Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Anything related to Biblical Greek that doesn't fit into the other forums.

Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Postby cwconrad » November 18th, 2013, 4:45 pm

This is, I confess at the outset, totally off-topic -- it bears no relationship to anything in Biblical Greek whatsoever -- but rather to classical Doric -- and Attic -- Greek. Nevertheless, I thought there might be one or two who'd find it of interest.

Tomorrow is the 150th anniversary of the original delivery of the Gettysburg Address. This morning’s New York Times Op-Ed section has a couple items on that speech. An editorial (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/18/opini ... ef=opinion) cites a former classicist, Gary Wills, “all modern political prose descends from the Gettysburg Address” noting the double sense of “descends” as a judgment of relative merit. In another (http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/20 ... ef=opinion) Allen C. Guelzo notes a comparison of Lincoln’s speech with the epgram of Simonides on the Spartan dead at Thermopylae:
ὦ ξεῖν, ἀγγέλλειν Λακεδαιμονίοις ὅτι τῇδε
κείμεθα, τοῖς κείνων ῥήμασι πειθόμενοι.

I’ve been thinking about both of these remarks repeatedly throughout the day, and also of something a visiting British professor of history said to an undergraduate class I attended more than half a century ago to the effect that there are only two great political speeches in history: Pericles’ oration over the Athenian dead of the first year of the Peloponnesian War and Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.

Guelzo refers to a volume of translation of the Gettysburg address into several languages but doesn’t cite it; I’ll check it out. But the idea of translating the Gettysburg Address into Greek strikes me as an interesting exercise.

In one of my last years before retiring I taught a class in Latin Prose Composition in which I assigned sections of several political speeches including Lincoln’s Second Inaugural, FDR’s First Inaugural, and JFK’s “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech for conversion into Ciceronian Latin. I picked the Second Inaugural rather than the Gettysburg Address because of the marvelous rhetorical wrestling with the question of theodicy in Biblical passages cited there.

I’m not seriously proposing a common effort to convert the Gettysburg Address into Greek. I don’t doubt that it has been done before and probably done well. I’d like to see what’s been done and I might like to give it a shot myself.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)
ὁ ἀναγινώσκων νοείτω
cwconrad
 
Posts: 1363
Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:52 pm
Location: Burnsville, NC 28714

Re: Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Postby Wes Wood » November 18th, 2013, 6:24 pm

If you find something that meets your standards or take up the task yourself, I for one, would be interested in seeing it.
"We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves."
-Galileo Galilei
Wes Wood
 
Posts: 276
Joined: September 20th, 2013, 8:18 pm

Re: Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Postby Alan Patterson » November 19th, 2013, 11:39 am

You may have already seen this, but here is the Gettysburg Address spoken in Modern Greek.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TuxXh5tZcQ
χαρις υμιν και ειρηνη,
Alan Patterson
Alan Patterson
 
Posts: 142
Joined: September 3rd, 2011, 7:21 pm
Location: Emory University

Re: Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Postby Mark Lightman » November 19th, 2013, 12:25 pm

εὐχόμεθα πάνυ ἵνα ἡ τοῦ δήμου πατρίς, σὺν θεῷ, γεννηθῇ ἄνωθεν ἐν ἐλευθερίᾳ, ὥστε μένειν εἰς τὴν χρῆσιν τῶν ἡμετέρων παίδων, ἀρχομένη μὲν ὑφ’ ἡμῶν, ὑπὲρ δὲ πάντων πανταχοῦ.

http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-foru ... 28&t=10415
Mark Lightman
 
Posts: 259
Joined: May 6th, 2011, 6:30 pm

Re: Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Greek?

Postby cwconrad » November 19th, 2013, 4:05 pm

Thanks, Mark. That's an interesting thread on TextKit.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)
ὁ ἀναγινώσκων νοείτω
cwconrad
 
Posts: 1363
Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:52 pm
Location: Burnsville, NC 28714


Return to Other

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron