[MGSA-L] February 9: International Greek Language Day

June Samaras kalamosbooks at gmail.com
Fri Feb 9 16:00:01 PST 2018

February 9: International Greek Language Day
By Tasos Kokkinidis - Feb 9, 2018


After years of campaigning by academics, educators and Greeks of the
diaspora, Feb. 9 has officially been declared International Greek Language

Starting in 2018, the day is expected to spark off initiatives to help
spread Greek language and culture worldwide.

Greek has a long and well-documented history — the longest of any
Indo-European language — spanning 34 centuries.

It holds an important place in the history of the Western world and
Christianity; the canon of ancient Greek literature includes works such as
the epic poems of the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Greek is also the foundational language of Western science, especially
astronomy, mathematics, logic, and philosophy, such as the Platonic
dialogues and the works of Aristotle. The New Testament of the Christian
Bible was written in Koine Greek.

Together with the Latin texts and traditions of the Roman world, the study
of ancient Greek writings and society constitutes the discipline of

13 million speakers

Keeping that Roman link, it was the Greeks of Italy who were the first to
propose an international day for the Greek language. The Athens government
eventually adopted the proposal and the plenary session of the Greek
parliament unanimously accepted and institutionalized it.

The specific date coincides with the Commemoration Day of Greece’s national
poet, Dionysios Solomos, whose lengthy poetic composition To Freedom makes
up the lyrics of the Greek national anthem.

In the modern world, the Greek language has not been restricted by borders.
Countless Greek words enrich other languages, culminating in the
international medical terminology in which about 80 percent of the
scientific terms have a Greek root.

As the official language of two EU member states, Greece and Cyprus, it is
one of the 24 official languages of the European Union and by a rough
estimate, is currently spoken by nearly 13.2 million people in Greece,
Cyprus and the Greek diaspora around the world.

June Samaras
(For Books about Greece)
2020 Old Station Rd
Canada L5M 2V1
Tel : 905-542-1877 <(905)%20542-1877>
E-mail : kalamosbooks at gmail.com
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