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The other night, I was dreaming about Greek (again). In my dream, I was working out some grammatical question I had, and when I solved it, I woke myself up; I was that excited. It is possible that I spend too much time on languages.
Hebrew is consistently getting (emotionally) better, even though this week was a bit rough. But this week we added (to our Qal and Niphal) the Piel, Pual and Hithpael paradigms. The nice thing about our program is that we only had to memorize the Qal, then we learned how the verbs work and how they’re created. We learn four words per paradigm (the Perfect 3MS, the Infintive Construct, the Infinitive Absolute and the MS Participal) and then we can create the entire paradigm. No joke. Way less memorization than pretty much every other program, plus we understand how verbs work exponentially better.
But I will say that it still felt a little overwhelming adding three new paradigms this week. What’s cool is that we’re already translating from Scripture, have been since the beginning, using a graded reader. By now, very little of it is adjusted. And this is just the first semester.
And finally, I have officially switched to the MDiv TS. Yikes.
There is something delicious about translating the New Testament from Greek into English. I love the sense of accomplishment when I’ve finished a chapter. I also love being able to understand why translators chose certain words/phrases, or to begin to question why they did. It’s almost a cathartic experience for me. I’m afraid that most of my classmates, from what I hear, would not agree. (I even almost didn’t go to the hospital on Friday because I kept telling the EMT’s that I had to get my Greek done and didn’t have time for a visit to the hospital. Ha. In the midst of being in shock, I was worried about a lot of strange things…)
I love working through a problem spot in the text (problem to me because I am only a first year Greek student) and finally finding the word. I enjoy the feeling of figuring out what the grammar is saying, piecing together phrases even though they are not set up at all like English.
And it is very likely that when I am done with academics (be it after a Masters of after PhD work), I will likely never “need” Greek (or any other Biblical/Theological language) again. It’s kind of sad, isn’t it?