Somehow, I managed an extraordinary feat. I got a 96% on a Greek exam (on Aeschylus, no less!), but at the same time was told by the prof that I need to reassess my grasp of the Greek language.
This angry rant will have utterly no relevance to anyone who doesn’t know Greek, or classics in general, probably, but if you are one of the poor saps that has no clue what I am talking about, lament your ignorance and not my angry rant.
I am a Greek major, I spend 48.7% of my time reading Greek, about 36.3% reading Latin and the rest is spent on other miscellaneous homework, eating, sleeping, and my social life *hem hem*. I’d say I’m pretty dedicated.
Sure, maybe I get a Greek and Latin construction confused (there’s no such thing as the “potential subjunctive” in Greek, you know), and there was that thing with the aorist optative of dekomai, which was weird, but hardly the worst problem I could ever have.
I’m pretty sure I read more Greek and Latin than I read English (because my school is awesome like that), so sometimes I go through periods when my grasp of the grammar of ANY of those three languages is vague and erratic. It’s when I get history papers back with “NO PASSIVE VOICE” written all over them that I realize that I have a problem.
Greek is just weird, and complicated, so I can’t really be blamed for knowing it for only about two years and still not being completely solid on every grammatical concept. Learning Greek is one of the hardest things I have yet managed to do (besides learning to play the violin, which is still a lot harder than Greek), and I haven’t even been at it for that long. But with a firm resolve, I yanked those intro Greek books off the shelf and slapped them on the table. I put my nose to the proverbial grindstone for two hours and wrote down every grammar concept I could possibly be uncertain of, then gave up in despair.
At some point today, I’ll start writing my paradigms again, like the good intro student I never was. *sigh*
The worst part is that my rather vague ability to define grammar concepts has not inhibited my ability to read the words and understand what’s going on (unless it’s Aeschylus, then I’m completely snookered about half the time, but that’s a different story).
Oh well. I’ll just continue battling like the mighty warrior I pretend to be. Relearning Greek can’t hurt, I guess.