Athonite Grammar I

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GRAMMAR OF ATHONITE, THAT IS, THE GREEK DIALECT SPOKEN IN THE SERENE MONASTIC REPUBLIC OF THE HOLY MOUNTAIN

Introduction - Ειςαγώγ

  • Although Modern Greek is the official language of the Monastic Republic and is spoken in the Greek monasteries, the citizens have their own dialect.
  • It developed from their contact with their Turkish conquerors and shows some Turkish influence in grammar and vocabulary.
  • Many internal differences have been regularized, such as simplification of the verb tenses.
  • A spelling reform, devised by a monk, has standardized the orthography so that it is more consistent with the pronunciation, e.g., αι > ε; οι > ι; η > ι.
  • Double letters have been eliminated.
  • σ has been replaced by ς.
  • Some initial consonant clusters have been simplified, e.g., κτ > τ; πτ > τ.
  • The accent regularly occurs on the penultimate syllable.
  • An acute accent is placed over an accented vowel when the accent is not on the penultima.
  • Words of Turkish origin are indicated in blue.


Pronunciation Table - Πίνακα τις Προφορά

Greek α αυ β γ γγ γκ γξ γχ δ ε ει ευ ζ ι θ κ λ μ μπ ν ντ ξ ο ου π ρ ς τ τζ υ φ χ ψ ω
Latin a af v g ng nk ngks nch dh e i ef z i th k l m b n d ks ǫ u p r s t z u f ch ps o
IPA /a/1 /af/2 /v/ /ɣ/3 /ŋ/ /g/ /ŋks/ /ŋç/ /ð/ /ε/ /i/ /εf/4 /z/ /i/5 /θ/ /k/ /l/ /m/ /b/ /n/ /d/ /ks/ /ɔ/ /u/ /p/ /r/ /s/6 /t/ /ʣ/ /y/ /f/ /ç/ /ps/ /o/


Notes - Σιμείωςι

  • 1 when accented, otherwise /ʌ/.
  • 2 before voiceless consonants, /av/ before voiced consonants.
  • 3 /ɣ/ before α, ο, ου, and ω; /j/ before ε, ι, υ.
  • 4 before voiceless consonants, /εv/ before voiced consonants.
  • 5 /j/ between vowels.
  • 6 /z/ before voiced consonants.


Grammar - Γραματίκ

The Definite Article - Το ςυγκεκριμέν Αρθ

  • 001. The Modern Greek definite article has been reduced to one single form for each gender: ο for masucline nouns, ι for feminine nouns, and το for neuter nouns.

Uses of the definite article - Χριςι του Συγκεκριμέν Αρθ

  1. Before proper names, e.g., Ο Γιοργ εινε καλ πεδ; George is a good boy.
  2. Before the names of places, e.g., Ι αθιν εινε ι πρotεvυς απ' ι Elάδ; Athens is the capital of Greece.
  3. Before the names of streets, e.g., Mένo ς' ι οδό ςταδí; I live on Stadium Street.
  4. Before titles of names of professions followed by a person's name, e.g., Ο γατ Eυγενιδες κιρ εινε πolύ πloυς; Dr. Eugenides is very rich.
  5. Before nouns used in an abstract or general sense, e.g., I ιλικρινι εινε ι πιo μεγάλ αρεt; Sincerity is the greatest virtue.
  6. Before nouns designating parts of the body or personal articles of clothing, e.g., To μαλιά απ' ι Mαρíα εινε χανθ; Mary's hair is blond.
  7. Before nouns modified by a possessive adjective which follows the noun, e.g., Ο αδελφ μου ο Γιαν εχι καλ δoυλί; My brother John has a good job.
  8. Before nouns modified by a demonstrative which always follows the noun e.g., I κοπέλ αυτ εινε πολύ oρέ; This girl is very beautiful.
  9. Before a noun indicating a class of objects or persons, e.g., Ο πoλίςι εινε αυςτίρ; Policemen are strict.

The Indefinite Article - Το Αοριςτ Αρθ

  • 002. There is no indefinite article in Athonite.

Nouns - Ουςιαςτικί

  • 003. Nouns are divided into three classes known as masculine, feminine, and neuter.
  • 004. Masculine nouns are those preceded in the nominative case by the definite article ο, e.g., ο ανθρoπ, the man; ο πατέρ, the father.
  • 005. Feminine nouns are those preceded in the nominative case by the definite article ι, e.g., ι πορτ, the door; ι γυνέκ, the woman.
  • 006. Neuter nouns are those preceded in the nominative case by the definite article το, e.g., το γραfί, the office; το πεδ, the child.

Noun Formation - Σχηματίς απ' Ουςιαςτικα

  • 007. Athonite nouns are formed by dropping the nominative singular ending of the Greek noun.
  • 008. The accent remains on the same stem if it is in the root, e.g., πατέρας > πατέρ.
  • 009. If the accent is on the ending, it reverts to the final syllable, e.g., αδελφός > αδέλφ.
  • 010. Some neuter nouns end in -ίον. These nouns drop the -ον to end in , e.g., χαρτίον > χαρτί.
  • 011. Nouns of the third declension, characterized by an increase in the genitive, use the genitive stem for the nominative, e.g., ελπίς, ελπίδος > ελπίδ.
  • 012. Nouns the root of which end in -Cr, -Cn, and -Cl drop the -Cx, e.g., δένδρος gives the Athonite δενδ. These nouns then restore the dropped consonant in the plural, δενδρι.

The Plural - Ο Πλιθυντικό

  • 013. Nouns form their plurals by adding a suffix to the word.
  • 014. Masculine nouns of whatever type in Greek, add .
ο αδέλφ, the brother, ο αδελφί, the brothers
ο ανθρoπ, the man, ο άνθρoπι, the men
ο εργάτ, the worker, ο εργάτι, the workers
  • 015. Feminine nouns of whatever type in Greek, add .
ι αδέλφ, the sister, ι αδελφί, the sisters
ι μερ, the day, ι μερι , the days
ι vαρκ, the boat, ι vαρκι, the boats
  • 016. Neuter nouns which end in -μα add -τα.
το χρομα, the color; το χρόματα, the colors
  • 017. Other neuter nouns add .
το τςιγάρ, the cigarette, το τςιγαρα, the cigarettes
το αμαχι, the cart, το αμάχια, the carts
  • 018. There are a few irregular plurals:
το φος, the light; το φοτα, the colors

The Function of Cases - Η Λειτουργί απο Τωςι

  • 019. Possession and other types of genitive use are indicated with the preposition από, contracted to απ' before a vowel.
ο θι, the uncle > απ' ο θι, of the uncle
ι θι, the aunt > απ' ι θι, of the aunt
το ποδ, the foot > από το ποδ, of the foot
ο θίι, the uncles > απ' ο θίι, of the uncles
ι θίι, the aunts > απ' ι θίι, of the aunts
το ποδa, the feet > από το ποδa, of the feet
  • 020. The indirect object is expressed with the preposition ςε, contracted to ς' before a vowel and prefixed to pronouns.
ο Γιαν δίνει ς' ο Μιχαήλ δωρ John gives Michael a cigarette.
έδοςα ς' ο γιοργ βιβλί, I gave George a book.
  • 021. When the objects are pronouns the indirect is placed in front of the direct and in front of the verb.
ςτου έδοςα βιβλί , I gave him a book.
Θα ςε ςου ςτειλ το πράματα, I shall send you the things.
  • 022. When the verb is in the imperative the pronouns are placed after it.
Δοςε ςτις μπαζ ςου, Give her some water.
Δοςε ςτις το, Give it to her.

Adjectives - Επίθετα

  • 023. Adjectives in Athonite are indeclinable. They are derived from Modern Greek adjectives in the same way as the nouns.
  • 024. Adjectives precede the noun they modify.
    • ο καλ άνθροπ, the good man
    • ι καλ γυνέκ, the good woman
    • το καλ πεδ, the good child
    • ο μεγάλ κιπ, the large garden
    • ι μεγάλ πορτ, the large door
    • το μεγάλ δoμάτi, the large room
  • 025. The adjectives αυτ, this, and εκίν, that, follow the noun they modify. The noun requires the definite article.
    • ο άνθρoπ αυτ, this man
    • ο κιπ αυτ, this garden
    • ι γυνέκ αυτ, this woman
    • το πεδ αυτ, this child
    • το αμαχi αυτ, this cart
    • ο εργάτ εκίν, that worker
    • ι νυχτ εκίν, that night
    • το δωματι εκίν, that room

Comparison of Adjectives - ςυγκρις απ' Επίθετα

  • 026. There is only one degree of comparison of the Athonite adjective. It is formed by placing the word πιο, more, in front them. They are then followed by από.
ο αδέλφ μου εινε πιο δυνάτ απ' ο αδέλφ ςου, my brother is stronger than your brother.
ο Γιαν πιο φτοχ εινε απ' ο Kοςtας, John is poorer than Costas.
το ςπιτ αυτ εινε πιο καλ απ' εκίν, This house is better than that one.
το αφτοκεινετ αυτ εινε πολύ πιο χιρότ απ' ο άλον, This automobile is much worse than the other.
ο Aνδρέ εινε ο πιο καλ mαθίτ ς' ι ταχ του, Andrew is the best pupil in his class.
ο πατέρ τις εινε ο πιο πλoυsι ς' ι αθίν, Her father is the richest man in Athens.
I Eλέν ίτε ι πιο oρέ γυνέκ ς' ι Elάδ, Helen was the most beautiful woman in Greece.
  • 027. The comparative of κακ, bad, is χειρότ, worse.
  • 028. The comparison of inferiority is eχpressed with λιγóτ, less, plus από.
ο Nικ εινε λιγóτ εξυπ απ' ο Kοςtας, Nick is not as smart as Costas.
  • 029. The comparison of equality is eχpressed by τoς...oς plus the definite article.
ο πατέρ μου εινε τoς πλouςι, oς ο πατέρ ςου, My father is as rich as your father.

The Possessive Adjectives - Το Τιτίκ Επίθετα

Singular Plural
μου, my μας, our
ςου, your ςας, your
του, his
τις, her
του, its
τους, their
  • 030. These adjectives are placed after the nouns they modify. The nouns are preceded by the definite article.
το ςπιτ, the house; το ςπιτ μου, my house
ο φιλ, the friend; ο φιλ μου, my friend
το χιρ μου, my hand
ο πατέρ ςου, your father
ι μιτέρ τις, her mother
ο κίπ μας, our garden
ο κίπι μας, our gardens
το lεπτ ςας, your money
  • 031. When the nouns are preceded by an adjective, the possessive adjective is put after the noun.
το αμάχι, the cart; το κενύρ αμάχι, the new cart; το κενύρ αμάχι μου, my new cart
ο καλ φιλ μας, our good friend
The Active Participle - Ι Ενέργ Μετοχί
  • 032. A participle is an adjective derived from a verb. It modifies a noun, but may take an object like a verb.
  • 033. The active participle indicates that the subject of the sentence is doing something.
  • 034. It is formed by adding the ending to the present stem.
Class I
βλεπω > βλεποντ, seeing
Class II
αγαπώ > αγαπώντ, loving
The Passive Participle - Ι Παθιτίκ Μετοχί
  • The passive participle is formed by adding the ending -μεν to the present stem.
  • Class I
    • βλεπo > βλέπομεν, seen
  • Class II
    • αγαπώ > αγαπαμέν, loved


Pronouns - Αντωνυμι

The Personal Pronouns - Η Προςωπίκ Αντωνυμι

  • 035. The personal pronouns are declined.
First singular First plural Second singular Second plural Third singular Third plural
Nominative γo, I (ε)μείς, we (ε)ςύ, you (ε)ςείς, you αυτό, he
αυτί, she
αυτό, it,
αυτί, they
αυτές, they
αυτά, they
Genitive μου, my μας, our ςου, your ςας, your του, his
τις, her
του, its
τους, their
Accusative με(να), me (ε)μαs, us ςε(να), you (ε)ςας, you τον, him
τιν, her
το, it
τους, them
τις, them
τα, them
  • 036. The object pronouns are placed before the verb except in the imperative when they follow the verb.
ςε μου το έφερε, He brought it to me.
δος ςε μου το βιβλί, Give me the book.

The Possessive Pronouns - Η Τιτίκ Αντωνυμι

  • 037. The personal possessive pronouns are formed using the personal pronoun in the genitive and the definite article.
το βιβλί αυτ εινε το μου, το βιβλί εκίν εινε το ςου, This book is mine, that book is yours.

The Genitive Pronouns with Prepositions - Η Γενίκ Αντωνυμι με Προθεςι

  • 038. The genitive of the pronoun may be used after certain prepositions, adverbs or adjectives.
μαζί μου, with me; μονος του, alone (by himself); κοντά του, near him.
  • 039. The genitive is also used after words denoting greeting.
καλιμέρ ςας, good morning to you; καλινύκτ ςας, good night; για ςου, good-bye (to one person).

The Relative Pronoun - Η ςχετίκ Αντωνύμ

  • 040. There is only one relative pronoun. Πou stands for all the relative pronouns: who, whom, which, and that.
I κοπέλ, πou γελά, εινε ι αδέλφ μου, The girl who is laughing is my sister.

The Interrogative Pronoun - Η Ερωτιματίκ Αντωνύμ

  • 041. The Interrogative Pronoun: πι, who, whose, whom
Singular Plural
Nominative πι πιές
Genitive πιoύ πιóν
Accusative πιόν πιoύς
Π' εινε αυτό; Who is this?
Πιoύ εινε το καπέλ εκίν; Whose hat is that?
Πιoύs ζιτάτε; For whom are you looking?
  • 042. What? = τι, ti.
Ti κάνετε; What are you doing?
T' εινε αυτό; What is this?


Athonite Grammar II