My responses interspersed. I appreciate your help Randall. At the least I want to represent your restored Koine correctly.
Post by RandallButh » June 19th, 2011, 4:05 pm
> I guess I found the Erasmian chart above a little confusing.It probably would be for a linguist! But typical American students, at least in my classes, can't relate to the descriptions of the linguists! "Low front vowel," "centralized shva-sound," etc. mean nothing to them. I'm more interested in getting your koine correct than the Erasmain end of things, though I hear you on some of those items here as well.
> "alphabet". My dialect of English says "ae" [low, front vowel] for "alphabet", which is not a recognized Erasmian or Koine pronunciation for me. There should not be any difference between Erasmian and Koine for 'alpha'. Say, "aahh".OK, "say aahh" is probably better; I was trying to simplify too much and keep the letter name related to the sound.
> "zoo"? Koine uses the equivalent of English "z" here, so there wouldn't be a difference, if someone actually used "z" as Erasmian.I've seen quite a bit of diversity on this one. Some insist on "dz" others only "z" (all professing Erasmian). I happen to use just "z" and I've read/heard quite a few others who do the same.
> "optimum" for o-micron? Ouch! I pronounce "optimum" with the same sound as alpha "aahh". That mixes alpha and omicron in what would best be avoided in the next generation. There is no reason to perpetuate this.So what do you understand to be the "canonical" Erasmian pronunciation of omicron and is that the same or different in Restored Koine? I've heard you pronounce it "Oh-micron," but none of the Erasmian teachers I've ever heard do so.
>u-psilon as "ulcer"? In English I pronounce this with a centralized shva-sound "duh". In Koine and standard Erasmian it is the German or French "umlaut"-u sound, so there shouldn't be any difference here between Erasmian and Koine, but "ulcer" should not be chosen as an example word for either.It does an American student no good to tell him to use a German or French pronunciation that he does not know and has never heard. If we can't approximate it in English, then technical precision will be sacrificed (in my system!) for pedagogical purposes. Yes, a teacher could pronounce that sound for them, but how can it be represented in printed English using standard English words and sounds? Is the "oo" in "book" good enough? (I'd rather have an English word with "u" with the right sound...)
>"obey". There shouldn't be any difference here, either, between this Erasmian and Koine, though in reconstructed-Attic Erasmian, the o-mega is more of an "awe" sound.OK, so are you saying that my using "book" for Restored Koine" is not correct? (That's the sort of thing I'm really asking for in this post.) Would you accept "obey" as accurate for Koine?
> "weight"? I pronounce the vowel of "weight" and "ape" the same. Fortunately, here the Koine is distinct. ει is not pronounced the same as η in Koine.So is my "ski" accurate for Koine?
>"oi" is the same as u-psilon in Koine, the rounded "umlaut-u" sound of French and German. See comment on "ulcer" above.
>"ou" should not have any difference between Erasmian and Koine.So which English sound best represents this? soup? hoop? boot?
>I am not sure that "non-technical" has clarified things.Perhaps not. But my intention is to express your Koine pronunciation accurately with ordinary English sounds (as closely as we can) without using foreign letters or linguistic jargon (as my students perceive it). If you can endue such "foolishness" long enough to enable me to represent you accurately, I'd appreciate it.
Rodney J. Decker
Baptist Bible Seminary
Clarks Summit, PA
(See profile for my NTResources blog address.)