February 9 has been declared international Greek language day in hopes of sparking interest in the language worldwide. The date coincides with Commemoration Day of Greece’s ‘national poet, Dionysios Solomos, whose lyrics are featured in the Greek National Anthem.

This day is expected to highlight the constant contribution of the Greek language to the development of the European and international culture.

In its press release, regarding this year’s celebration, the Ministry of Education writes: “It is important to learn and love the Greek language, because of its virtues but mainly because it has expressed a great culture, that shaped and codified the first and statutory layer of the upper vocabulary and the basic concepts of Western civilization. Over the centuries, its contribution has been decisive as a means of enhancing and spreading Greek culture and today, it is considered as one of the world’s oldest languages”.

The Greek language has a millennial history. It has been a means of communication between different peoples since antiquity, influencing the Western culture. It is distinguished by the accuracy of attributing complex concepts and has therefore enriched other languages ​​with subtle meanings. It has fundamentally contributed to the expression of the terminology of Medicine, Pharmacy, Mathematics, Philosophy and Economics. An example, coming from the field of economics is the successful attempt by the late Xenophon Zolotas, former Prime Minister, when as Governor of the Bank of Greece in 1957 and 1959 delivered speeches in English using exclusively Greek words in the context of the annual summit of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the World Bank.

If you are interested in a head start on the Greek language you can check here.

To celebrate international Greek language day, the Greek Language in Canada Institution invites friends of Greece all over the world to try an online quiz: How ‘s your Greek? A single game for home or the classroom by clicking on this link.


Source: mfa.gr,  greeklanguage.ca