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Anaxandridas ho Skandiates

Transliteration of Ancient Greek into English

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As pointed out in the other thread, transliterations for ancient Greek units displayed are inconsistent or wrong in many places, or represent late medieval/late byzantine pronounciation.

I will just start with one civ and move on day by day as I work myself through it. Seleucids part one:

Thureoporos Polites = Thyreophoros Polites
Pezakontistes Aravikos = Arabikos
Neos = Naos
Bibliothikon = Bibliotheke (or if you insist, bibliothēkē but use of ē and ō for Η and Ω should be consistent and uniform, so team please decide and I can help you fix this!

Antiokhos = Antiochos? I can live with "Kh" for "χ" instead of my suggestion "Ch" for "χ".
But let us settle on a variant and standardize it all.

 

I recommend plain e and o instead of ē and ō, and a permanent "Ch" for "χ". But I am perfectly fine with "Kh" and ē and ō.


ē and ō have an educational and accuracy advantage! but then I must add it in the many places where it is missing. As you like.

(also, the 'successor' Greeks should rather have a 'Basileion' building instead of an 'Agora' - where do I suggest adjustments of actual names? help?)

Edited by Anaxandridas ho Skandiates
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A reference of the Greek transliteration conventions we use would be this commit from me: https://trac.wildfiregames.com/changeset/16666

Since then, the Seleucids were completed, so there could be a new commit in that fashion. But I still haven't gotten around writing a comprehensive document for transliteration for all the ancient languages in the game :( I had started it then, but sadly didn't go further than this commit.

On 1/3/2019 at 10:14 PM, Anaxandridas ho Skandiates said:

also, the 'successor' Greeks should rather have a 'Basileion' building instead of an 'Agora' - where do I suggest adjustments of actual names? help?

Are you comfortable enough with software to propose patches?

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On 1/11/2019 at 10:24 PM, Itms said:

A reference of the Greek transliteration conventions we use would be this commit from me: https://trac.wildfiregames.com/changeset/16666

Since then, the Seleucids were completed, so there could be a new commit in that fashion. But I still haven't gotten around writing a comprehensive document for transliteration for all the ancient languages in the game :( I had started it then, but sadly didn't go further than this commit.

Are you comfortable enough with software to propose patches?

My dear friend, I think that transliteration is not any worse or better than what I proposed. (although the ancients of course used no accents, and I recommend just ê and ô for heta and omega. It would be great to write Greek and Latin words transliterated with Latin capitals at any event.)

Both are fine with me - but the question is, how do we standardize the WHOLE GAME, every Greek word?

The most important thing is, whichever system we use, it is CONSISTENTLY APPLIED. Now different civs have same words spelled differently or have just spelling mistakes. Just little things here and there, as could be expected with such a big enterprise.

 

I cannot at all find my way through your references though. I can only code HTML.
What I can do, is meticulously go through every structure and every unit in all Greek civs, and post the corrections needed here.
But one transliteration-standard must be decided, then I can do the entire lookup work, and maybe you can add to the game?

We need some leading figure to decide on a transliteration-standard, now, so we can do this.

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The purpose of transliteration is to be precise.

  • Transliteration has to be a bijection:
    • if Ζεύς is transliterated Zeús, then υ has to be an u everywhere else as well, and not an y
    • if e and o represent ε and ο, then η and ω shouldn't be written as e and o (ē/ê/ę and ō/ô/ǫ are fine)
  • Accents matter: ὧς and ὡς (Hom ὥς) are two different words
  • Be consistent: φ, χ, θ are the aspirated versions of π, κ, τ, so if κ is transliterated c, then χ ought to be ch, and if κ is transcribed k, then χ ought to be kh
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I agree with you Nescio, except on the υ bullet point: ευ is not ε+υ, it is a single grapheme. So deciding to transliterate this grapheme into eu while transliterating the grapheme υ into y would be possible. Same thing for αυ, ου, ει, etc.

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3 hours ago, Itms said:

I agree with you Nescio, except on the υ bullet point: ευ is not ε+υ, it is a single grapheme. So deciding to transliterate this grapheme into eu while transliterating the grapheme υ into y would be possible. Same thing for αυ, ου, ει, etc.

Not exactly true. A grapheme is the smallest possible unit in a writing system, e.g. a word in a logographic system, a syllable in a syllabary, and a letter in an alphabet (e.g. Greek).

αυ /au̯/ and ευ /eu̯/ were diphthongs (“double sound”), a single syllable consisting of two vowels pronounced together (cf. “cowboy” /ˈkaʊˌbɔɪ/); in contrast, ει /eː/ and ου /oː/ had become monophthongs (“single sound”) in Classical Greek (cf. “voodoo” /ˈvuːduː/). However, none of these has a single character, all are written by two separate letters, thus two graphemes. In contrast, ᾳ, ῃ, and ῳ (initially diphthongs, later monophthongs) are single graphemes (as are e.g. å, æ=ä, ø=ö, and ü).

Although pronunciation matters for one type of transcription (how to convert sounds into signs), it is unimportant for the other type (how to convert one writing system into another).

Edited by Nescio
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Anyway, for the transliteration of Greek, we should discuss and decide upon the following points:

  • Do we want to distinguish between ᾰ, ῐ, ῠ and ᾱ, ῑ, ῡ? (Dictionaries do, text editions don't.)
  • What to do with the iota subscriptum (ὑπογεγραμμένη): ᾳ, ῃ, ῳ? E.g. Θρᾴκη (Thrace)
  • As for the transliteration of η, ω:
    • classicists prefer not to transliterate Greek, because they assume everyone can read it fluently
    • linguists prefer ę, ǫ
    • historians prefer ê, ô
    • Wikipedia prefers ē, ō
  • As for the transliteration of υ and ευ, either u and eu, or y and ey
    • in German and Latin, y represents a sound similar to Greek υ, but u is quite different
    • in English and French, u represents a sound similar to Greek υ, but y is quite different
  • ρ: r or rh?
  • ξ → x, ψ → ps?
  • β, π, φ → b, p, ph; γ, κ, χ →g, k, kh; δ, τ, θ → d, t, th; no objections?

Personally I'd recommend ę/ǫ for η/ω, because ê/ô causes problems with accents, and ē/ō suggests η/ω were simply longer versions of ε/ο, which is not true for Classical Greek, while ę/ǫ makes it clear they're different sounds. Also, I think transcriibing ρ as simply r is fine.

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On 1/15/2019 at 5:10 PM, Nescio said:

The purpose of transliteration is to be precise.

  • Transliteration has to be a bijection:
    • if Ζεύς is transliterated Zeús, then υ has to be an u everywhere else as well, and not an y
    • if e and o represent ε and ο, then η and ω shouldn't be written as e and o (ē/ê/ę and ō/ô/ǫ are fine)
  • Accents matter: ὧς and ὡς (Hom ὥς) are two different words
  • Be consistent: φ, χ, θ are the aspirated versions of π, κ, τ, so if κ is transliterated c, then χ ought to be ch, and if κ is transcribed k, then χ ought to be kh


Anyway, for the transliteration of Greek, we should discuss and decide upon the following points:

  • Do we want to distinguish between ᾰ, ῐ, ῠ and ᾱ, ῑ, ῡ? (Dictionaries do, text editions don't.)
  • What to do with the iota subscriptum (ὑπογεγραμμένη): ᾳ, ῃ, ῳ? E.g. Θρᾴκη (Thrace)
  • As for the transliteration of η, ω:
    • classicists prefer not to transliterate Greek, because they assume everyone can read it fluently
    • linguists prefer ę, ǫ
    • historians prefer ê, ô
    • Wikipedia prefers ē, ō
  • As for the transliteration of υ and ευ, either u and eu, or y and ey
    • in German and Latin, y represents a sound similar to Greek υ, but u is quite different
    • in English and French, u represents a sound similar to Greek υ, but y is quite different
  • ρ: r or rh?
  • ξ → x, ψ → ps?
  • β, π, φ → b, p, ph; γ, κ, χ →g, k, kh; δ, τ, θ → d, t, th; no objections?

Personally I'd recommend ę/ǫ for η/ω, because ê/ô causes problems with accents, and ē/ō suggests η/ω were simply longer versions of ε/ο, which is not true for Classical Greek, while ę/ǫ makes it clear they're different sounds. Also, I think transcriibing ρ as simply r is fine.

Gentlemen, I propose:

e and o represent ε and ο
ē and ō represent η and ω (I also like ę/ǫ better but TBH the lines are easier to see, let's just continue using them)

b-p-ph represent β-π-φ
g-k-kh represent γ-κ-χ
d-t-th represent δ τ θ

rh represents ρ
x represents ξ

ps represents ψ

y represents υ - but the dipthongs are distinguished by consistently using u :

au represents αυ
eu represents ευ
ou represents ου
ai represents ai
ei represents ει
oi represents οι


the only accents are ´ and ` and ^ (acute, grave and circumflex) 
The diacritics will then look something like this: ō̂ ē̂ ḗ  ò í 
ng represents γγ ΦΑΛΑΓΓΕΣ = Phálanges (and so forth: γξ = nx, γχ = nkh, γκ = nk)

iota subscriptum always written out: ai=ᾳ ēi=ῃ, ōi=ῳ

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2 hours ago, wowgetoffyourcellphone said:

I'm no linguist, but for readability I think it would be best to leave out all of the accents and stuff. So, instead of Hoplítēs Athēnaîos (or whatever it's supposed to be), we have Hoplites Athenaios (Athenian Hoplite). 

Unlike in English accents can have a very important role in other languages so I would rather remove the least possible of the transliteration.:victory:

Edited by nani
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32 minutes ago, nani said:

 Unlike in English accents can have a very important role in other languages so I would rather remove the least possible of the transliteration.:victory:

Okay then. :) Can we get an option to just turn off the specific name? Been asking for this for ages (I think it clutters the UI). 

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7 hours ago, nani said:

Unlike in English accents can have a very important role in other languages so I would rather remove the least possible of the transliteration.:victory:

Exactly!

What is currently needed is someone (@Itms?) to make some actual decisions; see earlier posts.

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