[B-Greek] Greek textbook question re Duff

George F Somsel gfsomsel at yahoo.com
Tue Oct 2 09:57:21 EDT 2007


I rather doubt that you are slow, but there are "different strokes for different folks."  I wouldn't want to be limited to a text which doesn't have the accents and breathings (though I do have some e-texts that are precisely this way).  This is not because I need the accents since most of the time I pay little or no attention to them.  It is like walking into the house and noting that something is different -- some piece of furniture has been moved.  It may not be earth-shattering, but it seems unfamiliar.  The accents become just part of the furniture.
 
george
gfsomsel
 
Therefore, O faithful Christian, search for truth, hear truth, 
learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth, 
defend the truth till death.
 
- Jan Hus
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----- Original Message ----
From: Chet Creider <creider at uwo.ca>
To: b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org
Sent: Tuesday, October 2, 2007 8:43:35 AM
Subject: Re: [B-Greek] Greek textbook question re Duff


I had some contact with the author in the later stages of his work on 
this book and it was apparently too late for him to put in accents.  
This renders the book IMO much less useful than it would otherwise be as 
any serious reader of Greek at any time or level really should have the 
accents available (for one thing, they are necessary to know where to 
place the accent in pronouncing a word).  The fact that they weren't 
used at the time the NT was written (the principal argument given by 
Duff on his website for the text is no argument at all -- paragraphs 
weren't broken up into sentences, sentences were not broken up into 
words, and only upper case was used, but I can't imagine anyone wanting 
to go back to that state of affairs. 

That said, I will try to give a different sort of answer to the original 
poster of the question by saying that I had to work through 3 
introductory textbooks, one of them twice before I was reasonably 
comfortable with reading NT Greek (and this after having studied earlier 
Greek for a couple of years).  I'm sure I'm unusually slow, but I don't 
regret the time and work spent.  One of the texts I used was Wenham 
(i.e. the predecessor to Duff), but I marked all the nonverbal accents 
(accents on verbs are regular and although it looks very odd not to 
write them it isn't necessary to know where to place the accent when 
pronouncing a verbal word) in by hand and made sure that I did the 
exercises writing the accents.  Despite this extra work, I liked the 
book and found its presentation clear.

Chet Creider

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