Guide

Beginner’s Guide to Koine Greek





John of Damascus lived under the Arab rule and yet still produced all his work in Koine Greek. He is my favorite saint and his theological books are amazing on so many levels. 



When I started out on my journey to learn Koine Greek, I struggled to find resources online. I also hate grammar, but I wanted to be able to pray in Koine Greek, the same way my ancestors did before the arabization of our identity.

I still consider myself a beginner and I’m still learning each day, so I’ll keep on updating this post whenever I find useful online resources that you can also use.

First of all, since you are learning the language on your own, and you probably hate grammar too, start by learning the alphabets. A good way to start is through this Greek/English interlinear Bible:

https://www.scripture4all.org/OnlineInterlinear/Greek_Index.htm

Then, you can move to this brilliant Greek/Arabic brief one by Kamal Abou Mikhael:

http://greekarabicnt.org/

You will probably make mistakes in pronunciation, and that’s okay, you learn better by making a lot of mistakes. In order to find your mistakes, start listening to Byzantine hymns in Greek with YouTube  videos that contain the subtitles, such as the below videos:

1)  https://youtu.be/0bDw5F32c_w

2) https://youtu.be/7QmaLDywQ4I

3) https://youtu.be/fd7kcQaDbKg


As you move along, you may want to start with orthodox prayers and you can find their English equivalent online. The Orthodox Church in Australia has some really good PDF resources on which I relied heavily as a start (I still do), here are some of them:

http://www.greekorthodox.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/GOAA-BoP-Combined.pdf

In addition to the above, you will need Koine Greek translators (google translator has only modern Greek). The below links can be useful:

1) https://lexicon.katabiblon.com/

2) https://enacademic.com/

I guarantee you that it will be an enjoyable journey and you’ll definitely love the language and you’ll unconsciously immense yourself more in Orthodoxy which will have a very positive impact on your daily life.

John of Damascus in my room for daily inspiration

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