Notes On Koine Greek: Part 5

1. Morphemes: So far, we’ve looked at 4 specific morphemes in the Greek language, the: lexical morpheme, neutral morpheme, person-number suffix morpheme and the future time morpheme. 2. Negation: In Greek, the term “ou” indicates negation. The word “ou” only contains one morpheme: the lexical morpheme. However, this one word can affect the meaning of an entire sentence and especially the word that comes directly after it. So, for example, in the following phrase, there are 5 morphemes:

ou lu|s|o|men .
Lexical Morpheme Future Time Morpheme Neutral Morpheme Person-Number Suffix Morpheme

3. Amalgamation: The term “amalgamation” literally means the joining or consolidating of two or more things. In Greek, sometimes when two specific letters are placed next to one another, amalgamation occurs and they are joined and become one. By way of a bad, made up English example, we might think of the word “taksi”. Notice the highlighted “k” and “s”. In English, when the “k” and “s” are placed next to one another, they phonetically produce the sound “x”. So, we would spell the word “taxi”. In Greek, a similar sort of thing happens. For example, when the Greek letters “p” (p) and “s” (s) are placed next to one another, they join and form the letter “y” (ps). Thus, instead of writing two letters, we now only have to write one. When learning Koine Greek, it is important to remember which letters amalgamate. It may be helpful to remember that all of them work in conjunction with the letter “s”. You can see these 9 instances below: y p +s = AMALGAMATION Note: 1 mnemonic device to help y b +s = remember this table may be in TABLE y f +s = noticing that in all 3 sets, the 1st and x k+s = 3rd letters are similar (e.g. P & Ph / K x & Ch / T & Th) g +s = x c+s = NOTE: You may find it s t +s = Note that in these 3 the helpful to remember this table in 3 groups, according letter is actually “dropping s d +s = to the final amalgamated out” before the sigma. s q+s = letter. 4. Example: The term with 2 morphemes, blep | w (blepw) in the Future Active Indicative becomes 3 morphemes: blep | s | w . In amalgamation, its final rendering in terms of morphemes is still 3 but it becomes ble | y | w .

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