How does Smyth's grammar compare to Goodwin's?

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Stephen Hughes
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Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

How does Smyth's grammar compare to Goodwin's?

Post by Stephen Hughes » April 17th, 2015, 9:46 am

More delvings into the 19th and early 20th century . . .

Smyth succeeded Goodwin at Harvard.

What are the general differences between the grammars of the two?

Am I right in assuming that there was no lineage from Hadley and Allen's to Goodwin's grammar?
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: How does Smyth's grammar compare to Goodwin's?

Post by cwconrad » April 17th, 2015, 10:13 am

Stephen Hughes wrote:More delvings into the 19th and early 20th century . . .

Smyth succeeded Goodwin at Harvard.

What are the general differences between the grammars of the two?

Am I right in assuming that there was no lineage from Hadley and Allen's to Goodwin's grammar?
I think that Mike Aubrey has probably done more careful study of the history of Greek grammatical reference works, so he may have something more useful to say on the subject. I shall offer no more than a couple more-or-less "obvious" comments:
(1) Smyth's exposition of phonology, morphology, syntax, principles of word-formation, and concise listing of major Greek verbs may not present the "last word" to be said on any particular matter of Greek grammar, but for English-speaking readers there is really no substitute;
(2) One extraordinary virtue of Smyth's grammatical expositions is that his versions of Greek constructions are almost always both idiomatic English and helpful in clarifying the point of usage under discussion.
I might add what should also be obvious to anyone who has consulted Smyth: the focus is on Classical Attic; while it is helpful with Homer and with Biblical Koine, it will not suffice as the sole reference grammar in those areas.
οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

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