotations, one from the holy scriptures and the other from a conversational handbook composed during the Roman period. Simply put, understanding the scriptures is of utmost importance. Accordingly, when learning the ancient languages in which they were written, we benefit most by immersing ourselves in authentic forms of the ancient language as an ancient language learner would have done.
While this website is indeed focused on Koine Greek in general, there is a special focus on the Greek scriptures, namely, the New Testament and the Greek Septuagint. Accordingly, this website exists to provide students of Koine Greek—we will always be students of Koine Greek, even if we are teachers—with audio/visual resources for the New Testament, the Greek Septuagint, and other Greek texts from the same period in the koine pronunciation, such as:
Audio Greek New Testament
Koine Greek Audio Recordings (non-Biblical Texts)
Koine Greek Videos (Biblical and non-Biblical Texts)
Resources on Historical Koine Greek Phonology and the Pronunciation of Koine Greek
Koine Greek Lexicon: English to Koine Greek Lexicon / Dictionary
Additionally, I will generally try to provide a bit of background about the original setting of a given genre of extra-biblical Koine material and the current state of scholarship via blog posts.
This endeavor rests on the foundational conviction that one cannot really learn a language unless they can hear it, speak it, and see it in action in addition to reading and writing it. Moreover, being able to interact with a language by speaking and hearing it is necessary to arrive at the highest possible proficiency in reading.
The utmost purpose of all of this, of course, is to know the scriptures and the Word of God. In Colossians, we read, καὶ πᾶν ὅ τι ἐὰν ποιῆτε, ἐκ ψυχῆς ἐργάζεσθε, ὡς τῷ κυρίῳ καὶ οὐκ ἀνθρώποις "and whatever you do, do it with all your heart, as unto the Lord and not unto men" (Col. 3:23). If we want to learn Greek to know the scriptures, we ought to do it with all our heart.
This is my contribution, by the grace of God, to help others to grow in their understanding of Greek and the scriptures.
Benjamin Paul Kantor, Ph.D. (Founder)
KoineGreek.com was founded in 2017 (under the name KaineDiatheke.com) by Benjamin Kantor. Benjamin Paul (Παῦλος) Kantor is a post-doc researcher at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, where he also currently teaches Modern Hebrew. He received his Ph.D. in Hebrew Bible from the University of Texas in 2017. This was after receiving his B.A. in Classical Studies with an emphasis in Greek from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2012. He specializes in the historical phonology of Hebrew and Greek and has particular interest in ancient Hebrew and Greek pedagogy.
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