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Getting started on ancient Greek
Getting started on ancient Greek

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4 Upper and lower case

Now practise your ability to read and write the capital letters.

Activity 4 Case practice

Timing: Allow about 15 minutes

Rewrite the Greek words using capital letters throughout. Note that when Greek words are written in capital letters, accents are not used and breathings are regularly omitted, too. You can use this worksheet if you wish: Upper and lower case [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .

  • γῆ (= earth)
  • δοῦλος (= slave)
  • ἔγραψα (= I wrote)
  • θαυμάζω (= I am amazed)
  • νίκη (= victory)
  • συμμάχος (= ally)


In capital letters the words should read as follows:

  • ΓΗ ()
  • ΔΟΥΛΟΣ (doulos)
  • ΕΓΡΑΨΑ (egrapsa)
  • ΘΑΥΜΑΖΩ (thaumazо̄)
  • ΝΙΚΗ (nikē)
  • ΣΥΜΜΑΧΟΣ (summachos)

Now, rewrite the following words using lower case Greek letters only.

  • ΑΛΛΑ (= but; apply a smooth breathing)
  • ΔΗΜΟΣ (= people)
  • ΕΙΡΗΝΗ (= peace; apply a smooth breathing)
  • ΛΕΓΩ (= I say, speak)
  • ΜΑΝΘΑΝΩ (= I learn)
  • ΣΤΡΑΤΟΠΕΔΟΝ (= a camp)


In lower case the words should read as follows:

  • ἀλλά
  • δῆμος
  • εἰρήνη
  • λέγω
  • μανθάνω
  • στρατόπεδον

Look again at the inscription from Priene you saw in Session 1. Rewrite the first line in lower case letters, preserving the initial capital of Alexander’s name.

Described image
Figure 3 First lines of the Priene block inscription


In lower case the first line would read:

  • βασιλεὺς Ἀλέξανδρος

If you used the worksheet for these activities, here is a completed version for comparison: Upper and lower case [completed].