A glossary of terms used with Modern Greek entries in this dictionary.
- See also Appendix:Glossary for generally applied terms.
- absolute superlative
- A form of an adjective which expresses an exceptional quality of something without comparing it with anything else. For example:
- Forms of an adjective which allow comparison between one thing and another. As in English they can be produced in two ways:
- Γιώργος είναι νεότερος από το Κωνσταντίνο — "Georgios is younger than Konstantinos."
- Κωνσταντίνος είναι πιο τολμηρός από τον Γιώργο — "Konstantinos is more bold than Georgios."
- For other forms see: positive, relative superlative, absolute superlative & degrees of comparison.
- degree of comparison — βαθμός του επιθέτου
- The forms of an adjective (or adverb) which allow comparison of the nouns described. There are for νέος (“young”), in their simplest forms, the comparative: νεότερος (“younger”) and absolute superlative: νεότατος (“youngest”).
- dependent — εξαρτημένος τύπος
- The dependent form (also known as the perfective non-past or aorist subjunctive) of a verb expresses an action completed within a moment (e.g. "I wrote"), not continuously. It is never used on its own. It follows preverbal particles and other words such as: ας (as), να (na), θα (tha), ίσως (ísos), the negative μην (min) or the auxiliary verb έχω (écho). It may be active, or passive:
- It forms the subjunctive when used with various particles:
- Θέλω να γράψω στη μητέρα μου απόψε. — "I should write to my mother tonight."
- It forms the future simple tense when used in with the particle θα (tha):
- Θα γράψει στη μητέρα του. — "He will write to his mother."
- And it forms the various perfect tenses when used in conjunction with the auxiliary verb έχω (écho, “to have”):
- Έχει γράψει στη μητέρα του. — "He has written to his mother [already]."
- imparisyllabic — ανισοσύλλαβος
- Of a noun whose plural forms have an extra syllable when compared with the singular (eg μεζές → μεζέδες). Compare with #parisyllabic.
- imperfect tense
- The imperfective or progressive past tense of a verb, indicating an action which was continuous, habitual, repeated or lasting a long time. It may be compared with the perfective or simple past.
- parisyllabic — ισοσύλλαβος
- Of a noun whose plural forms have the same number of syllables as the singular (eg θάλασσα → θάλασσες). Compare with #imparisyllabic.
- passive voice
- a verb in the passive voice has a subject which is not the person or thing doing the action, they are usually having the action done to them.
- διδάσκομαι — I am taught
- It should be compared with the active voice where the subject is usually the person doing the action — διδάσκω (“I teach”). Note that deponent verbs conjugate passively but have an active meaning — κάθομαι (“I sit”).
- perfect passive participle (Category:Greek declinable participles)
- A nonfinite verb form used as an adjective. They always end in -μένος, -η, -ο, declining in gender, number and case:
- (feminine singular) η λυμένη ζώνη — "the unbuckled belt"
- (neuter plural) τα λυμένα μαλλιά — "the loosened hair"
- They are used, normally only with transitive verbs, in the formation of perfect tenses in both their active and passive voices:
- (active) Ο Γιάννης είχε λυμένη τη ζώνη του. — "Yanni had unbuckled his belt."
- (passive) Τα μαλλιά της Ελένης ήταν λυμένα. — "Eleni's hair had been loosened."
- relative superlative
- A form of an adjective which equivalent to the English superlative, it allows expression of the highest degree of a quality and is produced by using the definite article with the comparative form:
- Γιώργος είναι ο νεότερος. — "Georgios is the youngest."
- Κωνσταντίνος είναι ο πιο τολμηρός. — "Konstantinos is the most bold, the boldest."
- For other forms see: positive, comparative, absolute superlative & degrees of comparison.
- simple past tense
- The simple or perfective past indicates an action completed at some point in the past. It is also known as the past indefinite, preterite - or, in Greek, as the aorist. It may be compared with the imperfect or imperfective past.
- T-V distinction
- The T-V distinction (from the Latin tu and vos) is found in many languages. When using the second-person to someone in Greek a choice must be made between using the singular or plural form of the verb. The choice made depends upon the relationship between the speaker and the person spoken to.
- The singular form is familiar and informal, used with family, friends, children and younger people:
- The plural is polite and formal, and used with strangers and to give respect: