Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics

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Subject: Language and Linguistics

General Editor: Georgios K. Giannakis
Associate Editors: Vit Bubenik, Emilio Crespo, Chris Golston, Alexandra Lianeri, Silvia Luraghi, Stephanos Matthaios

The Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics (EAGLL) is a unique work that brings together the latest research from across a range of disciplines which contribute to our knowledge of Ancient Greek. It is an indispensable research tool for scholars and students of Greek, of linguistics, and of other Indo-European languages, as well as of Biblical literature.

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(2,275 words)

Author(s): Silvia Luraghi
Abstract The Greek gender system consists of three genders: masculine, feminine and neuter, and largely coincides with the reconstructed gender system of PIE. Gender assignment rules are partly semantic (animate nouns are most often assigned gender based on the sex of the referents), partly morphological (e.g. no nouns in the - ā- declension are assigned neuter gender; various derivational suffixes assign gender to derivative nouns), and partly arbitrary. To some extent, the evolution of gender is connected with the evolution of inflectional classes.   As noted in Wurzel (1989)…
Date: 2013-11-01


(2,291 words)

Author(s): Maria Carmela Benvenuto
Abstract The syntactic functions and/or semantic roles encoded by the Ancient Greek genitive do not coincide precisely with the uses of the genitive in other Indo-European languages. Indeed, the A.Gk. genitive is a result of IE genitive-ablative merging and it combines the functions of both cases comprising, besides possessive and partitive meanings (typically expressed by the genitive in IE languages), spatial meanings (typically expressed by the ablative in IE languages). The genitive is the un…
Date: 2013-11-01

Genitive Absolute

(2,379 words)

Author(s): Michel Buijs
Abstract A genitive absolute (gen. abs.) is a construction consisting of, at least, a ptc. in the genitive case, and, usually, a noun in the genitive case agreeing with the ptc. in gender and number. The construction is called ‘absolute’ because the noun in the genitive case does not perform a syntactic function in the matrix clause; this noun performs the syntactic function of the subject of the participial predicate. The ptc. is characterized for diathesis and either for verbal aspect (pres., a…
Date: 2013-11-01

Gerundive (Verbal Adjective)

(1,640 words)

Author(s): Yves Duhoux
Abstract The gerundive, or better the verbal adjective of obligation, is an adjective consisting of a verbal root and the suffix -téos. It expresses that the verbal action must or should be performed: ōphelētéā soi h ē pólis estí  ‘the city must be helped by you’ (Xen. Mem. 3.6.3). The verbal adjective of obligation seems to occur in the Linear B bookkeeping texts, but then disappears for ca 700 years. It reappears in the 5th c. BCE and there is mainly used in plays and literary prose. After the Classical period, the verbal adjective of obli…
Date: 2013-11-01

Gerund (Verbal Noun)

(2,008 words)

Author(s): Yves Duhoux
Abstract The gerund, or better the articular infinitive or verbal noun, is the name given to the combination of an article followed by an infinitive, e.g. tò drân, lit. ‘the (action of) doing’. The use of the article makes the gerund’s role as substantive more obvious than the bare infinitive does. The articular infinitive appears after Homer and reaches its most developed state in the 5th c. The peak of its popularity comes at the beginning of the Koiné, ca 400 BCE, but a decline follows in the Roman period, and it eventually disappears.   The gerund, or better the articular/substantiviz…
Date: 2013-11-01