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Getting started on ancient Greek
Getting started on ancient Greek

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1 Forming the letters

To get the most out of your practice, you should attempt to form the letters by hand, for instance with pencil and paper. The activities contain links to printable worksheets with spaces you can fill in, although you can use a blank sheet of paper if you wish.

If you prefer to use a keyboard, there are websites available. One site enabling you to enter Greek using a mouse or keystrokes is Lexilogos [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] (if you take a look, make sure to open the link in a new tab/window so you can easily return to the course).

If this is your first experience of writing Greek, it is best to take a practical approach. Aim for simplicity and write the letters so they can be recognised and understood. As with English, if you look closely at different styles of handwriting, you will see an enormous variety of shapes and styles. In print too, close examination reveals subtle twirls, shifts of angle and changes of thickness that are visually attractive but do not need to be reproduced in handwriting.

You can use the illustration below as a guide to writing the lower-case letters, although there are no hard-and-fast rules for exactly how to go about this.

Described image
Figure 2 Guide to lower case letters

Activity 1 Letter practice

Timing: Allow about 15 minutes

Write the letters of the Greek alphabet, lower case and upper. You can use this worksheet if you wish: Forming the letters.


If you used the worksheet, here is a completed version for comparison: Forming the letters [completed].