Saturday, February 04, 2006

When Greek is the international language-an interesting perspective!


This speech was given by the late PM of Greece and acknowledged economist Xenofon Zolotas sometime in the 50’s in front of a Harvard University audience. You will find interesting the fact that nearly all the terms used have been derived originally from the Greek language and are now used internationally! Unique isn’t it?

Kyrie, it is Zeus’ anathema on our epoch and the heresy of our economic method and policies that we should agonize the Skylla of numismatic plethora and the Charibdis of economic anaemia. It is not my idiosyncracy to be ironic or sarcastic but my diagnosis would be that politicians are rather cryptoplethorists. Although they emphatically stigmatize numismatic plethora, they energize it through their tactics and practices. Our policies should be based more on economic and less on political criteria. Our gnomon has to be a metron between economic strategic and philanthropic scopes.

In an epoch characterized by monopolies, oligopolies, monopolistic antagonism and polymorphous inelasticities, our policies have to be more orthological, but this should not be metamorphosed into plethorophobia, which is endemic among academic economists. Numismatic symmetry should not antagonize economic acme. A greater harmonization between the practices of the economic and numismatic archons is basic. Parallel to this we have to synchronize and harmonize more and more our economic and numismatic policies panethnically. These scopes are more practicable now, when the prognostics of the political end economic barometer are halcyonic.

The history of our didymous organization on this sphere has been didactic and their Gnostic practices will always be a tonic to the polyonymous and idiomorphus ethnical economies. The genesis of the programmed organization will dynamize these policies. Therefore, I sympathize, although not without criticism one or two themes with the apostles and the hierarchy of our organs in their zeal to program orthodox economic and numismatic policies. I apologize for having tyrannized you with my Hellenic phraseology. In my epilogue I emphasize my eulogy to the philoxenous autochthons of this cosmopolitan metropolis and my encomium to you Kyrie, the stenographers.

Xenofon Zolotas (1904 – 2004)

(Marialena for copying and commenting)


the_return said...

Το τέχνασμα του Ζολώτα ήταν ιδιοφυές...!

Βέβαια, αν πάει να μιλήσει κάποιος αυτά τα αγγλικά σε έναν αγγλόφωνο, ο δεύτερος δεν θα καταλάβει χριστό, αλλά δεν πειράζει! :-)

Marialena said...

Αγαπητέ μου εκεί ακριβώς έγκειται η ηδονή του πράγματος. Ευτυχώς που υπάρχουν φωτισμένα μυαλά να ανεβάζουν τον πήχη της μετριότητάς μας ψηλότερα! Μ.

the_return said...

"Αγαπητέ μου εκεί ακριβώς έγκειται η ηδονή του πράγματος"

Πολύ σωστό.
Πρόκειται για "elite English".
Όπως βέβαια γνωρίζεις, η σημερινή αγγλική έχει διαμορφωθεί από ένα ετερόκλητο σύνολο λατινικών, ελληνικών, γερμανο-τευτονικών και σκανδιναβικών (και σε κάποιο μικρότερο ποσοστό κελτο-γαλλικών)ριζών και λέξεων.

Εάν τα τρέχοντα αγγλικά αντικαθίσταντο από τα "ζολωτικά" αγγλικά, τότε,
για δεύτερη φορά θα ήταν η ελληνική γλώσσας το διεθνές ιδίωμα όλων των λαών!

Marialena said...

When the fellow English speaking countries refer to their academic foundations, then they'll soon find out where it all began with their civilization. All it takes is an inquiring mind to look deeper into the subject. Dear return thanks for the wishfull thinking-yet pragmatic comment of yours! M.

the_return said...

My pleasure, lady...

betabug said...


it's just a pain to read, that's all. No harm meant to Mr. Zolotas, but terms that are imported from one language to the other are usually less well understood. My flatmate read this piece in her Erasmus Greek course (she is from Germany). It was the one lesson she came home from bored and dissatisfied. Studying classical archeology she often comes across terms that were invented by non-greeks using half-understood greek words. That is poor service to the beautiful greek language, and I would not really count those works as "greek".

With her and my other flatmate (from Russia) we talk Greek at home. That is the real "Greek as an international language".

Always enjoying your writing!


Sascha (betabug)

Marialena said...

Dear betabug, thanx for the comment! I am sure such a way of speaking Greek (which is only academic language by the way), is always a pain in the butt for the foreigners! But as long as you study Greek, you and your friends will understand and discover more and become fascinated from the richness of Greek. My greetings to all of you, hope to hear from you again, Kalimera, Marialena