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Modern Greek did not suddenly arise in the last thirty or fifty years, but is the product of an uninterrupted process stretching back over forty centuries. It is the only European language to demonstrate such historical and cultural continuity.

This is why is has a special place among the 2,700 languages of the world.

Greek belongs to the Indo-European family of languages, which are closely related from a structural (grammatical and syntactic) and lexical point of view, and differ from all other tongues. The development of the particular linguistic characteristics of the Greek language, distinguishing it from the rest (ancient Indian, Germanic and Slavic, etc.), obviously arose after the Greeks had moved away from the other Indo-European peoples, probably in the 3rd millennium BC.

The Greeks entered the geographical area, which was to be named after them, in waves, at least as early as 2000 BC.

Greek is a cultured language par excellence, moulded for over 30 centuries in order to express the fine concepts of political oration and state institutions, the complex concepts of evangelical speech and patristic theology, and the profound philosophical concepts of ancient drama, poetry and prose.

It is obviously no coincidence that most international scientific terminology in various branches of science (medicine, physics, philology, philosophy, theology, technology, etc.) is based on Greek stems, words or components.

Most speakers of German or Japanese, say, do not even suspect that thousands of words in the international vocabulary are Greek loan-words in their languages. Of the  166,724 English words in Webster’s Dictionary, it is estimated that 35,136 are Greek or based on Greek.

It is natural for a language with a 4,000-year history, such as Greek, to have experienced changes in vowels and pronunciation, grammatical and syntactical structure, and expression. However, these changes have not proved sufficient to alter Greek to such an extent that a modern Greek, with a little effort and the correct guidance, cannot more or less understand an ancient text.


orthodox church in Santorini

 
 
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