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Discovering Ancient Greek and Latin
Discovering Ancient Greek and Latin

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9.2 -ω (omega) verbs

The endings of Greek verbs, like those of nouns, follow patterns. The first person singular of most Greek verbs ends in the letter omega. These verbs are sometimes referred to as -ω or omega verbs. Here is the present tense of one common verb παύω (pauō), ‘I stop’ (strictly speaking, the present active indicative).

Table 21 The endings of the verb παύω (pauō, ‘I stop’) in the present indicative active
number and personGreekEnglish equivalent
singular
1παύω (pauō)I stop
2παύεις (paueis)you (singular) stop
3παύει (pauei)he / she / it stops
plural
1παύομεν (pauomen)we stop
2παύετε (pauete)you (plural) stop
3παύουσι(ν) (pauousi(n))they stop

The letter ‘nu’ (ν) at the end of the third person plural is used when the following word begins with a vowel.

Activity 44

Do English verbs change their endings?

a. 

Yes


b. 

No


The correct answer is a.

Answer

Yes, but nothing like to the same degree as Greek. With ‘he/she/it’ or a singular noun (e.g. ‘the dog’, ‘the cat’), English verbs in the present tense add ‘-s’ (‘she walks’ or ‘the cat skulks’ ).

Most English verbs also change their ending in the past tense (i.e. when describing events in the past) by adding ‘-ed’; thus ‘I walk’ becomes ‘I walked’. Some verbs undergo a more radical change, e.g. ‘I eat’ becomes ‘I ate’.

Practice

Activity 45

Using the verb table repeated below, match the following -omega verbs with their English equivalents.

Using the following two lists, match each numbered item with the correct letter.

  1. γράφουσι (graphousi)

  2. διώκει (diōkei)

  3. θύετε (thuete)

  4. τρέχομεν (trechomen)

  • a.you (plural) sacrifice

  • b.he chases

  • c.we run

  • d.they write

The correct answers are:
  • 1 = d
  • 2 = b
  • 3 = a
  • 4 = c
Table 22 The endings of the verb παύω (pauō, ‘I stop’) in the present active indicative
Number and personLatinEnglish equivalent
singular
1παύω (pauō)I stop
2παύεις (paueis)you (singular) stop
3παύει (pauei)he / she / it stops
plural
1παύομεν (pauomen)we stop
2παύετε (pauete)you (plural) stop
3παύουσι(ν) (pauousi(n))they stop