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Pontic Greek
Ποντιακά, Ρωμαίικα
Spoken in Greece, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Germany, The Netherlands
Region Southeastern Europe
Total speakers 324,535
Language family Indo-European
Writing system Greek alphabet, Latin alphabet
Language codes
ISO 639-1 None
ISO 639-2 ine
ISO 639-3 pnt
History of the
Greek language

(see also: Greek alphabet)
Proto-Greek
Mycenaean (c. 1600–1100 BC)
Ancient Greek (c. 800–330 BC)
Dialects:
Aeolic, Arcadocypriot, Attic-Ionic,
Doric, Locrian, Pamphylian;
Homeric Greek.
Possibly Macedonian.

Koine Greek (c. 330 BC–330)*
Medieval Greek (330–1453)
Modern Greek (from 1453)
Dialects:
Cappadocian, Cheimarriotika, Cretan,
Cypriot,Demotic, Griko, Katharevousa,
Pontic, Tsakonian, Maniot, Yevanic


*Dates (beginning with Ancient Greek) from D.B. Wallace, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics: An Exegetical Syntax of the New Testament (Grand Rapids 1997), 12.

Pontic Greek is a form of the Greek language originally spoken in the Pontus area on the southern shores of the Black Sea, and today mainly in Greece. Its speakers are Pontian Greeks.

Pontic's linguistic lineage stems from Ionic Greek via Koine and Byzantine Greek and contains influences from Turkish and to a lesser extent, Persian and various Caucasian languages.

Contents

Dialects

Greek linguist Manolis Triantafyllides has divided Pontic into two groups:

Speakers of Chaldiot were the most numerous. In phonology, some varieties of Pontic are reported to demonstrate vowel harmony, a well-known feature of Turkish (Mirambel 1965).

Geographic distribution

Distribution of Greek dialects of the Byzantine Empire between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries.
      Koiné       Pontic Greek       Cappadocian Greek

Though Pontic was originally spoken on the southern shores of the Black Sea, substantial numbers migrated into the northern and eastern shores (into the Russian Empire of the 18th and 19th century); Pontic is still spoken by large numbers of people in Ukraine, Russia (around Stavropol'), and Georgia, and the language enjoyed some use as a literary medium in the 1930s, including a school grammar (Topkhara 1998 [1932]). After the massacres of the 1910s, the majority of speakers remaining in Asia Minor were subject to the Treaty of Lausanne population exchange, and were resettled in Greece (mainly northern Greece). The inhabitants of the Of valley, who had converted to Islam in the 17th century, remained in Turkey. They speak Pontic (or Rumca as they call it) to this day;[1] a 1996 book (entitled Pontos Kültürü) by Ömer Asan contains further details about the current Pontic-speaking community of Turkey. In Greece, Pontic is now used mainly emblematically rather than as a medium of communication.

  • Greece 200,000 speakers (2001)
mostly in Macedonia (East, Central and West)

Pontic is most closely related to Cappadocian Greek, and the Greek spoken in Mariupolis (and formerly in Crimea, Ukraine) (see Mariupolitan Greek).

Official status

Pontic has no official status. During the late 1910s, it was destined to become the official language of the proposed Republic of Pontus. Historically, it was the de facto language of the Greek minority in the USSR, despite the fact that in the Πανσυνδεσμιακή Σύσκεψη (Conference of all the Associations) of 1926, organized by the Greek-Russian intelligentsia, it was decided that Dimotiki should be the official language of the community.[2]

Culture

The language has a rich oral tradition and folklore and Pontic songs are particularly popular in Greece. There is also some limited production of modern literature in Pontic, including poetry collections (among the most renowned writers is Kostas Diamantidis), novels, and translated Asterix comic albums.

Pontic alphabets

Pontic in Greece is written in historical Greek orthography, with diacritics: σ̌ ζ̌ ξ̌ ψ̌ for /ʃ ʒ kʃ pʃ/, α̈ ο̈ for [æ ø] (phonological /ia io/). Pontic in Turkey is written in Latin script following Turkish conventions, and Pontic in Russia is written in Cyrillic. In early Soviet times, Pontic was written in the Greek script phonetically, as shown below, using digraphs instead of diacritics; [æ ø] were written out as ια, ιο. The Pontic Wikipedia uses Greek script: it has adopted εα, εο for these vowels, to avoid clashes with Modern Greek ια, ιο, and uses digraphs from the Soviet system instead of diacritics, but otherwise follows historical orthography.

Greek
alphabet
Turkish
alphabet
Russian
alphabet
IPA Example
Α α A a А а [a] ρομεικα, romeyika, ромейика
Β β V v В в [v] κατιβενο, kativeno, кативено
Γ γ Ğ ğ Г г [ɣ] [ʝ] γανεβο, ğanevo, ганево
Δ δ DH dh Д д [ð] δοντι, dhonti, донти
Ε ε E e Е е [e] εγαπεςα, eğapesa, егапеса
Ζ ζ Z z З з [z] ζαντος, zantos, зантос
ΖΖ ζζ J j Ж ж [ʒ] πυρζζυας, burjuvas, буржуас
Θ θ TH th С с, Ф ф, Т т [θ] θεκο, theko, теко
Ι ι İ i И и [i] τοςπιτοπον, tospitopon, тоспитопон
Κ κ K k К к [k] καλατζεμαν, kalaceman, калачеман
Λ λ L l Л л [l] λαλια, lalia, лалиа
Μ μ M m М м [m] μανα, mana, мана
Ν ν N n Н н [n] ολιγον, oliğоn, олигон
Ο ο O o О о [o] τεμετερον, temeteron, теметерон
Π π P p П п [p] εγαπεςα, eğapesa, егапеса
Ρ ρ R r Р р [ɾ] ρομεικα, romeyika, ромейка
Σ ς S s С с [s] καλατζεπςον, kalacepson, калачепсон
ΣΣ ςς Ş ş Ш ш [ʃ] ςςερι, şeri, шери
Τ τ T t Т т [t] νοςτιμεςα, nostimesa, ностимеса
ΤΖ τζ C c Ч ч [ʤ] καλατζεμαν, kalaceman, калачеман
ΤΣ τς Ç ç Ц ц [tʃ] μανιτςα, maniça, маница
Υ υ U u У у [u] νυς, nus, нус
Φ φ F f Ф ф [f] εμορφα, emorfa, эморфа
Χ χ H, KH (sert H) Х х [x] χαςον, hason, хасон

Archaisms

Grammar:

  • Preservation of the ancient pronunciation of 'η' as 'ε' (κέπιν = κήπιον, κλέφτες = κλέπτης, συνέλικος = συνήλικος, νύφε = νύ(μ)φη, έγκα = ἤνεγκον, έτον = ἦτον, έκουσα = ἤκουσα etc).
  • Preservation of the ancient pronunciation 'ω' as 'o' where Koine Greek received it as 'ου' (ζωμίν = ζουμί, καρβώνι, ρωθώνι etc).
  • Preservation of the ancient nominative suffix of neuter diminutive nouns in 'ιον' (παιδίον, χωρίον).
  • Preservation of the Ionic consonant pair 'σπ' instead of Koine 'σφ' (σποντύλιν, σπἰγγω, σπιντόνα).
  • Preservation of the termination of feminine compound adjectives in -ος (ή άλαλος, ή άνοστος, ή έμορφος).
  • The declination of male nouns from singular, nominative termination '-on' to genitive '-ος' (ο νέον -> τη νέονος, ο πάππον -> τη πάππονος, ο λύκον -> τη λύκονος, ο Τούρκον -> τη Τούρκονος etc).
  • The aorist ordering form in -ον (ανάμνον, μείνον, κόψον, πίσον, ράψον, σβήσον).
  • The middle voice verb termination in -ούμαι (ανακατούμαι, σκοτούμαι, στεφανούμαι).
  • The passive voice aorist termination in -θα (anc. -θην): εγαπέθα, εκοιμέθα, εστάθα etc.
  • The imperative form of passive aorist in -θετε (anc -θητι): εγαπέθα, εκοιμέθα, εστάθα.
  • The sporadic use of infinitives (εποθανείναι, μαθείναι, κόψ'ναι, ράψ'ναι, χαρίσ'ναι, αγαπέθειν, κοιμεθείν).
  • The ancient accenting of nouns in vocative form: άδελφε, Νίκολα, Μάρια.
  • The sporadic use of 'ας' in the place of 'να': δός με ας φάγω.
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Comparison with Ancient Greek

  • Example 1: Pontic en (is), Ancient Greek esti, Koine idiomatic form enesti, Biblical form eni, Modern Greek ine
  • Example 2: Pontic temeteron (ours), Ancient Greek to(n) hemeteron, Modern Greek to(n) * mas
  • Example 3: Pontic diminutive pedhin (little child), Ancient Greek paidion, Standard Greek pedhi
  • Example 4 (combining 2 and 3): Pontic temeteron to pedin (our little child), Ancient Greek/Koine to hemeteron paidion, Modern Greek to pedi mas

  • 1. Attachment of the /e/ sound to the ancient infinitive suffix –ειν (in Trapezountiac Pontic)
PONTIC ANCIENT
ipíne εἰπεῖν
pathíne παθεῖν
apothaníne ἀποθανεῖν
piíne πιεῖν
iδíne εἰδεῖν
fiíne φυγεῖν
evríne εὑρεῖν
kamíne καμεῖν
faíne φαγεῖν
mathíne μαθεῖν
erthéane ἐλθεῖν
meníne μένειν
  • 2. Similar infinitive suffix -ηναι
PONTIC ANCIENT
anevίne ἀναβῆναι
katevine καταβῆναι
embine ἐμβῆναι
evjine ἐκβῆναι
epiδeavine ἀποδιαβῆναι
kimethine κοιμηθῆναι
xtipethine κτυπηθῆναι
evrethine εὑρεθῆναι
vrasine βραχῆναι
raine ῥαγῆναι
PONTIC ANCIENT
κράξειν κράξαι
μεθύσειν μεθύσαι
  • 4. Attachment of the /e/ sound to the ancient aorist infinitive suffix –σειν

ράψεινε, κράξεινε, μεθύσεινε, καλέσεινε, λαλήσεινε, κτυπήσεινε, καθίσεινε

  • 5. Same aorist suffix –ka (–ka was also the regular perfect suffix)
PONTIC ANCIENT
eδoka ἔδωκα
enδoka ἐνέδωκα
epika ἐποίηκα
efika ἀφῆκα
ethika ἔθηκα
  • 6. Ancient Greek –ein (-εῖν) infinitive > Pontic Greek –eane (-έανε) innfinitive
PONTIC ANCIENT
erthéane ἐλθεῖν

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Mackridge 1987.
  2. ^ Αrticle by Vlassis Agtzidis

Bibliography

  • Georges Drettas, Aspects pontiques, ARP, 1997, ISBN 2-9510349-0-3. "... marks the beginning of a new era in Greek dialectology. Not only is it the first comprehensive grammar of Pontic not written in Greek, but it is also the first self-contained grammar of any Greek “dialect” written, in the words of Bloomfield, “in terms of its own structure”." (Janse)
  • Özhan Öztürk, Karadeniz: Ansiklopedik Sözlük. 2 Cilt. Heyamola Yayıncılık. İstanbul, 2005. ISBN 975-6121-00-9
  • Mackridge, P. 1987. Greek-Speaking Moslems of North-East Turkey: Prolegomena to Study of the Ophitic Sub-Dialect of Pontic. Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies 11: 115–137.
  • Τομπαΐδης, Δ.Ε. 1988. Η Ποντιακή Διάλεκτος. Αθήνα: Αρχείον Πόντου. (Tompaidis, D.E. 1988. The Pontic Dialect. Athens: Archeion Pontou.)
  • Τομπαΐδης, Δ.Ε. ϗ Συμεωνίδης, Χ.Π. 2002. Συμπλήρωμα στο Ιστορικόν Λεξικόν της Ποντικής Διαλέκτου του Α.Α. Παπαδόπουλου. Αθήνα: Αρχείον Πόντου. (Tompaidis, D.E. and Simeonidis, C.P. 2002. Additions to the Historical Lexicon of the Pontic Dialect of A.A. Papadopoulos. Athens: Archeion Pontou.)
  • Παπαδόπουλος, Α.Α. 1955. Ιστορική Γραμματική της Ποντικής Διαλέκτου. Αθήνα: Επιτροπή Ποντιακών Μελετών. (Papadopoulos, A.A. 1955. Historical Grammar of the Pontic Dialect. Athens: Committee for Pontian Studies.)
  • Παπαδόπουλος, Α.Α. 1958–61. Ιστορικόν Λεξικόν της Ποντικής Διαλέκτου. 2 τόμ. Αθήνα: Μυρτίδης. (Papadopoulos, A.A. 1958–61. Historical Lexicon of the Pontic Dialect. 2 volumes. Athens: Mirtidis.)
  • Οικονομίδης, Δ.Η. 1958. Γραμματική της Ελληνικής Διαλέκτου του Πόντου. Αθήνα: Ακαδημία Αθηνών. (Oikonomidis, D.I. 1958. Grammar of the Greek Dialect of Pontos. Athens: Athens Academy.)
  • Τοπχαράς, Κονσταντίνος. 1998 [1932]. Η Γραμματική της Ποντιακής: Ι Γραματικι τι Ρομεικυ τι Ποντεικυ τι Γλοςας. Θεσσαλονίκη: Αφοί Κυριακίδη. (Topcharas, K. 1998 [1932]. The Grammar of Pontic. Thessaloniki: Afoi Kiriakidi.)

External links

Pontic Greek edition of Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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