Reading Greek

I’ve recently been given an opportunity at the seminary to read a textbook to be recorded for students who are visually impaired. I will be reading Dan Wallace’s Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics and will have to have the whole thing read in a month!

This is such a great opportunity not only to be of help to fellow students, but also to sharpen my Greek skills. I must admit that oftentimes when exegeting I don’t take the time to actually vocalize the text. In preparing to read Wallace’s text, I’ve been simply reading the Greek text aloud in an effort to refine pronunciation. Generally when I focus on particulars in the text, it’s the morphemes of particular words, not so much how they are pronounced. It’s a harder task than I expected, simply because I don’t normally read aloud. I have heard of others who do so regularly and have found it to be helpful, so perhaps I will make this a regular practice.

What about you? Do you normally read the Hebrew/Greek text aloud or do you just read it? Has vocalizing it been helpful?

Αυτω η δοξα,



11 thoughts on “Reading Greek”

  1. What a wonderful ministry the Lord has given you, Jason! I am SO excited for you. May He bless your every syllable as you read aloud for His glory. Please let me know if and when your recording becomes available for a wider public. Thanks!

  2. When I come across Greek or Hebrew in the books I’m reading I usually stop to read them aloud. I’m in the process of re-learning the way I pronounce Greek so it’s good practice for me.

  3. Dr. Black: Thank you for your kind words. I don’t know about the availability beyond students who might need it, but I don’t know that you would find joy in me reading Wallace aloud! Then again, perhaps you might!

    Nick: Just be sure you pronounce the omicrons with a short “o” sound! 😉

  4. I’ve found it pretty useful. As I’ve been memorizing I’ve (obviously) been pronouncing. It helps me get a feel for the flow of the text, and also helps me notice unusual things (marked I guess it the word?).

    However, I’m sure my pronunciation is terrible. It’s some weird mix of Erasmian and my own intuition, since I’ve never had a Greek class.

  5. Alex: I need to commit more Greek to memory (scripture, that is), so perhaps in my reading some will stick! I think the debate over pronunciation will endure. I pronounce the way I heard my professors pronounce, so I’m just a product of their preferences.

  6. Jason: Oh no, not accents, we like accents! Just not those breathing marks. Oh, and most of your diphthings should sound like long Es. But I won’t give you too much light in one day; I wouldn’t want to blind you! 😛

  7. It’s the smooth breathing marks that are by far the worst! When reading John 1, I mixed it up and was definitely saying hEN hARCH hHN… Not only was I wrong, but it was quite difficult to pronounce!

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