Greek courses

Jon Weatherly jweather at
Mon Jul 19 12:16:32 EDT 1999

The fact that there are so many first-year Greek textbooks and so few
people studying Greek indicates as well as anything that there are no
real pearls, only faux.

I suspect that the choice of a textbook is largely a matter of the
instructor's personality and the students' interests and abilities. I
have used *Learn to Read New Testament Greek* by D. A. Black for
several years with what I judge as good success -- this in a Bible
college and seminary setting in which students have a high interest in
the NT but a generally low interest in acquiring languages. The book is
clear, uncluttered and informed without being pendantic. But the
exercises in the first three-quarters are pretty monotonous (hundreds
of variations on "The holy apostles freed the slaves and led them into
the church"), and they don't resemble actual Koine Greek prose much at

I share Carl's enthusiasm for *Reading Greek*, but it's just too
ambitious for the crowd that I've got, few of whom have an interest in
reading anything outside of the NT. I have tried to plan courses for
the students who are there, not my ideal student.

Lots of people in my acquaintance use *Elements of NT Greek* by J. W.
Wenham, loved by many but hated by others who resent his omission of
accent marks. Zondervan has been very successful with Bill Mounce's
book, but it has the idiosyncracy of introducing all the inflections of
the verb before anything about substantives.

And I suspect that everyone on the list who teaches Greek has a
favorite to share as well.

Jon Weatherly, PhD
Cincinnati Bible College & Seminary

--- "Carl W. Conrad" <cwconrad at> wrote:
> At 3:08 PM +0100 7/19/99, Pete Phillips wrote:
> >I have been using McNair to teach a basic NT Greek
> course here at Cliff
> >but I am getting a little fed up with it.  It just
> doesn't seem to work -
> >perhaps because I don't teach it right.  But I am
> looking out for any
> >advice on Greek courses I could get hold for
> September and the new
> >academic year.  Do people still use Dobson or what?
>  The local University
> >use Athenaze a Classical course apparently.  Any
> advocates for this?
> >
> >I look forward to your pearls of wisdom.
> No pearls to be had here, Pete, but you probably
> ought to consider _Reading
> Greek_ by Joint Association of Classical Teachers,
> published by Cambridge
> UP. I've commented on it on list before and no doubt
> what I've said is in
> the archives. It's like ATHENAZE but somewhat more
> sophisticated, I
> think--and it does require effort on the part of
> both teacher and students
> (what doesn't); it's virtue is that by the end of
> the course students can
> go on into Homer, classical Attic prose, or (if they
> wish) into NT.
> Carl W. Conrad
> Department of Classics, Washington University
> Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC
> 28714/(828) 675-4243
> cwconrad at
> WWW:

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