New Testament Greek for Adults
This course is intended to be an introduction for adults to the Greek language, specifically Koine (New Testament Greek, also called Biblical Greek), grammar, and fluency. It is taught in the received pronunciation (modern pronunciation) which is a living language within the Greek Orthodox Church worldwide.
Adult New Testament Greek 1 provides adult students the opportunity to receive a clear, sophisticated, and imaginative introduction to the New Testament Greek language, also known as Koine Greek. Students will cover the fundamentals of New Testament Greek grammar, syntax, and vocabulary, and will read and translate excerpts of the New Testament, the Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom, Orthros, Vespers, as well as various hymns, prayers, and other texts. The aim of New Testament Greek 1 is to cultivate delight in the original language of the New Testament and the Divine Liturgy.
The course map highlights the key points of grammar to be covered each quarter, as well as Reading & Review units. By the end of the year students will have learned the Greek writing system, omega verbs in various forms, the three declensions, and the five cases. They will be familiar with the beginnings of syntax, learning to identify tense, person, number, & mood of verbs, and the case, number, and gender of nouns. They will also be introduced to adjectives, adverbs, pronouns, and prepositions, as well as an increasing number of case functions.
Students will be following the sequence of study contained in Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar. The primary goal for the student will be to acquire the foundations of Greek grammar, syntax and vocabulary and put these into practice through translation and comprehension exercises. Students will also begin to read and translate selections of the New Testament, the Divine Liturgy, Orthros, and Vespers in the original Greek. The greater goal is that students develop an appreciation of the beauty and power of language. This appreciation will inform their other studies and their lives in the world.
Some student work will be completed in the textbook. However, a large portion of the class will involve regular classroom participation, taking notes on grammar and vocabulary, and reading adaptations based on the readings in the Basics of Biblical Greek Workbook. Students will receive homework derived from exercises in the textbook and supplementary exercises designed by the department. Students will also be encouraged to use some online tools.
We plan to cover the first 12 chapters of the textbook with the intention that students will be able to transition smoothly to New Testament Greek 2 next year. The number of chapters may vary depending on the needs of the class.
During class time, students will review answers, pose questions, and explain and justify their answers and solutions. They will be required to take notes documenting the new content covered each class. Each week the teacher will lead discussions informed by issues and problems raised by students, as well as issues introduced by the teacher.
Saint Raphael’s School teaches what is often called “Koine Greek.” It is the dialect of Greek which was spoken throughout the Eastern Mediterranean following the conquests of Alexander the Great in the late 4th century BC, and persisted throughout the Roman and Byzantine periods and eventually evolved into the Modern Greek language which is currently spoken in Greece today. Koine Greek is the dialect of Greek with which the New Testament was written (which is why is Koine Greek is often called “New Testament Greek”).
Along with the New Testament, the various services of The Eastern Church, hymns, prayers, and saints lives were also composed in Koine Greek. At Saint Raphael’s School, Koine Greek is taught using the “Modern” or “Received” pronunciation. This pronunciation is identical to that used by speakers of the Modern Greek language today, and it is also the pronunciation currently used for the liturgies and services of the Orthodox Church of Greece, and most of the Orthodox Churches under the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarch, including The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (GOARCH).
REQUIRED COURSE TEXTS:
- Greek English Dictionary
- Oxford Greek English Dictionary or Divry Greek English Dictionary
- Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar, Fourth Edition by William D. Mounce
- ISBN-13: 9780310537434
- Basics of Biblical Greek Workbook, Fourth Edition by William D. Mounce
- ISBN-13: 9780310537472
- Service of Orthros: Selected Passages-An Interlinear Study Guide by Evie
- Zachariades-Holmberg and Demetrios E. Tonias
- ISBN-13: 9781885652331
- Service of Vespers-An Interlinear Study Guide by Evie Zachariades- Holmberg and Demetrios E Tonias
- ISBN-13: 9781885652324
- Biblical Greek Laminated Sheet (Zondervan Get an A! Study Guides) by William D. Mounce
- Hymns, Prayers, and Other Supplementals will be given by the instructor
- (families will be responsible to print hardcopies if needed).
*Required materials are not included in the purchase of the course.
Dr. Alexander Titus is a learner, educator, translator, and Church historian, specializing in the Byzantine and medieval Western periods. He holds a BA (2011) in Classics from the University of Oregon, an MA (2015) and ThM (2016) from St. Vladimir’s Theological Seminary, and a PhD (2022) in Church History from Princeton Theological Seminary, where he wrote his dissertation on St. Gregory Palamas. His English translation of Palamas’ Triads is also forthcoming from St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press (2023). Dr. Titus has come to believe strongly in the salvific value of classical education, not only for the soul of the individual Christian, but for the building up of the whole Church.
Dr. Titus currently lives in Springfield, Oregon, with his wife and two sons. His other interests include cooking, literature, visual arts (e.g., film, animation, games), volunteering in his local Orthodox community, and attempting, sometimes fruitlessly, to maintain a large rural property. He loves spending time with children and teaches part-time at his local Orthodox homeschooling resource center. email@example.com
Computer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with processor with a speed of 1 Ghz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with MacOS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do NOT recommending using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be much better solutions, as they enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.
High-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed Internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your Internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with an download/upload speed of 5/1Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.
WebCam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer.
WebCam Recommendations: Good (PC only) | Best (Mac and PC)
Headset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.
Headset Recommendations: USB | 3.5mm
Zoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use.
To download Zoom:
- Visit zoom.us/download.
- Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
- Open and run the installer on your computer.
- In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.
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