I formed the perfect

And all I got was this lousy reduplication.

Unit 15 takes us on to the perfect which is formed by CV- reduplication. Some perfects in Greek still have o-grade vocalism in perfect forms, but like other parts of irregular verbs, these are relics. In the Germanic languages, the o-grade was found in the preterite sg, but the zero grade in the plural. I believe the same pattern was found in Vedic Sanskrit.

Unit 16 also has verbs which take participles as their complements. I must admit that I’ve never liked λανθάνω escape the notice of (+acc) because it was hard to produce a translation that didn’t sound inept. About the only solution is to turn such sentence into something that sounds idiomatic in English, but may not be a close translation of the Greek. Now that I’m looking at the examples again, the Greek could almost be reversed with the dO becoming the subject, thus resulting in X did not notice Y.

The reading includes a short passage about Archimedes realising how he can tell whether Hiero of Syracuse’s jeweller has been deceiving him. The extra reading is from Prometheus Bound by Aeschylus. Kratos and Bia have delivered Prometheus to Hephaistos, who is reluctant to fetter a fellow immortal. I can’t help but notice that Prometheus’ regenerative powers have been forgotten when Hephaistos says

σταθευτὸς δ’ ἡλίου φοίβῃ φλογὶ
χροιᾶς ἀμείψεις ἄνθος
Scorched by the radiant flame of the sun, you will lose the appearance of your skin

But wouldn’t Prometheus’ skin heal overnight just as his liver regenerates after it’s eaten by an eagle every day? What’s that? A nice cup of hemlock for me for noticing a 2500 year old flaw? You must have me mistaken for someone else.


The natives are restless again.

Having seen a story among the RSS headlines from the Beeb this morning about another disturbance in an autonomous Τιβέταν area, I was unsurprised to see quite a few policemen out and about. The school wants to lock the side door where our office is, but the Canadian-American programme objected because it was stopping parents from getting easy access to them. So instead the door that’s just next to our office is padlocked from the inside which makes it a bloody nuisance to get through because the security guard has to come and let people in. The lock isn’t actually locked, but it is in the bracket.

The reasoning is, it seems, that οἱ Τιβέτανοι might turn up and demand a reduction in class sizes, school hours and the amount of testing, as well as com­pre­hensive subject reforms. The devils!

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