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Greek Lesson 1: John 1:1

This is the preposition but with a capital epsilon. means "in".

The apostrophe () over the vowel is the smooth breathing mark.
We know that every preposition must have an OP. In this case, it is the very
next word.

is the OP of and is translated "beginning". When you translate this

word, you will have to supply the article to make it sound right in English.
The mark under the eta is called a iota subscript.
The squiggly line over the eta is a circumflex.

This is a verb. It is third singular. Remember that in Greek, the subject is

embedded in the verb (principle 3).
o A first person verb has "I" or "we" for its subject.
o A second person verb has "you" for its subject.
o A third person verb has any other subject; e.g. he runs, Jeb runs, Peter
preached, etc.
Because of this, the subject isn't always present. It is implied. This verb is
third person, so we will use "he", "she", or "it".
This verb is translated into the English past tense. In Greek, its tense is
the imperfect tense.
This is a linking verb, not an action verb.
The lexical form is .

This is the article "the". The mark above it is the rough breathing mark. It is
nominative singular.

This is the subject of the verb . Just as in English, we always expect the
subject to be nominative case. We know is nominative in two ways:
o First, the article is nominative and the article must agree with its noun
(see principle 7).
o Second, nouns always have an ending specific to their case. This is
called a case ending. The sigma marks this noun as nominative
singular masculine.
You can see from this that word order in Greek is not as important as it is in
English. The period after this word means this is the end of the sentence.

Translation so far...


[the] beginning,

was the


is a FANBOYS conjunction and is almost always translated "and".

The alpha and iota of make up a dipthong.

See above for ...

is the preposition "with". Every preposition must have an OP. Here, the
OP is .

is the same as above (see article). In this case, however, you will not
put "the" in your translation. The article functions differently in Greek than it
does in English so we often leave it untranslated.
The article is spelled differently here because it must always be the
same case as the noun it modifies (remember principle 7). Since it is
modifying , it must agree with in gender, number, and case. is

accusative, singular, masculine so must be accusative, singular,


This is the same word as only here it is accusative case, not nominative.
It agrees with its article.

Translation so far...


[the] beginning, was the Word



the Word


The words in this line are all familiar to you. But should this line be translated, "and God
was the Word" or "and the Word was God"? Which of these nouns is the subject and which
is the PN? The case of each of these nouns doesn't help since both the subject and PN will
be nominative case. When two nouns, both in the nominative case, occur with some form
of (in this case ) the subject is the articular noun. Hence, is the subject
and is the PN.

Translation so far...

In [the] beginning, was the Word, and
the Word was God.

the Word

was with



John 1:2

The words in this line are all familiar except the first. is the demonstrative
pronoun "this". Since there is no noun for it to modify, you have to supply one
based on the context.
Here the antecedent of is clearly the , so we can translate "This
One..." is also the subject of .

Translation so far...

This [One] was in

[the] beginning