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The most of you already know more than the half of the Greek alphabet even if you haven’t realized it yet.
Do these letters look familiar to you:
A, B, E, H, I, K, M, N, O, P, T, Y, X, Z
and for those who have studied mathematics :
λ, μ, π, ρ, σ, ν, φ, θ, δ, ω.
Some of them have different pronunciation but the rest sound more or less similar to the English letters.
Greek alphabet has 24 letters. I will try to give you the correct Greek sound of each letter. Notice that this is not the correct spelling but the correct sound.
|Capital||Lower-case||Sound||English Name||Greek name|
*same sound as the English “the”.
You may have noticed a sign above the letters in the Greek words like “ποτήρι” (poteeri = glass). This accent mark is called “tonos” and is helpful in indicating the stress in the word. The accent mark is used only on the lower case letters and only in vowels. In some cases the accentuation can change the whole meaning of the word even if it spells the same. For example: μονή(moni = monastery) and μόνη (moni = alone(female)).
A diphthong is a pair of letters with different sound than their written sequence. These are:
αι: sounds the same as “ε” ,
ει,οι: sound the same as “ι,η,υ”,
γκ, γγ: sound as “g” (like in government),
μπ: sounds as “b” ντ: sounds as “d”,
γχ: sounds as “kh” ,
ου: sounds like “oo” (like in moon),
ευ: sounds as “ef“ ,
αυ:sounds as “af”.
I will give you now a small and easy exercise to check your capabilities in reading:
Try to match the words without using a dictionary. The words have almost the same sound in both languages.