Category Archives: Learn Greek

Lesson 9: Greek Adjectives, Greek verbs and Possessives


In this lesson, we will learn:

    • Greek adjectives in -ής, -ής, -ές: Declension
    • Adjectives: Degrees of Comparison
    • Possessive Pronouns & Adjectives
    • Greek verbs, Part 5: Perfect tenses



Singular Plural
Nom. o διεθν-ής (international) οι διεθν-είς
Gen. του διεθν-ή των διεθν-ών
Acc. το διεθν-ή τους διεθν-είς
Voc. διεθν-ή διεθν-είς



Singular Plural
Nom. η διεθν-ής οι διεθν-είς
Gen. της διεθν-ούς των διεθν-ών
Acc. τη διεθν-ή τις διεθν-είς
Voc. διεθν-ή διεθν-είς



Singular Plural
Nom. το διεθν-ές τα διεθν-ή
Gen. του διεθν-ούς των διεθν-ών
Acc. το διεθν-ές τα διεθν-ή
Voc. διεθν-ές διεθν-ή

More adjectives in -ης, -ης, -ες:

ο επιμελής, η επιμελής, το επιμελές –> studious, thorough-paced

ο ακριβής, η ακριβής, το ακριβές –> accurate
(do not confuse with ο ακριβός, η ακριβή, το ακριβό = expensive!)

ο ασθενής, η ασθενής, το ασθενές –> ill // weak

ο δημοφιλής, η δημοφιλής, το δημοφιλές –> popular

ο συνεχής, η συνεχής, το συνεχές –> continuous

Adjectives: Degrees of Comparison

As in English, adjectives in Greek have 3 degrees of comparison:

  •  Positive
  •  Comparative
  • Superlative

To denote comparison, we use the suffixes -τερος (comparative) and -τατος (superlative).

Positive Comparative Superlative
όμορφος (pretty) ομορφότερος ομορφότατος
μακρύς (long) μακρύτερος μακρύτατος
ευγενής (noble) ευγενέστερος ευγενέστατος
The comparative and superlative degrees are declined as normal adjectives, in all three genders:
ομορφότερος, ομορφότερη, ομορφότερο
ομορφότατος, ομορφότατη, ομορφότατο

For denoting the comparative degree, we can also use the adverb of amount πιο (=more):
όμορφος –> πιο όμορφος
μακρύς  –> πιο μακρύς
ευγενής –> πιο ευγενής
There is also a “relative” superlative degree, denoting a pre-eminence among a number of similar things, eg:
όμορφος  –> ο πιο όμορφος (among two or more pretty ones)
μακρύς   –> ο πιο μακρύς  (among two or more long ones)
Possessive Pronouns & Adjectives
In a nutshell, possessive adjectives are formed just as the weak forms of personal pronouns, but only in the Genitive case.
Thus, we have:
my voice –> η φωνή μου
your mother –> η μητέρα σου
his situation  –> η κατάστασή του
her baby  –> το μωρό της
its tail –> η ουρά του
our country –> η χώρα μας
your books –> τα βιβλία σας
their father –> ο πατέρας τους
Possessive pronouns are formed with the use of the adjective (ο) δικός, (η) δική, (το) δικό
(Attention: this adjective is never used separately)
with the addition of the possessive adjective
Thus, we say:
This car is mine. –> Αυτό το αυτοκίνητο είναι δικό μου.
This chair is yours. –>  Αυτή η καρέκλα είναι δική σου.
This dog is his. –> Αυτός ο σκύλος είναι δικός του.
These books are hers. –> Αυτά τα βιβλία είναι δικά της.
This garden is ours.  –>  Αυτός ο κήπος είναι δικός μας.
This book is yours.  –>  Αυτό το βιβλίο είναι δικό σας.
These flowers are theirs. –> Αυτά τα λουλούδια είναι δικά τους.
Notice that the Greek possessive adjective (μου, σου, του, …) conforms with the English possessive adjective, while the adjective δικός, δική, δικό conforms with the noun (in genderm number & case).
Greek Verbs: Perfect Tenses
Perfect tenses, Indicative are:
  1. Present Perfect: indicates an action that happened in the past and whose outcome lasts until the present
  2. Past Perfect: indicates an action that happened in the past before another past action
  3. Future Perfect: indicates an action that will happen in the future before another future action

Perfect tenses are formed with the auxiliary verb έχω (‘to have’) in the respective simple tenses + the infinitive of the active voice, which is identical to the third person of the Simple Future.

In other words:

1. Present Perfect

(εγώ) έχω γνωρίσει  (εμείς) έχουμε γνωρίσει
(εσύ) έχεις γνωρίσει (εσείς) έχετε γνωρίσει
(αυτός) έχει γνωρίσει (αυτοί) έχουν γνωρίσει
(αυτή) έχει γνωρίσει (αυτές) έχουν γνωρίσει
(αυτό) έχει γνωρίσει (αυτά) έχουν γνωρίσει


1. Past Perfect

(εγώ) είχα γνωρίσει  (εμείς) είχαμε γνωρίσει
(εσύ) είχες γνωρίσει (εσείς) είχατε γνωρίσει
(αυτός) είχε γνωρίσει (αυτοί) είχαν γνωρίσει
(αυτή) είχε γνωρίσει (αυτές) είχαν γνωρίσει
(αυτό) είχε γνωρίσει (αυτά) είχαν γνωρίσει


1. Future Perfect

(εγώ) θα έχω γνωρίσει  (εμείς) θα έχουμε γνωρίσει
(εσύ) θα έχεις γνωρίσει (εσείς) θα έχετε γνωρίσει
(αυτός) θα έχει γνωρίσει (αυτοί) θα έχουν γνωρίσει
(αυτή) θα έχει γνωρίσει (αυτές) θα έχουν γνωρίσει
(αυτό) θα έχει γνωρίσει (αυτά) θα έχουν γνωρίσει



Transfer the following verbs in all the tenses of the Indicative that we have learned so far (Present, Imperfect, Simple Past, Future Continuous, Simple Future, Present Perfect, Past Perfect, Future Perfect). You can write the first person singular, or you can decline the verb in all persons and numbers (even better!):

πηγαίν-ω , ακού-ω , βλέπ-ω , λέ-ω , φτάν-ω , γράφ-ω , διαβάζ-ω, αρχίζ-ω, λείπ-ω, τελειών-ω, αγαπ-ώ , νικ-ώ, πετ-ώ, πηδ-ώ, κοιτ-ώ, κρατ-ώ, πον-ώ, πειν-ώ, βοηθ-ώ, λειτουργ-ώ, χρησιμοποι-ώ, καλ-ώ, ωφελ-ώ





Key to the exercise:

πηγαίν-ω –> πήγαινα, πήγα, θα πηγαίνω, θα πάω, έχω πάει, είχα πάει, θα έχω πάει

ακού-ω –> άκουγα, άκουσα, θα ακούω, θα ακούσω, έχω ακούσει, είχα ακούσει, θα έχω ακούσει

βλέπ-ω –> έβλεπα, είδα, θα βλέπω, θα δω, έχω δει, είχα δει, θα έχω δει

λέ-ω –> έλεγα, είπα, θα λέω, θα πω, έχω πει, είχα πει, θα έχω πει

φτάν-ω –> έφτανα, έφτασα, θα φτάνω, θα φτάσω, εχω φτάσει, είχα φτάσει, θα έχω φτάσει

γράφ-ω –> έγραφα, έγραψα, θα γράφω, θα γράψω, έχω γράψει, είχα γράψει, θα έχω γράψει

διαβάζ-ω –> διάβαζα, διάβασα, θα διαβάζω, θα διαβάσω, έχω διαβάσει, είχα διαβάσει, θα έχω διαβάσει

αρχίζ-ω –> άρχιζα, άρχισα, θα αρχίζω, θα αρχίσω, έχω αρχίσει, είχα αρχίσει, θα έχω αρχίσει

λείπ-ω –> έλειπα, έλειψα, θα λείπω, θα λείψω, έχω λείψει, είχα λείψει, θα έχω λείψει

τελειών-ω –> τελείωνα, τελείωσα, θα τελειώνω, θα τελειώσω, έχω τελειώσει, είχα τελειώσει, θα έχω τελειώσει

αγαπ-ώ –> αγαπούσα, αγάπησα, θα αγαπώ, θα αγαπήσω, έχω αγαπήσει, είχα αγαπήσει, θα έχω αγαπήσει

νικ-ώ –> νικούσα, νίκησα, θα νικώ, θα νικήσω, έχω νικήσει, είχα νικήσει, θα έχω νικήσει

πετ-ώ –> πετούσα, πέταξα, θα πετώ, θα πετάξω, έχω πετάξει, είχα πετάξει, θα έχω πετάξει

πηδ-ώ –> πηδούσα, πήδηξα, θα πηδώ, θα πηδήξω, έχω πηδήξει, είχα πηδήξει, θα έχω πηδήξει

κοιτ-ώ –> κοιτούσα, κοίταξα, θα κοιτώ, θα κοιτάξω, έχω κοιτάξει, είχα κοιτάξει, θα έχω κοιτάξει

κρατ-ώ –> κρατούσα, κράτησα, θα κρατώ, θα κρατήσω, έχω κρατήσει, είχα κρατήσει, θα έχω κρατήσει

πον-ώ –> πονούσα, πόνεσα, θα πονώ, θα πονέσω, έχω πονέσει, είχα πονέσει, θα έχω πονέσει

πειν-ώ –> πεινούσα, πείνασα, θα πεινώ, θα πεινάσω, έχω πεινάσει, είχα πεινάσει, θα έχω πεινάσει

βοηθ-ώ –> βοηθούσα, βοήθησα, θα βοηθώ, θα βοηθήσω, έχω βοηθήσει, είχα βοηθήσει, θα έχω βοηθήσει

λειτουργ-ώ –. λειτουργούσα, λειτούργησα, θα λειτουργώ, θα λειτουργήσω, έχω λειτουργήσει, είχα λειτουργήσει, θα έχω λειτουργήσει

χρησιμοποι-ώ –> χρησιμοποιούσα, χρησιμοποίησα, θα χρησιμοποιώ, θα χρησιμοποιησω, έχω χρησιμοποιήσει, είχα χρησιμοποιήσει, θα έχω χρησιμοποιήσει

καλ-ώ –> καλούσα, κάλεσα, θα καλώ, θα καλέσω, έχω καλέσει, είχα καλέσει, θα έχω καλέσει

ωφελ-ώ –> ωφελούσα, ωφέλησα, θα ωφελώ, θα ωφελήσω, έχω ωφελήσει,  είχα ωφελήσει, θα έχω ωφελήσει

Lesson 8: Personal Pronouns, Future Tense


In this lesson, we will learn:

    • Personal Pronouns: Declension & Use
    • Greek verbs, Part 4: Future tense (Simple & Continuous)


Personal Pronouns

The pronouns, as indicated by their name, are used instead of nouns or of nominal groups.
Personal pronouns are used in verb declension (as subjects) and in sentence syntax (as direct & indirect objects). Like verbs, they possess a person; like nouns, they possess a number and a case.
We have already seen some personal pronouns in action while studying the verbs — namely the nominative case of the subject personal pronouns. Here we will study the complete tables of personal pronouns declension:
First person
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative εγώ εμείς
Genitive εμένα εμάς
Accusative εμένα εμάς
 Second person
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative εσύ εσείς
Genitive εσένα εσάς
Accusative εσένα εσάς
Third person, masculine
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative αυτός αυτοί
Genitive αυτού αυτών
Accusative αυτόν αυτούς
Third person, feminine
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative αυτή αυτές
Genitive αυτής αυτών
Accusative αυτή(ν) αυτές
Third person, neutral
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative αυτό αυτά
Genitive αυτού αυτών
Accusative αυτό αυτά
These are called the “strong” forms of Personal Pronouns.
In modern Greek, we use the nominative case as subject to verbs.
The possessive and accusative case are employed as indirect and direct object, respectively — but for this purpose we use mostly the “weak” forms of these cases, as shown below:
First person
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative  —  —
Genitive  μου  μας
Accusative  με  μας
Second person
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative  —  —
Genitive  σου  σας
Accusative  σε  σας
Third person, masculine
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative  τος  τοι
Genitive  του  τους
Accusative  τον  τους
Third person, feminine
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative  τη  τες
Genitive  της  τους
Accusative  τη(ν)  τις / τες
Third person, neutral
Case Singular number Plural number
Nominative  το  τα
Genitive  του  τους
Accusative  το  τα

Of this “weak” form,  the nominative case is used very rarely, only in the phrases
“Να τος” (There he is), “Να τη” (There she is), etc

– How to use Personal Pronouns in a sentence

We already know how to use the nominative case of personal pronouns (“strong” forms) as subject to verbs. Let us now see how we can use them as

Direct Object (accusative case, “weak” form)

I looked at him. –> Τον κοίταξα.
(Confused? In Greek, the verb κοιτάζω takes a direct  object)

I know this. –> Το γνωρίζω.

I used the tools. –> I used them. –> Τα χρησιμοποίησα.

Indirect Object (possessive case, “weak” form)

I wrote her a letter. –> Της έγραψα ένα γράμμα.

I miss you. –> Μου λείπεις.
(Now, this is a tricky one:  In English the subject of the verb “to miss” is the person feeling the lack. In Greek though, “λείπω” literally means “being absent” — thus, the subject is the person being absent and the person feeling the lack becomes the indirect object.)


The  Future 

Future tenses are marked by the presence of the Future Particle — θα — (=will)


Future Continuous is very simple to form: it is the Present tense preceded by the future particle. Thus, we have:

κάνω ( to do) –> θα κάνω (I will be doing)

πηγαίνω (to go) –>  θα πηγαίν-ω (I will be going)

βλέπ-ω (to see) –> θα βλέπω (I will be seeing)

αγαπώ (to love) –> θα αγαπώ (I will be loving)

χρησιμοποιώ (to use) –> θα χρησιμοποιώ (I will be using)


Simple Future is based on the theme of Simple Past:

πηγαίν-ω –> είπα –> θα πω

ακού-ω –> άκουσα –> θα ακούσω

βλέπ-ω –> είδα –> θα δω

λέ-ω –> είπα –> θα πω

φτάν-ω –> έφτασα –> θα φτάσω

γνωρίζ-ω –> γνώρισα –> θα γνωρίσω

γράφ-ω –> έγραψα –> θα γράψω

διαβάζ-ω –> διάβασα –> θα διαβάσω

αρχίζ-ω –> άρχισα –> θα αρχίσω

λείπ-ω –> έλειψα –> θα λείψω

τελειών-ω –> τελείωσα –> θα τελειώσω

αγαπώ –> αγάπησα –> θα αγαπήσω

νικ-ώ –> νίκησα –> θα νικήσω

πετ-ώ –> πέταξα –> θα πετάξω

πηδ-ώ –> πήδηξα –> θα πηδήξω

κοιτ-ώ –> κοίταξα –> θα κοιτάξω

κρατ-ώ –> κράτησα –> θα κρατήσω

πον-ώ –> πόνεσα –> θα πονέσω

πειν-ώ –> πείνασα –> θα πεινάσω

βοηθ-ώ –> βοήθησα –> θα βοηθήσω

λειτουργ-ώ –> λειτούργησα –> θα λειτουργήσω

χρησιμοποι-ώ –> χρησιμοποίησα –> θα χρησιμοποιήσω

καλ-ώ –> κάλεσα –> θα καλέσω

ωφελ-ώ –> ωφέλησα –> θα ωφελήσω


We see that the prefix –ε-that denotes the past tense is dropped and that the stress also drops onto the next syllable.




Transfer the verbs to the tenses requested. Do not change the number or person.

  1. πεινάς                                     :  Imperfect, Simple Future
  2. δείχνουμε (=point to)      :  Simple Past, Future Continuous
  3. βάφετε ( = to paint)           :  Imperfect, Future Continuous
  4. λαδώνουν (=to oil)            :  Simple Future, Future Continuous
  5. στραγγίζει (=to drain)       :  Simple Past, Imperfect
  6. μαγειρεύεις (=to cook)      :  Imperfect, Future Continuous


Key to the exercise:

  1. πεινούσες, θα πεινάσεις
  2. δείξαμε, θα δείχνουμε
  3. βάφατε, θα βάφετε
  4. θα λαδώσουν, θα λαδώνουν
  5. στράγγισε, στράγγιζε
  6. μαγείρευες, θα μαγειρεύεις

Lesson 7: Greek Nouns, Simple Past, Vocabulary, Greek Sentences


In this lesson, we will learn:

  • Noun declension, Part 5: Masculine & Feminine nouns with an additional syllable in the plural number
  • Greek verbs, Part 3: Simple Past (active voice)
  • Adverbs (time, place, manner)
1. Noun Declension
In the previous lesson, we saw that the noun “καφετζής” (coffee shop owner) took an additional syllable in the plural number.
This may happen to a number of masculine nouns ending in -ης/-ής,
as well as to all nouns ending in -άς, -ές, -ούς (all stressed on the ultimate).
Let’s see how they are declined:

Singular Plural
Nom. o κουβ-άς(bucket) οι κουβ-άδες
Gen. του κουβ-ά των κουβ-άδων
Acc. τον κουβ-ά τους κουβ-άδες
Voc. κουβ-ά κουβ-άδες

Other nouns ending in -άς are:

ο χαλβάς –> halva

ο αρακάς –> snow pea

ο ψαράς –> fisherman

ο μυλωνάς –> miller

ο καβγάς –> argument, row

ο βοριάς –> the north wind

ο νοτιάς –> the south wind


Singular Plural
Nom. o καφ-ές(coffee) οι καφ-έδες
Gen. του καφ-έ των καφ-έδων
Acc. τον καφ-έ τους καφ-έδες
Voc. καφ-έ καφ-έδες

Other nouns ending in -ές are:

ο λεκές –> stain

ο μεζές –> meze, tapas

ο τενεκές –> tin


Singular Plural
Nom. o παππ-ούς (grandfather) οι παππ-ούδες
Gen. του παππ-ού των παππ-ούδων
Acc. τον παππ-ού τους παππ-ούδες
Voc. παππ-ού παππ-ούδες

Other common nouns ending in -ούς are:

ο νους –> mind

ο Ιησούς –> Jesus

Their particularity is that they have only a singular number.


– Feminine nouns in -ού and in -α / -ά with an additional syllable in the plural number:

Singular Plural
Nom. η αλεπ-ού (fox) οι αλεπ-ούδες
Gen. της αλεπ-ούς των αλεπ-ούδων
Acc. την αλεπ-ού τις αλεπ-ούδες
Voc. αλεπ-ού αλεπ-ούδες


Singular Plural
Nom. η μάν-α (mother) οι μαν-άδες
Gen. της μάν-ας των μαν-άδων
Acc. τη μάν-α τις μαν-άδες
Voc. μάν-α μαν-άδες


Singular Plural
Nom. η γιαγι-ά (grandmother) οι γιαγι-άδες
Gen. της γιαγι-άς των γιαγι-άδων
Acc. τη γιαγι-ά τις γιαγι-άδες
Voc. γιαγι-ά γιαγι-άδες



2. Greek Verbs, Part 3

Simple Past

1. Verbs in -ω: γνωρίζω

εγώ γνώρ-ισα (I knew) εμείς γνωρ-ίσαμε
εσύ γνώρ-ισες εσείς γνωρ-ίσατε
αυτός γνώρ-ισε αυτοί γνώρ-ισαν
αυτή γνώρ-ισε αυτές γνώρ-ισαν
αυτό γνώρ-ισε αυτά γνώρ-ισαν

We see that the consonant in the ending is different: Simple Past is characterized by the presence of the consonant -σ- or for a high occurrence of various irregular tense roots. Thus, we have:

κάνω (to do) –> έκανα (irregular, identical to Imperfect)

πηγαίν-ω (to go) –> πήγα (irregular)

ακού-ω (to hear, to listen) –> άκουσα

βλέπ-ω (to see) –> είδα (irregular)

λέ-ω (to tell) –> είπα (irregular)

φτάν-ω (to arrive) –> έφτασα

γνωρίζ-ω (to know) –> γνώρισα

γράφ-ω (to write) –> έγραψα (ψ = π+σ)

διαβάζ-ω (to read) –> διάβασα

αρχίζ-ω (to start) –> άρχισα

λείπ-ω (to miss, to be absent) –> έλειψα

τελειών-ω (to finish) –> τέλειωσα


2. Verbs in -άω, -ώ: αγαπώ

εγώ αγάπ-ησα (I loved) εμείς αγαπ-ήσαμε
εσύ αγάπ-ησες εσείς αγαπ-ήσατε
αυτός αγάπ-ησε αυτοί αγάπ-ησαν
αυτή αγάπ-ησε αυτές αγάπ-ησαν
αυτό αγάπ-ησε αυτά αγάπ-ησαν


νικ-ώ (to win) –> νίκησα

πετ-ώ (1. to fly // 2. to throw) –> πέταξα (ξ = κ+σ)

πηδ-ώ (to jump) –> πήδηξα

κοιτ-ώ (to look) –> κοίταξα

κρατ-ώ (to hold) –> κράτησα

πον-ώ (to ache) –> πόνεσα

πειν-ώ (to be hungry) –> πείνασα

βοηθ-ώ (to help) –> βοήθησα


Verbs in -έω, -ώ: κινώ

εγώ κίν-ησα (I moved) εμείς κιν-ήσαμε
εσύ κίν-ησες εσείς κιν-ήσατε
αυτός κίν-ησε αυτοί κίν-ησαν
αυτή κίν-ησε αυτές κίν-ησαν
αυτό κίν-ησε αυτά κίν-ησαν

Thus we have:

λειτουργ-ώ = to function –> λειτούργησα

χρησιμοποι-ώ = to use –> χρησιμοποίησα

καλ-ώ = to call // to invite –> κάλεσα

ωφελ-ώ = to benefit –> ωφέλησα




Adverbs of time

τώρα –> now

πριν –> before

μετά (από) –> after

σήμερα –> today

χθες –> yesterday

αύριο –> tomorrow

φέτος –> this year

πέρισυ –> last year

του χρόνου –> next year

αργά –> late

νωρίς –> early

Adverbs of place

εδώ –> here

εκεί –> there

πάνω (από) –> above, on top of

κάτω (από) –> below, under

μπροστά (από) –> in front of, to the front

πίσω (από) –> behind

δίπλα (σε) –> beside

δεξιά –> to the right

αριστερά –> to the left

Adverbs of manner

έτσι –> like this

αλλιώς –> in another way

αργά –> slowly

γρήγορα –> quickly

δυνατά –> strongly

Adverbs of amount

πολύ –> much

λίγο –> a bit, little

πολύ λίγο –> too little

υπερβολικά –> too much


Building Sentences in Greek

How would you say in Greek?

1. Yesterday I said ‘Good morning’ to grandfather.

2. The fisherman went to the sea and saw a beautiful cave.

3. The foxes ate the birds.

4. I read many books (βιβλίο, decline as πεύκο) last year.

5. Mary (Μαρία) is a good girl, but Paul (Παύλος) is a bad kid.



Key to the exercise:

1. Χθες είπα “Καλημέρα” στον παππού.

2. Ο ψαράς πήγε στη θάλασσα και είδε μια όμορφη σπηλιά.

3. Οι αλεπούδες έφαγαν τα πουλιά.

4. Διάβασα πολλά βιβλία πέρισυ.

5. Η Μαρία είναι καλό κορίτσι, αλλά ο Παύλος είναι κακό παιδί.


Lesson 6: More Greek Nouns & Adjectives, Imperfect Tense, Vocabulary, Greek Dialogues

In this lesson, we will learn:

  • Noun declension, Part 4: Masculine nouns in -ης, Neutral nouns in -ο, -ι
  • Adjectives, Part 2: Irregular Adjective πολύς, πολλή, πολύ
  • Greek verbs, Part 2: Imperfect Indicative (active voice)
  • Final -ν, Punctuation marks
  • Greek vocabulary / standard phrases

…plus, we will continue forming phrases and we will try ourselves with some exercises.

1. Noun Declension

In this lesson, we shall examine Masculine nouns ending in -της and in -ης (there are some particularities concerning the latter). We shall also look at Neutral nouns, namely the ones ending in -ο and in .

Masculine nouns ending in -της

When stressed on the penultimate, they roll over their stress to the last syllable in the genitive plural:

Singular Plural
Nom. o πολίτ-ης(citizen) οι πολίτ-ες
Gen. του πολίτ-η των πολιτ-ών
Acc. τον πολίτ-η τους πολίτ-ες
Voc. πολίτ-η πολίτ-ες

When stressed on the last syllable, well, no reason to worry about – the stress does not budge a single inch:

Singular Plural
Nom. o μαθητ-ής(pupil) οι μαθητ-ές
Gen. του μαθητ-ή των μαθητ-ών
Acc. τον μαθητ-ή τους μαθητ-ές
Voc. μαθητ-ή μαθητ-ές

The Masculine nouns ending in -ης, -ής (without the -τ-) are a bit trickier, since they take on an additional syllable in the plural number. Thus, we have:

ο καφετζής, οι καφετζήδες (coffee-shop owner)
ο μανάβης, οι μανάβηδες (greengrocer)
ο φούρναρης, οι φουρνάρηδες (baker)

Let us see how they are declensed one by one:

1. In the case of a noun stressed on the last syllable, in the plural the stressed vowel retains the stress despite the addition of the plural suffix.

Singular Plural
Nom. o καφετζ-ής οι καφετζ-ήδες
Gen. του καφετζ των καφετζ-ήδων
Acc. τον καφετζ-ή τους καφετζ-ήδες
Voc. καφετζ-ή καφετζ-ήδες

2. As in the previous case, the stressed vowel (penultimate) retains its stress in plural despite the addition of the plural suffix. This means that the plural is stressed on the antepenult.

Singular Plural
Nom. o μανάβ-ης οι μανάβ-ηδες
Gen. του μανάβ των μανάβ-ηδων
Acc. το μανάβ-η τους μανάβ-ηδες
Voc. μανάβ-η μανάβ-ηδες

3. When the noun is stressed on the antepenult and takes on an additional suffix denoting the plural, then we should apply the rule stipulating that a word cannot be stressed beyond the antepenult. Thus, the stress rolls over to the next syllable, as follows:

Singular Plural
Nom. o φούρναρ-ης οι φουρνάρ-ηδες
Gen. του φούρναρ των φουρνάρ-ηδων
Acc. το φούρναρ-η τους φουρνάρ-ηδες
Voc. φούρναρ-η φουρνάρ-ηδες


Neutral nouns ending in -o

We have already learnt how to inflect Neutral nouns ending in (stressed on the last syllable). Now we shall examine nouns ending in -o; in other words, the ones being stressed on the penultimate and on the antepenult.

Now, when stressed on the penultimate, things are very easy:

Singular Plural
Nom. το δέντρ-ο(tree) τα δέντρ-α
Gen. του δέντρ-ου των δέντρ-ων
Acc. το δέντρ-ο τα δέντρ-α
Voc. δέντρ-ο δέντρ-α

When stressed on the antepenult, on the other hand, we’ll see that in the genitive (singular and plural) the stress rolls down to the penultimate. Once again, this happens due to the -ου- and the -ω- vowels in the ending of the word (see Lesson 4, Word Sress Rules):

Singular Plural
Nom. το θέατρ-ο(theatre) τα θέατρ-α
Gen. του θεάτρ-ου των θεάτρ-ων
Acc. το θέατρ-ο τα θέατρ-α
Voc. θέατρ-ο θέατρ-α

Neutral nouns ending in -ι

Stressed on the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. το παιδ-ί  τα παιδ-ιά
Gen. του παιδ-ιού των παιδ-ιών
Acc. το παιδ-ί τα παιδ-ιά
Voc. παιδ-ί παιδ-ιά

When stressed on the penultimate, we notice that the genitive (singular and plural) once again rolls the stress down to the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. το λουλούδ-ι(flower) τα λουλούδ-ια
Gen. του λουλουδ-ιού των λουλουδ-ιών
Acc. το λουλούδ-ι τα λουλούδ-ια
Voc. λουλούδ-ι λουλούδ-ια


2. The Adjectives

Irregular adjective πολύς, πολλή, πολύ

This is a quite common adjective in Greek – and, believe it or not, Greeks sometimes make mistakes when using it. Nevertheless, we shall study it thoroughly – just, don’t feel guilty if you don’t get it right from the start.

Πολύς means

  • (a good) many, much (=great)
  • a lot / lots of, plenty

depending on the context. A few examples:

Αυτός τρώει πολύ φαγητό. (He eats a lot of food.)
Έχουμε πολλά δέντρα στην αυλή. (We have many trees in the yard.)
Εσείς έχετε πολλή υπομονή. (You have much/great patience.)
Αυτή έχει πολλούς φίλους. (She has lots of friends.)

Do not confuse with the Adverb πολύ (=very):
Είμαι πολύ καλός. (I am very good.)
Θα αργήσω πολύ απόψε. (I’ll be very late tonight.)

1. Masculine

Singular Plural
Nom. o πολ-ύς οι πολ-λοί
Gen. του των πολ-λών
Acc. τον πολ-ύ τους πολ-λούς
Voc. (πολ-λοί)

2. Feminine

Singular Plural
Nom. η πολ-λή οι πολ-λές
Gen. της πολ-λής των πολ-λών
Acc. την πολ-λή τις πολ-λές
Voc. (πολ-λές)

3. Neutral

Singular Plural
Nom. το πολ-ύ τα πολ-λά
Gen. του των πολ-λών
Acc. το πολ-ύ τα πολ-λά
Voc. (πολ-λά)


3. Greek verbs, Part 2

Imperfect Indicative (Present in -ω)

εγώ έ-καν-α (I was doing*) εμείς κάν-αμε
εσύ έ-καν-ες εσείς κάν-ατε
αυτός έ-καν-ε αυτοί έ-καν-αν
αυτή έ-καν-ε αυτές έ-καν-αν
αυτό έ-καν-ε αυτά έ-καν-αν

(* Or, ‘I used to do’)

What happens here is that a prefix (έ-) is added to denote the past tense. Yet, not every time. The rule is that the verb must be stressed on the antepenult. When there is an antepenult, things are easy, we just move the stress. When there is no antepenult, we create it by adding the said prefix.

Thus, we can form the Imperfect of the verbs we learnt in the previous lesson:

πηγαίν-ω –> πήγαιν-α

ακού-ω –> άκου-γ-α

βλέπ-ω –> έ-βλεπ-α

λέ-ω –> έ-λε-γ-α

φτάν-ω –> έ-φταν-α

γνωρίζ-ω –> γνώριζ-α

γράφ-ω –> έ-γραφ-α

διαβάζ-ω –> διάβαζ-α

αρχίζ-ω –> άρχιζ-α

λείπ-ω –> έ-λειπ-α

τελειών-ω –> τέλειων-α

Remark: As you can see, when the theme (the root of the verb) ends in a vowel (e.g. ακού-ω, λέ-ω), we insert a consonant before the ending (άκουγα, έλεγα).


Imperfect (present in )

No prefix added here, the verb is stressed on the ending as follows:

εγώ αγαπ-ούσα εμείς αγαπ-ούσαμε
εσύ αγαπ-ούσες εσείς αγαπ-ούσατε
αυτός αγαπ-ούσε αυτοί αγαπ-ούσαν
αυτή αγαπ-ούσε αυτές αγαπ-ούσαν
αυτό αγαπ-ούσε αυτά αγαπ-ούσαν

Likewise, we can now form the verbs

νικ-ώ –> νικ-ούσα

πετ-ώ –> πετ-ούσα

πηδ-ώ –> πηδ-ούσα

κοιτ-ώ –> κοιτ-ούσα

κρατ-ώ –> κρατ-ούσα

πον-ώ –> πον-ούσα

πειν-ώ –> πειν-ούσα

βοηθ-ώ –> βοηθ-ούσα


Verbs in -έω –> are formed in the same manner – so, we have:

λειτουργ-ώ –> λειτουργ-ούσα

χρησιμοποι-ώ –> χρησιμοποι-ούσα

καλ-ώ –> καλ-ούσα

ωφελ-ώ –> ωφελ-ούσα


We have already seen that the articles (singular accusative) sometimes keep the final and sometimes lose it.
The same happens with the word δε(ν) = not (e.g. Δεν τρώω αυγά, I do not eat eggs), as well as with certain pronouns (αυτήν, την, again in singular accusative).
The rule is simple and it has to do with the first letter of the word following our article, pronoun or other word:
Final is retained when the next word starts with:
  • a vowel, double vowel or vowel combination
  • the consonants κ, π, τ, ξ, ψ
  • the double letters μπ, ντ, γκ
  • the consonant combinations τσ, τζ


την αυλή (the yard)την πέτρα (the stone)

την μπάλα (the ball)

τη σκάλα (the ladder)τη λύση (the solution)
τον άνθρωπο (the man)τον κήπο (the garden) το σκύλο (the dog)το φίλο (the friend)
δεν έχω (I don’t have)δεν κάνω (I don’t do)

δεν ξέρω (I don’t know)

δε βλέπω (I don’t see)δε φτάνω (I don’t arrive)

δε δίνω (I don’t give)

τον έχω (I have him)την έδενα (I was tying her) τον βλέπω* (I see him)τη λύνω (I untie her)
*The masculine pronoun keeps the final -ν no matter what the next letter.

Greek Vocabulary / Greek dialogues:

Greeting somebody:

Formal greeting (to an elder/unknown person, showing courtesy):
– Χαίρετε, πώς είστε; (= Hello, how are you?)
The use of plural number (2nd person) for addressing somebody denotes a more formal manner of speaking.

Less formal (to a friend or a minor):
– Γεια σου, πώς είσαι; / Γεια σου, τι κάνεις;
(Hello, how are you? / Hello, how are you doing?)

Answering to the above questions:
– Καλά, ευχαριστώ. (Fine, thank you)

And we may ask, in turn:
Εσύ; / Εσείς; (And you?)

Starting a phone call:

– Παρακαλώ; Ποιος είναι; or,
– Ορίστε; Ποιος είναι;
Hello. Who is this? (Who’s calling?)

– Καλημέρα / Καλησπέρα. Λέγομαι (John Smith). Μπορώ να μιλήσω στην κυρία Παπαδοπούλου, παρακαλώ;
Good morning / Good evening. My name is (John Smith). Can I speak to Mrs Papadopoulou, please?

At the clerk/cashier counter/office:

– Παρακαλώ, θα ήθελα…. (Please, I would like…)
– Παρακαλώ, χρειάζομαι… (Please, I need…)

To ask politely for permission or information:

– Με συγχωρείτε, μπορείτε να μου πείτε…
(Excuse me, could you tell me…)

Greetings according to the time of day:

Καλημέρα = Good morning (from daybreak to noon… and beyond)
Καλησπέρα = Good evening (from about 14:00 till late at night)
Καλό βράδυ = Good evening (when taking leave, from 18:00 to 20:00, sometimes even later, especially in the summer, when days are longer)
Καληνύχτα = Good night (when taking leave, late at night)

Adverbs of Time:

Σήμερα = Today
Αύριο = Tomorrow
Χθες = Yesterday
Τώρα = Now
Πριν = Before
Μετά = After



I. In the following sentences, choose the right option:

1. Καλημέρα. Με λένε Γιώργο και έχω / έχεις τρία παιδιούς / παιδιά.
2. Αυτό είναι ένα / μία μεγάλο τραπέζι.
3. Η μητέρα πηγαίνει / πηγαίνουν στην Αθήνα.
4. Εσύ πεινάμε / πεινάς. Το / Η φαγητό είναι έτοιμης / έτοιμο.
5. Το ξενοδοχείο είναι ευγενικό / ωραίο.

II. Put the verb in the correct form:

1. Η γυναίκα (είμαι) ________ καλή.
2. Η βροχή (πέφτω) __________ .
3. Εμείς (βλέπω) _________ τον ήλιο.
4. Χθες τα παιδιά (διαβάζω) ________ μέχρι αργά (until late).
5. Αυτός (γνωρίζω) _________ τη Μέριλιν Μονρό.


Key to the exercises:

1. έχω, παιδιά
2. ένα
3. πηγαίνει
4. πεινάς, το, έτοιμο
5. ωραίο

1. είναι
2. πέφτει
3. βλέπουμε
4. διάβαζαν
5. γνώριζε

Lesson 5: Nouns, Adjectives, Verbs – Greek Standard Phrases

In this lesson, we will learn:

  • Noun declension, Part 3: Masculine nouns in -ας, Feminine nouns in -η
  • Adjectives, Part 1
  • Greek verbs, Part 1: Present Indicative in -ω, -ώ
  • Greek standard phrases

…and, of course, we will continue forming phrases with the vocabulary and constructions we have learnt so far.

1. Noun Declension

In this lesson, we shall focus again on Masculine and Feminine nouns, as they are far more differentiated than Neutral nouns.

Masculine nouns ending in -ας

Stressed on the penultimate, but keeping the stress intact:

Singular Plural
Nom. o σωλήν-ας

(pipe, tube)

οι σωλήν-ες
Gen. του σωλήν-α των σωλήν-ων
Acc. το σωλήν-α τους σωλήν-ες
Voc. σωλήν-α σωλήν-ες


Stressed on the penultimate, but rolling the stress to the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. o μήν-ας


οι μήν-ες
Gen. του μήν-α των μην-ών
Acc. το μήν-α τους μήν-ες
Voc. μήν-α μήν-ες


Stressed on the antepenult:

Singular Plural
Nom. o γείτον-ας


οι γείτον-ες
Gen. του γείτον των γειτόν-ων
Acc. το γείτον-α τους γείτον-ες
Voc. γείτον-α γείτον-ες

As you can see again, the genitive plural ending in -ων (a ‘long’ vowel) compels the stress to ‘descend’ and rest on the penultimate. (See Lesson 4, for Greek Words Stress Rules)

Feminine nouns ending in -η: first group

Stressed on the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. η φων-ή


οι φων-ές
Gen. της φων-ής των φων-ών
Acc. τη φων-ή τις φων-ές
Voc. φων-ή φων-ές


Stressed on the penultimate:

Singular Plural
Nom. η τέχν-η

(art, craft)

οι τέχν-ες
Gen. της τέχν-ης των τεχν-ών
Acc. την τέχν-η τις τέχν-ες
Voc. τέχν-η τέχν-ες


Feminine nouns ending in -η: 2nd group

Stressed on the penultimate:

Singular Plural
Nom. η πόλ-η


οι πόλ-εις
Gen. της πόλ-ης των πόλ-εων
Acc. την πόλ-η τις πόλ-εις
Voc. πόλ-η πόλ-εις


Stressed on the antepenult:

Singular Plural
Nom. η κατάστασ-η


οι καταστάσ-εις
Gen. της κατάστασ-ης των καταστάσ-εων
Acc. την κατάστασ-η τις καταστάσ-εις
Voc. κατάστασ-η καταστάσ-εις

This group of feminine nouns in -η is inflected using a more ancient scheme of endings – which, of course, influences stressing:

  • the double vowel -ει- in this position is considered a ‘long’ one and compels the stress to move down to the penultimate in the Nominative, Accusative and Vocative of Plural
  • the Genitive Plural ending -εων actually consists of 2 syllables, thus transforming the penultimate -στά- to antepenultimate.

Greek pupils have trouble too learning these rules. It’s one thing incorporating a language as your mother tongue and another, entirely different, to learn why you speak the way you do…


2. The Adjectives

Greek adjectives have 3 genders. Today we will examine those with endings similar to the ones taught for Nouns.

Thus, we have:

ο μικρός, η μικρή, το μικρό (small)

ο μεγάλ-ος, η μεγάλ-η, το μεγάλ-ο (big)

ο ακριβ-ός, η ακριβ-ή, το ακριβ-ό (expensive)

ο φτην-ός, η φτην-ή, το φτην-ό (cheap)

ο καλ-ός, η καλ-ή, το καλ-ό (good)

ο κακ-ός, η κακ-ή, το κακ-ό (bad)

ο ωραί-ος, η ωραί-α, το ωραί-ο (beautiful)

ο νόστιμ-ος, η νόστιμ-η, το νόστιμ-ο (tasty)

They are inflected just like the respective nouns. You can do it yourself, go ahead…

3. Greek verbs, Part 1

Present Indicative in -ω (stressed on the penultimate)

εγώ κάν-ω (I do) εμείς κάν-ουμε
εσύ κάν-εις εσείς κάν-ετε
αυτός κάν-ει αυτοί κάν-ουν
αυτή κάν-ει αυτές κάν-ουν
αυτό κάν-ει αυτά κάν-ουν

Likewise, we can now form the verbs

πηγαίν-ω (to go)

ακού-ω (to hear, to listen)

βλέπ-ω (to see)

λέ-ω (to tell)

φτάν-ω (to arrive)

γνωρίζ-ω (to know)

γράφ-ω (to write)

διαβάζ-ω (to read)

αρχίζ-ω (to start)

λείπ-ω (to miss, to be absent)

τελειών-ω (to finish)


Present Indicative in -ώ (from -άω)

εγώ αγαπ-ώ (I love) εμείς αγαπ-άμε
εσύ αγαπ-άς εσείς αγαπ-άτε
αυτός αγαπ-ά αυτοί αγαπ-ούν
αυτή αγαπ-ά αυτές αγαπ-ούν
αυτό αγαπ-ά αυτά αγαπ-ούν

Likewise, we can now form the verbs

νικ-ώ (to win)

πετ-ώ (1. to fly // 2. to throw)

πηδ-ώ (to jump)

κοιτ-ώ (to look)

κρατ-ώ (to hold)

πον-ώ (to ache)

πειν-ώ (to be hungry)

βοηθ-ώ (to help)

Present Indicative in -ώ (from -έω)

εγώ κιν-ώ (I move, intr.) εμείς κιν-ούμε
εσύ κιν-είς εσείς κιν-είτε
αυτός κιν-εί αυτοί κιν-ούν
αυτή κιν-εί αυτές κιν-ούν
αυτό κιν-εί αυτά κιν-ούν

Likewise, we can form the verbs

λειτουργ-ώ = to function

χρησιμοποι-ώ = to use

καλ-ώ = to call // to invite

ωφελ-ώ = to benefit

— You can do it too…

Some more elements that will help us build sentences are:

1. The conjunctive particle να (~to), connecting verbs

  • Θέλω να κοιμηθώ. I want to sleep.
  • Πρέπει να φύγουμε. We must go. (The verb is impersonal, and the person is denoted by the verb of the subordinate phrase.)
  • Μου αρέσει να ξυπνάω νωρίς. I like waking up early. (One more impersonal verb; this is mere coincidence though…)
  • Πηγαίνω να κάνω ένα μπάνιο. I’m going off to take a bath.

2. The Preposition σε added to the Definitive Article to denote movement (to) or position.

σε + το => στο

σε + τα => στα

σε + το(ν) => στο(ν)

σε + τις => στις, etc…


Η Μαρία πηγαίνει στο σχολείο. Maria goes to school.

Το βιβλίο είναι πάνω στο τραπέζι. The book is on the table.

Δώσε το πιάτο στον Αντώνη. Give the plate to Antonis.







Now, you may combine all the elements we have learnt so far, i.e.
  • articles
  • nouns
  • adjectives
  • verbs + auxiliary verbs

using the rules concerning Greek sentence structure, to make your own sentences.

Go over all previous Lessons and prepare for a set of intensive Revision Exercises for next week.

Meanwhile, learn some Standard Greek phrases:

Ευχαριστώ = Thank you

Παρακαλώ = 1. You’re welcome // 2. Please,…

Πόσο κάνει; Πόσο κοστίζει; = How much does it cost?

Πού βρίσκεται; = Where is it?

Θα ήθελα μία / ένα… = I’d like a…

Θέλω ένα δωμάτιο, παρακαλώ = I want a room, please.

Lesson 4: Basic Greek Sentences, Noun and Verb Declension, Indefinite Article

In this lesson, we will learn:

  • Noun declension, Part 2: Masculine nouns in -ος, Feminine nouns in -α
  • Indefinite article (ένας, μία, ένα)
  • Basic structure of Greek sentences
  • some more Greek vocabulary

We will also start forming simple sentences, using the rules and vocabulary we’ve been through up to now.

1. Noun Declension

In Lesson 3 we discussed nouns, how they are differentiated by gender and how gramatical gender does not necessarily coincide with natural gender in Greek language. We also laid out 3 examples of noun declension, one for each gender.

Today, we’ll start elaborating on different noun groups and on inflection peculiarities for each one. First, though, we should make a remark on Stressing, as declension calls sometimes for fluctuation of word stress within a paradigm.

Word Stress Rules

Greek words usually have one to six (or even more) syllables.

  • The iron rule is that no word may receive a stress before the antepenult (3rd syllable from the end). To put it differently, Greek words are stressed only on the last, penultimate and antepenult syllables, whether they are simple or composite words and no matter the number of syllables of which they are constructed.
  • When the last syllable of a noun bears the vowels-η- and -ω- or the double vowel -ου- (in ancient Greek these were pronounced as long vowels), then the antepenult cannot be stressed. See the tables below for examples.

Now, after putting forth the above basic rules, we can proceed to inflecting some more Greek nouns, beginning with…

Masculine nouns ending in -ος

Stressed on the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. o καπν-ός


οι καπν-οί
Gen. του καπν-ού των καπν-ών
Acc. τον καπν-ό τους καπν-ούς
Voc. καπν-έ καπν-οί

Stressed on the penultimate:

Singular Plural
Nom. o κήπ-ος


οι κήπ-οι
Gen. του κήπ-ου των κήπ-ων
Acc. τον κήπ-ο τους κήπ-ους
Voc. κήπ-ε κήπ-οι

Stressed on the antepenult:

Singular Plural
Nom. o άγγελ-ος


οι άγγελ-οι
Gen. του αγγέλ-ου των αγγέλ-ων
Acc. τον άγγελ-ο τους αγγέλ-ους
Voc. άγγελ-ε άγγελ-οι

You must have noticed that, in this last paradigm, where the word is stressed on the antepenult, the stress “descends” on the genitive of singular and plural, as well as on the accusative of plural, where the syllables contain the letters -ω- and -ου-, according to the above mentioned Greek word stressing rule.

This happens on the majority of masculine nouns of this group, especially on those which have been in use for many centuries (most are in use since Antiquity, although with slight changes). On the other hand, popular words of more recent origin do not follow the rule. For convenience sake, I shall henceforward introduce new vocabulary (nouns) by mentioning the singular vocative and plural genitive cases, e.g. o άνθρωπος, των ανθρώπων (human). This will help you locate the nouns into their respective declension groups.

Feminine nouns ending in -α: first group

Stressed on the last syllable:

Singular Plural
Nom. η χαρ-ά


οι χαρ-ές
Gen. της χαρ-άς των χαρ-ών
Acc. τη χαρ-ά τις χαρ-ές
Voc. χαρ-ά χαρ-ές

Stressed on the penultimate:

Singular Plural
Nom. η ώρ-α


οι ώρ-ες
Gen. της ώρ-ας των ωρ-ών
Acc. την ώρ-α τις ώρ-ες
Voc. ώρ-α ώρ-ες

Stressed on the antepenult:

Singular Plural
Nom. η θάλασσ-α


οι θάλασσ-ες
Gen. της θάλασσ-ας των θαλασσ-ών
Acc. τη θάλασσ-α τις θάλασσ-ες
Voc. θάλασσ-α θάλασσ-ες

Note: We see that, in this group of feminine nouns, in the plural genitive the stress “descends” to the last syllable (remember ‘γυναίκα’ from Lesson 3?).

Don’t worry. After completing our lessons on Greek nouns declension, a comprehensive table of stressing rules for all 3 genders will be available for you, to help you with a more systematic revision. Now, let’s go and see…

Feminine nouns ending in -α: 2nd group

Stressed on the penultimate:

Singular Plural
Nom. η μητέρ-α


οι μητέρ-ες
Gen. της μητέρ-ας των μητέρ-ων
Acc. τη μητέρ-α τις μητέρ-ες
Voc. μητέρ-α μητέρ-ες

Stressed on the antepenult:

Singular Plural
Nom. η ταχύτητ-α


οι ταχύτητ-ες
Gen. της ταχύτητ-ας των ταχυτήτ-ων
Acc. την ταχύτητ-α τις ταχύτητ-ες
Voc. ταχύτητ-α ταχύτητ-ες

Unlike the previous group, this 2nd group of feminine nouns in -α does not require the stress descending to the last syllable (η μητέρα). In the case of ‘ταχύτητα’, it is the stressing rule about “long” vowels (the -ω- of genitive) forcing the stress to move down to the penultimate.

To practice a little with noun declension, you can take your notebook and exercise by inflecting the following nouns:

ο βοσκός (shepherd)

ο έμπορος, των εμπόρων (merchant)

ο κίνδυνος, των κινδύνων (danger)

ο γέρος, των γέρων (old-man)

η σπηλιά (cave)

η ελπίδα, των ελπίδων (hope)

η χώρα, των χωρών (country)


2. The Indefinite Article

Like a, an in English, the Greek indefinite article appears only in the Singular number.

Note: Context and practice will help you distinguish between the Numeral  for ‘one’ (ένα) and the Indefinite article, as they are practically the same in form.


Masc. Fem. Neutr.










3. Basic Structure of Greek Sentences

Nothing complicated really.

As with English, the basic Greek sentence is comprised of

Subject       +        Predicate

The subject may be a pronoun or a nominal group.

The predicate (= “the part of sentence or clause that expresses what is said of the subject,” is a Verb, either alone (e.g. I sleep, Εγώ κοιμάμαι) or accompanied by

  • an object (direct or indirect)
  • a complement (a nominal group)
  • an adverb.

Some examples of useful Greek phrases:

Το πλοίο φεύγει στις 8 ακριβώς. The boat leaves at 8 o’clock. (verb accompanied by an adverb)

To τρένο φεύγει από την αποβάθρα 2. The train leaves from platform 2. (verb accompanied by a nominal group introduced by a preposition)

(Εγώ)* θέλω ένα ποτήρι νερό. I want a glass of water. (verb accompanied by a direct object)

Η θάλασσα είναι ζεστή. The sea is warm. (verb accompanied by an adjective)

* Notice that in Greek language the presence of the pronoun is not compulsory. Thus, we can say,

Εγώ είμαι Έλληνας (I am Greek), but we can also say

Είμαι Έλληνας, omitting the pronoun (εγώ, I).

Nevertheless, we shall most definitely use a pronoun, when there is danger of getting confused over which the subject is.

Lesson 3: Pronunciation, Article & Noun Declension, Verb “to have”


  • Learn one more set of letters (vowels) combinations
  • Declension: definite article, nouns (Part 1)
  • Auxiliary verb έχω (to have)

1. Vowel combinations

In Lesson 2, we learnt how to pronounce two-letter vowels, i.e. a combination of two vowels that sound as another vowel, completely different from what we see on the page.
In Greek language there are also combinations of two vowels that produce a vowel + consonant sound. This happens as follows:

Vowel combinations:

Greek Pronounced When followed by
αυ af κ, χ, π, φ, τ, θ, ξ, ψ, σ, τσ
ευ ef κ, χ, π, φ, τ, θ, ξ, ψ, σ, τσ
αυ av vowel
γ, β, δ, λ, ρ, μ, ν, ζ, τζ
ευ ev vowel
γ, β, δ, λ, ρ, μ, ν, ζ, τζ

According to the above table, we will pronounce:

ο ευγενικός (adj.) ο evyenikòs gentle, civil
η αυλή i avlì yard
αύριο (adverb) ávrio tomorrow
o ευνοϊκός (adj.) o evnoïkòs favorable
το πεύκο to péfko pine
το αυτί to aftì ear
αυθαδιάζω (verb) afθaδiázo to show impertinence


2. Declension: Definitive Article

Greek is a highly inflected language. Greek articles and nouns (as well as adjectives and pronouns) are inflected for gender, number and case.


Singular Number

Case Masculine Feminine Neutral
Nominative ο η το
Genitive του της του
Accusative το(ν)* τη(ν)* το

*Note: The final consonant is added when the next word (noun, article, etc) begins with:

(i) a vowel or any kind of vowel combination,

(ii) κ, τ, π,

(iii) a double consonant (μπ, ντ, γκ).


Plural Number

Case Masculine Feminine Neutral
Nominative οι οι τα
Genitive των των των
Accusative τους τις τα


3. Declension: Nouns (Part 1)

The next step is to inflect some nouns.

Greek nouns consist of a word root and an ending denoting the word’s gender, number and case. Thus, we can have:


Singular Plural
Nom. o ήλι-ος οι ήλι-οι
Gen. του ήλι-ου των ήλι-ων
Acc. τον ήλι-ο τους ήλι-ους
Voc. ήλι-ε ήλι-οι


Singular Plural
Nom. η γυναίκ-α οι γυναίκ-ες
Gen. της γυναίκ-ας των γυναικ-ών*
Acc. τη γυναίκ-α τις γυναίκ-ες
Voc. γυναίκ-α γυναίκ-ες

*Note: We see that, in the genitive of plural, the stress moves to the ultimate syllable of the noun. This phenomenon pertains to the general rules governing Word Stress, which we will explore in one of our next lessons.


Singular Plural
Nom. το μωρ-ό τα μωρ-ά
Gen. του μωρ-ού των μωρ-ών
Acc. το μωρ-ό τα μωρ-ά
Voc. μωρ-ό μωρ-ά


4. Auxiliary verb “έχω” (to have)

εγώ έχω (eyo eho) εμείς έχουμε (emis ehoome)
εσύ έχεις (esi ehis) εσείς έχετε (esis ehete)
αυτός έχει (aftos ehi) αυτοί έχουν (afti ehoon)
αυτή έχει (afti ehi) αυτές έχουν (aftes ehoon)
αυτό έχει (afto ehi) αυτά έχουν (afta ehoon)
Up to now, we have learnt
  • the Greek alphabet and its pronunciation (Lesson 1)
  • how to pronounce double letters (Lesson 2) and other letters combinations (this lesson)
  • the numbers 1-10 (Lesson 1)
  • the 3 genders of Greek language (Lesson 2)
  • the definitive article (Lesson 2) and its declension (this lesson)
  • declension of nouns (Part 1, this lesson)
  • auxiliary verbs “to be” (Lesson 2) and “to have” (this lesson).
All these will help us start forming small phrases in Greek from Lesson 4 onwards.
Be sure to go through a thorough revision of these first lessons, for we are going to use them a lot!

Lesson 2: Pronunciation, Genders, Verb “to be”


  • Learn how to read combinations of letters
  • Introduction to grammatical genders
  • Learn the definite article
  • Auxiliary verb είμαι (to be)

Two-letter sounds

In Lesson 1, we learnt the Greek alphabet. One thing you should notice is that Greek is not always pronounced exactly as it is spelled – in other words, you do not always read what you see. Sometimes two letters may form a new sound, which either resembles the original letters or is totally unrelated. Let’s see how this works:

Two-letter vowels:

How it is written How it is pronounced
αι ε, like in e-gg
ι, like in s-i-t
ου [u], like in b-oo-k

Two-letter consonants:

How it is written How it is pronounced
μπ b, like in b-ed
ντ d, like in a-dd
g, like in fi-g

According to the above pronunciation rules,

We see We read
η γυναίκα
i yineka
η εικόνα
(image, icon)
i ikona
το πουλί
to pooli
η μπάλα
i bala
ο άντρας
o andras
η αγκαλιά
i agalia



Greek language has got 3 grammatical genders: masculin, feminine, neutral.

The only thing is, they do not necessarily coincide with the natural gender. Thus, we can have inanimate objects or animals using the masculine (male) or feminine (female) gender, whereas persons might be refered to in the neutral gender. For example:

  • το κορίτσι = girl (neutral)
  • η καρέκλα = chair (feminine)
  • ο ήλιος = sun (masculine)

Also, notice the genders in the above pronunciation table.

In vocabulary study, it is paramount that you learn nouns along with their article, which indicates the gender of the noun. This will help you choose the right forms, pronouns, adjectives, etc.


The Definite Article

Greek Pronounced Gender
ο o masculine
η i feminine
το to neutral

In the next lesson, we shall see how the article is inflected. For now, let’s just learn some vocabulary to help us start forming our first sentences later on.

masculine nouns:

ο πατέρας –> o pateras–> the father

ο ήλιος –> o ilios –> the sun

ο καιρός –> o keros –> the weather

ο άνθρωπος –> o an-θ-ropos –> the human

feminine nouns:

η μητέρα –> i mitera –> the mother

η θάλασσα –> i θ-alassa –> the sea

η καρέκλα –> i karekla–> the chair

η βροχή –> i vrohi –> the rain

neutral nouns:

το παιδί –> to pe-δ-i –> the child

το ξενοδοχείο –> to xeno-δ-ohio –> the hotel

το τραπέζι –> to trapezi –> the table

το φαγητό –> to fayito –> the food

In the above list you also see some double vowels “in action.”


Auxiliary verb “είμαι” (to be)

εγώ είμαι (eyo ime) εμείς είμαστε (emis imaste)
εσύ είσαι (esi ise) εσείς είστε (esis iste)
αυτός είναι (aftos ine) αυτοί είναι (afti ine)
αυτή είναι (afti ine) αυτές είναι (aftes ine)
αυτό είναι (afto ine) αυτά είναι (afta ine)

Are you starting to recognize the double vowels we learnt today?

Are you getting familiar with Greek pronunciation?


In Lesson 3, we shall have a final round of letter combinations, we’ll talk about inflection of nouns and articles, and we’ll learn the auxiliary verb “to have.” All these will help us to start forming our first sentences (Lesson 4).

Lesson 1: Basics of Greek


  • Installing fonts for Greek
  • Learn the alphabet and its pronunciation
  • Learn the numbers
  • Learn some basic everyday phrases/ greetings

First, let’s start by installing Greek fonts so you can read and write them.

I will post a link to a Greek site explaining how to do that on many operating systems

Go here ->

Done? Great! We’re ready to start.


For the first lesson we will start by introducing the Greek alphabet five letters at a time, followed by some numbers!

The trick to learn Greek is to acknowledge that it is a hard and unique language to get used to so try to stay motivated and practice, practice, practice.

Let’s go then:

Letter Letter Name Pronunciation
Α α álfa gum
Β β víta vase
Γ γ yáma yacht
Δ δ δ-élta that
Ε ε épsilon egg


Pronunciation and Transcription Key:

  • We will use the transcription y to render the sound of Γ γ. Pronounce it a bit more strongly.
  • We will use the transcription δ to render the sound of Δ δ.
Letter Letter Name Pronunciation
Ζ ζ zíta zombie
Η η íta tip
Θ θ θ-íτα theatre
Ι ι yióta tip
Κ κ kápa kite

Pronunciation and Transcription Key:

  • We will use the transcription θ to render the sound of Γ γ.
  • Note that H η and Ι ι are pronounced the same. Greek language, actually, has dropped prosody and it has no longer short, long or heavy vowels and accents.


Letter Letter Name Pronunciation
Λ λ lám-δ-a lot
Μ μ aim
Ν ν noun
Ξ ξ ksì box
Ο ο ómikron toll


Letter Letter Name Pronunciation
Π π paper
Ρ ρ ro raw
Σ σ ς sí-γ-ma ace
Τ τ taf attic
Υ υ ípsilon tip

Pronunciation and Transcription Key:

  • Υ υ is pronounced the same as H η and I ι (see table and note above)
  • The letter Σ σ ς has 3 types. The last one (ς) is the final -s, used only at the end of a word. Thus, we have αστείο.
Letter Letter Name Pronunciation
Φ φ fun
Χ χ horse
Ψ ψ psì upset
Ω ω omé-γ-α toll

It sounds complicated but it will be much simpler when you actually hear it spoken.

Stressing: Wherever you see the sign (΄), you know where to stress. Nothing complicated about this one.


For the next part we’ll be focusing on numbers

1 – Ένα éna One
2 – Δύο dío Two
3 – Τρία tría Three
4 – Τέσσερα téssera Four
5 – Πέντε pénde Five
6 – Έξι éxi
7 – Εφτά (επτά) eftà (eptà) Seven
8 – Οκτώ oktò Eight
9 – Εννέα enéa Nine
10 – Δέκα δ-éka Ten


Let’s move on to your first simple phrases!

– Good morning !

– Καλημέρα (kaliméra)

Now let’s introduce ourselves.

– My name is Michael.

– Με λένε Μιχάλη. (Me léne Miháli.)

There is a difference however because it is not a direct translation. In Greek the actual meaning is “They call me Michael / I am called Michael”. This is normal however since in Greek we express ourselves differently than in English. This also has to do with tradition and culture and not only grammar & syntax.


So in this lesson you learned the alphabet, the first 10 numbers and two typical phrases we use when we first meet and greet someone.

I will start a bit slowly since Greek may be a bit too much to understand especially for beginners but with enough practice & dedication we’ll be moving in leaps than just small steps!

My recommendation is to study the Greek letters & their sounds and try to recognize them in the sample sentences and practice as much as you can because it will be difficult for you to progress if you cannot recognize the letters. It’s the big first hurdle when you are speaking, writing and reading a language based on the Latin characters like English!

So see you next week for our next lesson!