rough breathing, KOINE

Trevor & Julie Peterson 06peterson at cua.edu
Wed Mar 6 16:19:24 EST 2002


Michael wrote:

> But I can't really understand why people
> would ignore the accent marks and just stumble through the pronunciation.

But hopefully you can understand where the participants in the discussion to
which you responded were coming from. It wasn't just an issue of ignoring
the accents or breathing marks out of laziness. There were methodological
reasons. The one was advocating abandonment of the accent marks, because he
believed that they were not indicative of the real accent of the language.
The other does not pronounce breathing marks, because he believes that Greek
speakers at the time of the NT would not have pronounced them either. I
think the point is to have a well-defined system that allows you to
pronounce words consistently. I also happen to think it's important to
strive for a pronunciation system that was or is probably a real, living
stage of the language, since that way you know that it's a system that
seemed natural to someone at some point. But more generally, I tend to think
that a system is usually better than no system at all.

Trevor Peterson
CUA/Semitics




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