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bioscien'tific

Romanization of Greek

There are several methods for the romanization of Greek, especially depending whether the language written with Greek letters is Ancient Greek or Modern Greek and whether a phonetic transcription or a graphemic transliteration is intended.

Table

This table lists several transcription schemes from the Greek alphabet to the Latin alphabet.

Greek Ancient Modern
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
ISO BGN/
PCGN
UN/
ELOT
Greeklish
α a a A a a a a
β b b B v v v b, v
γ g g G g g, y1 g g, y
δ d d D d dh, d2 d d
ε e e E e e e e
ζ z z, (dz) Z z z z z
η e ē H í i i h, i
θ th th Q th th th th
ι i i I i i i i
κ c k K k k k k, c
λ l l L l l l l
μ m m M m m m m
ν n n N n n n n, v
ξ x x C x x x ks, x
ο o o O o o o o
π p p P p p p p
ρ r, rh3 r, (rh3) R r r r r
σ s s S s s4 s s
τ t t T t t t t
υ y y, (u) U y i y y
φ ph ph F f f f f, ph
χ ch ch X ch kh ch ch, x, h
ψ ps ps Y ps ps ps ps
ω o ō W ō o o w, o

Vowel digraphs11
Greek Ancient Modern
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
ISO BGN/
PCGN
UN/
ELOT
Greeklish
αι ae, e ai AI ai e ai ai, e
αυ au au AU au av av5, af6 ay, au, af, av
ει i ei EI ei i ei ei, i
ευ eu eu EU eu ev ev5, ef6 ey, eu, ef, ev
ηυ eu ēu HU īy iv iv5, if6 hy, hu, if, iv
οι oe, e oi OI oi i oi oi, i
ου u ou OU ou u ou ou, u, oy
υι ui ui UI yi i yi yi, gi, i

Consonant digraphs
Greek Ancient Modern
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
ISO BGN/
PCGN
UN/
ELOT
Greeklish
γγ ng ng GG gg ng ng gg, gk, ng
γξ nx nx GC gx nx nx gks, gx
γκ nc nk GK gk g7, ng8 gk gk
γχ nch nch GX gch nkh nch nx, nch
μπ mp mp MP mp b7, mb8 b7, mp8 mp, b, mb
ντ nt nt NT nt d7, nd8 nt nt, d, nd

Modifiers (only classical Greek)
Greek Ancient  
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
 
  ̔ h9 h9 ( (spiritus asper, δασεῖα)
  ̓ none none ) (spiritus lenis, ψιλή)
 ͺ i? i? | (iota subscript, ὑπογεγραμμένη)10

Archaic letters
Greek Ancient  
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
 
ϝ w V (digamma)
ϛ st #2 (stigma)
ͱ h9 h9 (heta)
ϻ s, ś #711 (san)
ϸ sh (sho)
ϟ q #3 (qoppa)
ϡ ss #5 (sampi)

Special letter
Greek Ancient  
Clas-
sical
Scien-
tific
Beta
code
 
ȷ j (yot)

Notes:

  1. before αι, ε, ει, η, ι, οι, υ, υι.
  2. between ν and ρ.
  3. with spiritus asper.
  4. sometimes doubled between vowels (ex. Larissa).
  5. before β, γ, δ, ζ, λ, μ, ν, ρ and vowels.
  6. before θ, κ, ξ, π, σ, τ, φ, χ, ψ and at the end of a word.
  7. at the beginning of a word.
  8. in the middle of a word.
  9. on vowel: h before the vowel; on ρ: rh.
  10. under long vowels.
  11. except when there is a diaeresis ( ¨ ) on the second vowel
  12. † The use of 'Greeklish' (here: writing Greek in the Latin alphabet) has risen enormously with the advent of SMSs, email, online chatting, and other digital media, where Greek fonts are not always readily available.

    Examples:

    Θέλω → Thelo
    Ξανά → Ksana or Xana etc
    Ψυχή → Psyhi etc

    Diacritics

    The traditional polytonic orthography of Greek uses several distinct diacritic signs to render what was originally the pitch accent of Ancient Greek, and the presence or absence of word-initial h. In 1982, monotonic orthography was officially introduced for modern Greek. The only diacritics that remain are the acute accent (indicating stress) and the diaeresis (indicating that two consecutive vowels should not be combined). The acute accent and the diaeresis are kept in both the BGN/PCGN and the UN/ELOT romanization systems. There is one exception: in the vowel combinations αυ, ευ and ηυ the accent moves from the υ (that becomes v or f) to the preceding vowel.

    See also

  13. Beta code
  14. Classical compound
  15. English words of Greek origin
  16. List of Latin and Greek words commonly used in systematic names for help with Greek-derived scientific names of organisms
  17. List of Greek words with English derivatives

References

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