The GreekStudy List

GreekStudy is an open mailing list dedicated to the study of ancient Greek, including the Homeric, Classical (Attic & Ionic), and Biblical (Koine) dialects.

Basic Information

The GreekStudy list is shared by multiple study groups.  There are typically several levels of beginner groups as well as advanced groups translating passages from, say, Xenophon or Plato.  A coordinator sets the group's agenda, then collects and collates assignments.  These collations, or side-by-side listings of each group member's answers or translations, are posted directly to the list for discussion.

Most questions are answered by the other list members, not necessarily those in your study group.  This mix of experience levels, where people switch between the roles of student and instructor, makes the list a particularly effective learning environment and contributes to a sense of community.

The weekly activities posting gives a current snapshot of the active study groups.

Use the GreekStudy subscription page to subscribe, unsubscribe, or manage your subscription options.  Subscription problems should be addressed to

You may join or drop a study group at any time, or you may lurk on the GreekStudy list indefinitely.  If you are interested in participating in a particular group, send email to that group's coordinator for more information.

Greek Fonts

Ancient Greek is written in a character set called polytonic (many accent) Greek. The monotonic (one accent) character set used by modern Greek is insufficient for ancient Greek.

The Unicode Consortium has defined a standard character set for polytonic Greek. If you are writing in ancient Greek these days, you will be using a Unicode font.

Fortunately all modern operating systems, word processors, and email readers released within the past five years (writing in mid-2016) support Unicode and have polytonic Greek characters. You'll need to set up a keyboard mapping for writing polytonic Greek, the details of which vary from system to system.

Betacode is a quick and dirty convention that uses ASCII characters to represent Greek characters and accents. Betacode is a relic of the pre-Unicode days, but can be useful at times for quick communications.

Back in the early 2000s when Unicode-supporting software was tough to come by, the GreekStudy listowner wrote his own Unicode text editor, Unicorn, with a built in polytonic Greek keyboard. It also has built-in parsing dictionaries for Latin and Greek. Modern alternatives now exist, but Unicorn is still available on the Mac, Windows, and Unix and is still maintained. You'll need to download Java to your system in order to run Unicorn.

Online Sources of Greek Texts and Textbooks

The Perseus site is a treasure trove of Greek and Latin texts, including a sophisticated online dictionary.

Textkit is a bulletin-board based approach to learning Latin and ancient Greek.  Textkit also has a supply of downloadable, public domain textbooks in PDF format.