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Greek Language and Literature

This module is for those who are coming to Warwick with a good pass in Greek at GCSE or for those at the University have previously completed the Greek Language module.

It is important that all students who take this course have reacquainted themselves with the language before arriving this October. This is particularly important for those who did not do Greek in the 6th form and so have not looked at the language for two (or more) years or those who did a course in the 6th form on a reduced timetable. You are expected to start the course with the level of knowledge you had when sitting the GCSE examinations. You will sit a diagnostic test in your first week.

Warwick uses John Taylor’s Greek to GCSE for its course for beginners.  You should get a copy of Part 2 (Second Edition) to help you in your revision. The 300 sentences at the end are very helpful.

Vocab / Grammar / Advice



Vocabulary

Language is at the core of the module, and the heart of any language is vocabulary. You need to know all the vocabulary that is given in Chapters 1 to 10. This is listed conveniently on pages 234-246 of Book 2. The tester on the Eton College website is a first-class resource. Use it, typing in meanings in English. Use it to pinpoint words that you have forgotten. 



Grammar

You should also revise grammar. You will need to buy a copy of A Greek Grammar by James Morwood, published by Oxford University Press, and know your way around it but if you have used Taylor so far, you may prefer to revise from this prior to the start of the course.

Experience has shown that not all first years have as good a knowledge and recognition of case endings as they should. You should know the case endings for the main regular and irregular declensions thoroughly and be able to recognise cases quickly and accurately.

  • There are nine nouns that you should know:

1. τιμή

2. κριτής

3. λόγος

4. δῶρον

5. ϕύλαξ, ϕύλακος

6. σῶμα, σώματος

7. γένος, γένους

8. βασιλεύς, βασιλέυς

9. πόλις, πόλεως

You should be able not only to write down the declensions quickly and confidently, but also be able to recognize cases in context. The case tester on the Eton College website is excellent in this respect.

  • Once you have revised these, check on how adjectives work (know what a 3:1:3 adjective is) and then pronouns.
  • Verbs, including participles, are a key part of Greek. You should have a good working knowledge of tenses, being able to recognise the tenses and translate them appropriately.
  • You should have an excellent good knowledge of the four indicative tenses of παύω and the participles. Revise also the epsilon-contracted ϕιλέω. We will look subjunctives and optatives in Chapter 11 of the Taylor at the start of term.
  • Many students find it helpful to summarise the tenses of the indicative by giving the 1st person only in a tabular format. Once the principles are understood, this can easily be extended to participles, infinitives, and imperatives. A copy of the Verb Table Template is here and you should be able to write these out confidently and accurately.
  • Work on verbs also needs to include irregular aorists, a list of which is on page 217 of Taylor.
  • To bring this all revision together, I recommend that you read some of the passages in Chapter 10. If you would like feedback or help before you arrive, you can email me your translation at the email address below.

Finally, it is worth knowing that those who have completed the Greek Language module at the University tend to have a better knowledge of the grammar than those coming from outside. You must come up properly prepared in order to get off to a good start.  



Further advice

If you want any guidance, please email the Module Tutor, Clive Letchford, at c.a.letchford@warwick.ac.uk