Beginning to Think in Greek

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Beginning to Think in Greek

Post by cwconrad » June 9th, 2011, 9:41 am

I'm not sure that Michael Gilleland's blog entitled "Laudator Temporis Acti" has been mentioned among blogs with frequent Greek (sometimes Biblical Greek) content: -- the title is from Horace's (Ars Poetica) phrase describing the typical aged man -- ("nostalgic for the good old days" I like to refer him as "The Old Curmudgeon." Today he has a snippet from C.S. Lewis' Surprised by Joy on his first introduction to Homer and his burgeoning facility to think in Greek. The feelings described in this snippet echo those that I had in my first year of grad school as I began plowing through the Iliad and Odyssey at the clip of 24 books of Homer in 30 days. The entry in question is at: ... greek.html
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

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

Posts: 53
Joined: June 2nd, 2011, 11:16 am
Location: Kansas City

Re: Beginning to Think in Greek

Post by refe » June 9th, 2011, 10:55 am

I love it! I'm not sure I'm quite there yet - sometimes I think I am, and then catch my mind slowly pulling the text back down into English translation like a hidden current. I have the most difficulty with the New Testament. The English translations are already so present in my mind after reading and re-reading them countless times throughout my life. I have to actively shut out the ghosts of the NASB, NIV and ESB or they never fail to obscure the Greek. Maybe that's the key - just plow through the texts until it's been so long since you read a word of English that you can't help but think in Greek!
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