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GREEK ALPHABET

English 214 Michael Pazinas

UPPERCASE

ΑΒΓΔΕΖ ΗΘΙΚΛΜ ΝΞΟΠΡΣ ΤΥΦΧΨΩ

December 2011

Suleiman Mosque in Rhodes, Greece built in 1522

The Greek alphabet has got 24 letters and originates from the Ancient Phoenician alphabet

Greece Past & Present

α β γ δ ε ζ η θ ι κ λ μ ν ξ ο π ρ σ τ υ φ χ ψ ω LOWERCASE An Ancient Cycladic Vase

A Fishing boat (Kaiki) A Sketch of the Acropolis in Athens

Further Reading: The Foods of Greece by Aglaia Kremezi Learn Greek in 25 Years by Brian Church My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell It’s All Greek to Me! By John Mole The Greek Way by Edith Hamilton A Concise History of Greece by Richard Clogg


GREEK LANGUAGE

Greece Past & Present

The Greek language is composed of 24 letters. It is an Indo-European Language and is very important in the history of Europe. It originated from the Phoenician script and became the basis for Latin, Cyrillic and Coptic. In ancient times, Greek was used as a Lingua Franca (A common language used among people whose first language is different). Today, Greek is the official language of Greece and Cyprus. In English, 25% of all words come from Greek. Traditional Housing in the Peloponnese in Greece

ANCIENT GREECE Greece has a very old and long history. The period of classical Greece began with the fighting off of the Persians by the Athenians. Later, Alexander the Great formed the Hellenistic civilization which spread from Central Asia to the Mediterranean. Ancient Greece affected many cultures, especially the Romans. Many people consider Greece to be the foundation of Western civilization. But did you know that Islamic scholars also used Ancient Greek knowledge in addition to their own? During the Islamic Golden Age, many scholars regarded Hippocrates (An ancient Greek physician) as a very important scientist. Thousands of writings were translated from Greek into Arabic. The Arabs were then able to produce new medical knowledge. They made it easier, ordered and systematic so that they could teach it easily to their students.

PLACES TO VISIT IN GREECE Best Greek Islands: Santorini, Paros, Crete, Karpathos, Lefkada, Kefalonia, Amorgos. Best Castles: Rhodes, Methoni, Monevasia, Nayplio. Best Towns and Villages: Lefkes (Paros), Ia (Santorini), Githio (Lakonia), Makrinitsa (Pilio), Zagoria (Ioannina), Olympos (Karpathos), Pylos (Messinia), Hania (Crete) and Kosmas (Lakonia) . . . Oh and don’t forget Athens and Thessaloniki.

GREEK FOOD In the past the ancient Greeks used to eat a variety of different food. This included, bread, olives, chestnuts, figs, nuts, raisins, fish, octopus, hare, goose, lentils and vegetable soup. Today, Greeks eat all of those things. However, among other things, they also eat grilled octopus, vine leaves stuffed with meat and rice, Moussaka (a tasty dish with beef, aubergines, potatoes and a cream sauce) and they also like sweets: Halva, Baklava and even yoghurt with nuts and honey.

MODERN GREECE Modern Greece shares its borders with Albania, FYROM and Bulgaria to the North and Turkey to the East. Eighty percent of Greece is mountainous and the highest mountain is called Olympus. Greece also has a beautiful coastline and about 1,400 islands but only 229 are inhabited. The name of Greece (in English) comes from the Latin word Graecia. But the Greeks refer to Greece as Ελλάς or Ελλάδα (Hellas). Today, Greece is a republic and its main income is from Tourism and agriculture. The country is currently suffering a terrible economic crisis and many people are angry at the situation. However, it does indeed remain a beautiful country and it has exported many famous Greeks including: Maria Kallas, El Greco, Georgios Papanikolaou, Joseph Sifakis and Odysseus Elytis.


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