You Already Know More Than You Think!

Just like any other language, Greek has “adopted” foreign words and made them part of everyday language! For example, we go σόππινγκ at the σούπερ μάρκετ! Many of these foreign words have been brought in by teenagers that use them as slang but there are also hundreds of words that come from Greek sailors who imported them from far-away ports all over the world: French, Spanish, English etc.

Instead of trying to remember lots of new and difficult Greek verbs, we can start off by learning a few of those “sailor-verbs” I to build our vocabulary. How about:

ΠΑΡΚΑΡΩ

ΦΛΕΡΤΑΡΩ

ΣΟΚΑΡΩ

ΤΕΣΤΑΡΩ

If you can not read Greek letters, here are the same ones with Latin letters (the accent always goes on the A in ARO)

PARKARO

FLERTARO

SOKARO

TESTARO

Can you work out what they mean? They are all borrowed words from English! Just in case, this is what they mean: I park, I flirt, I shock and I test. If you speak English they are very easy to learn, which is why I like to start off with them.

The word for “I” or “self” is εγώ, egό (emphasis on the o) and we meet it in words and expressions such as “egocentric” or “he has such a big ego”. Greek has two “o’s”: ό-micron (lit. small o) which looks like this: Ο/ο, and o-mega (lit. big o) which looks like this: Ω/ω. As we are talking about ourselves we use, naturally (!), the big one when spelling the word for “I”. Thus, almost all Greek verbs used in the first person (I do, I have) end with Ω/ω (compare the verbs above).

For books about Greece and Greek Lessons, please visit our website: http://www.skiathosbooks.com

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