The sun sets over the Parthenon and Acropolis in Athens.

Learning Greek

A Study Guide

Lessons 001 — 005

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Α / α, ά
0391 / 03b1, 03ac
Alpha
Β / β
0392 / 03b2
Beta
Γ / γ
0393 / 03b3
Gamma
Δ / δ
0394 / 03b4
Delta
Ε / ε, έ
0395 / 03b5, 03ad
Epsilon
Ζ / ζ
0396 / 03b6
Zeta
Η / η, ή
0397 / 03b7, 03ae
Eta
Θ / θ
0398 / 03b8
Theta
Ι / ι, ί
0399 / 03b9, 03af
Iota
Κ / κ
039a / 03ba
Kappa
Λ / λ
039b / 03bb
Lamda
Μ / μ
039c / 03bc
Mu
Ν / ν
039d / 03bd
Nu
Ξ / ξ
039e / 03be
Xi
Ο / ο, ό
039f / 03bf, 03cc
Omicron
Π / π
03a0 / 03c0
Pi
Ρ / ρ
03a1 / 03c1
Rho
Σ / σ, ς
03a3 / 03c3,03c2
Sigma
Τ / τ
03a4 / 03c4
Tau
Υ / υ, ύ
03a5 / 03c5, 03cd
Upsilon
Φ / φ
03a6 / 03c6
Phi
Χ / χ
03a7 / 03c7
Chi
Ψ / ψ
03a8 / 03c8
Psi
Ω / ω, ώ
03a9 / 03c9, 03ce
Omega

Notice that value 0x03a2 is reserved, and other values in the range 0x0390-0x03cf are used for letters with marks dialytika and tonos, e.g., 0x03b0 is for ΰ.


Lesson 001

singular plural
1st είμαι είμαστε
2nd είσαι είσαστει or είσει
3rd είναι είναι

The verb είμαι, I am. Its full conjugation in the present tense is shown in this table, although only the first person singular is used in this first lesson. (From this point forward, all verbs will be listed in this order, but "1st", "2nd", "3rd" and "singular", "plural" will be omitted.)

Definite article "the": ο (masculine), η (feminine), το (neuter):
ο Ανδρέας
η Έλλη
το βιβλίο

"This is ...." construction, as in:
Αυτό είναι βιβλίο.
Note that it's pronounced avTO.

"That is ...." construction, as in:
Εκείνο είναι παράθυρο.

"What is this?" construction:
Τι είναι αυτό;
Είναι βιβλίο.
Notice that Greek uses ";" rather than "?" as a question mark! The question could also be posed:
Αυτό, τι είναι;
And, of course, you could ask What is that? about a remote object:
Τι είναι εκείνο;
Εκείνο παράθυρο.

And — και
This is a box and this is a table.
Αυτό είναι βιβλίο και αυτό είναι τραπέζι.


Lesson 002

Or — ή
Is this a key or a pencil?
Είναι κλειδί αυτό ή μολύβι;

Not — δεν
This is not a pencil, it is a key.
Δεν είναι μολύβι, είναι κλειδί.
Note that it's pronounced then with a voiced th like the English word then.

Isn't it?
This is a basket, isn't it?
Αυτό είναι καλάθι, δεν είναι;

Now, ...
Now, dear listeners, ...
Τώρα, αγαπητοί ακροατές, ...
This was used by the professor but not explained. It has been the same thing with please, ραρακαλώ, thank you, ευχαριστώ, and hello or good-bye, γεια σας.


Lesson 003

Here and there: εδώ και εκεί
Compare there εκεί to that εκείνο, there must be a connection...

Where? πού

You (singular, familiar): εσύ. All the personal pronouns in the nominative case are:

Weak forms
singular plural
1st εγώ εμείς
2nd εσύ εσείς
3rd τός (masculine)
τη (feminine)
το (neuter)
τοι (masculine)
τες (feminine)
τα (neuter)
Strong forms
singular plural
1st εγώ εμείς
2nd εσύ εσείς
3rd αντός (masculine)
αντή (feminine)
αντό (neuter)
αντοί (masculine)
αντές (feminine)
αντά (neuter)

Pleasantries and politeness, some from later lessons

How are you? Τι γίνεσαι;
Fine, thank you. And you? Καλα, ευχαριστώ. Εσύ;
Good morning Καλημέρα
Good evening Καλησπέρα
Good night Καληνύχτα
Hello and Good-bye (informal) Γεια σας (singular)
Γεια σου (plural)
Hello (more formal) Χαίρετε
Please Ραρακαλώ
Thank you Ευχαριστώ
Excuse me με συγχωρείς (singular and informal)
με συγχωρείτε (plural or formal)

Lesson 004

The verb to be for second person singular (informal), see above under Lesson 001.

Useful words:
other — άλλο
thing — το πράγμα
Τι άλλο πράγμα; What other thing?

In, on, at
στον (maculine)
στην (feminine)
στο (neuter)
Το κλειδί είναι στο γραφείο. The key is in (or on, or at) the desk.

Plurals (of neuters):
Αυτό είναι βιβλίο. This is a book.
Αυτά είναι βιβλία. These are books.
Εκείνο είναι τραπέζι. That is a table.
Εκείνα είναι τραπέζια. Those are tables.

Neuters ending in -ο change that to -α.
το βιβλίο becomes τα βιβλία

Neuters ending in -ι add an -α.
το τραπέζι becomes τα τραπέζια.

Neuters ending in -α add the syllable -τα.
το πράγμα becomes τα πράγματα.


Lesson 005

Here is ... — Να ...
Πού είναι ραδιόφωνο; Να το, είναι στο γραυείο.
Where is the radio? Here it is, on the desk.
Πού είναι τα περιοδικά; Να τα.
Where are the magazines? Here they are.

Possession
μου — my
του — his
της — her
το δομάτιό μου είναι εκεί στο σπίτι μου.
My room is over there in my house.

Feminine nouns: αυτό and εκείνο become αυτή and εκείνη.
Αυτή είναι η καρέκλα μου.
Here is my chair. (literally Here is the-chair of-me.)