Saturday, August 15, 2015

Greek Alphabet

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Greek Alphabet
Multiple Responses:
1.
The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the 8th century BC. It was derived from the earlier Phoenician alphabet, and was the first alphabetic script to have distinct letters for vowels as well as consonants. It is the ancestor of the Latin and Cyrillic scripts. Apart from its use in writing the Greek language, both in its ancient and its modern forms, the Greek alphabet today also serves as a source of technical symbols and labels in many domains of mathematics, science and other fields.


In its classical and modern forms, the alphabet has 24 letters, ordered from alpha to omega. Like Latin and Cyrillic, Greek originally had only a single form of each letter; it developed the letter case distinction between upper-case and lower-case forms in parallel with Latin during the modern era.


Sound values and conventional transcriptions for some of the letters differ between Ancient Greek and Modern Greek usage, because the pronunciation of Greek has changed a great deal between the 5th century BC and today. Modern and Ancient Greek use different diacritics. Polytonic orthography, which is used for Ancient Greek and sometimes for Modern Greek, has many diacritics, such as accent marks for pitch accent, the breathing marks for the presence and absence of the /h/ sound, and the iota subscript for the historical /i/ sound. In standard Modern Greek spelling, orthography has been simplified to the monotonic system, which uses only two diacritics: the acute accent and diaeresis.


2.
When you are working with geometry and trigonometry, you will see a lot of Greek letters. It will be helpful to know how the names of these letters are spelled and pronounced.
Name
Character
Pronunciation
alpha
α
AL-phuh
beta
β
BAY-tuh
gamma
γ
GAMM-muh
delta
δ
DELL-tuh
epsilon
ε
EPP-sih-lonn
zeta
ζ
ZAY-tuh
eta
η
AY-tuh
theta
θ
THAY-tuh
iota
ι
ee-OH-tuh
kappa
κ
CAPP-uh
lambda
λ
LAMM-duh
(What animal is that?
It's a "LAMB -- duh"!!)
mu
μ
myoo
nu
ν
noo
xi
ξ
ksee
omicron
ο
OH-mih-kronn
pi
π
piy (Like apple "pie".)
rho
ρ
roh (Like "row, row,
row your boat".)
(final) sigma
ς
SIGG-muh
sigma
σ
SIGG-muh
tau
τ
tow (like the first syllable of "towel")
upsilon
υ
OOPS-ih-lonn
phi
φ
fiy (Like "fee, fie,
fo, fum")
chi
χ
kiy
psi
ψ
psiy
omega
ω
oh-MAY-guh

The Greek letters you are most likely to see for angles are α (alpha), β (beta), γ (gamma), δ (delta), and θ (theta). And of course you'll be using π (pi) all the time. Make sure you know how to spell and pronounce at least these six Greek characters.

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