Tarzan Shakespeare or the pain caused by my Greek deficit

5 Jul

I can sympathize. I know a little Sanskrit, but recently I have been trying to pick up some modern Hindi.

Loving Language

How do I connect when I'm bad at Greek? How do I connect when I’m bad at Greek?

“Me want now go yon church?”

“What name belongeth yon market?”

This is how I imagine what my Modern Greek sounds like: a combination of Shakespeare and Tarzan. You see, I’m bad at Greek. (It’s not all Greek to me, but a good portion of it is.) I can read some Biblical Greek (a simpler version of Ancient Greek a la Homer), but I know only a little Modern Greek—and it’s words with very little grammar. A foreigner from the 10th century.

Last weekend I got back from a trip to Greece. I went with my youngest daughter and my mother, so I was speaking mostly English. As the “language guy” of the family, and so the only one with a desire to speak Greek, all Greek-speaking responsibilities of the trip belonged to me. While those in tourism spoke pretty good…

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