Ancient Greek

Ref: C3678743

Have you ever wanted to read the earliest history, philosophy, drama or epic of Europe? Perhaps you would like to read the New Testament in its original language? If so, this course will start you on that journey. Ancient Greek was first written down in its current alphabet in the 8th century BC. It achieved immortality through the literature of Athens, the world's first democracy. After the conquests of Alexander the Great, Greek became the lingua franca of the whole of the eastern Mediterranean world, a status it retained once Alexander's empire was incorporated into the Roman Empire. One consequence of this was the use of Greek in the New Testament. Ancient Greek never died - it simply developed through the ages to become the language spoken in Greece today. Be warned - this course will not help you to have conversations on your Greek holidays (you need a course on modern Greek for that) but you will at least be able to read the station signs before your train has departed!

Course aim

This course will introduce students to the basics of ancient Greek and is suitable for those wishing to learn both classical and New Testament Greek

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit:
  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: and
  • This course is for a group of around 15 students studying in a live video-learning platform conference and an online digital learning environment platform from the comfort of your own home.
  • This course is for improvers
  • This is a continuation of an autumn course & assumes that learners know some ancient Greek. Complete beginners who know some Latin and are ready for a challenge may be able to join the course at this point but need to be ready to do some catching up by themselves. The tutor will be happy to advise!

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • read the Greek alphabet with increased confidence
  • use nouns of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd declensions in ancient Greek
  • use the Greek verb in various tenses, in particular the aorist tense and the present participle
  • use some pronouns and adjectives in ancient Greek
  • read extended passages of simplified Greek which will also introduce some key stories from Greek mythology and history

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit:
  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will be able to keep a record of your progress and achievement using photos, audio, text or documents uploaded into the WEA’s digital learning platform, WEA Canvas.
  • Your tutor will provide written, text and audio feedback recorded in WEA Canvas, WEA’s digital learning platform.
  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit:
  • You will also need access to the internet outside of your sessions. You could do this using a smart phone, tablet, laptop or a desktop computer (at home or through a library etc.).
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit:
  • The textbook for this course is 'Greek to GCSE Part 1' by John Taylor (Blooomsbury Press 2003). This book exists in two editions - the 2nd edition is recommended - but there is very little difference between them and the 1st edition might be available more cheaply.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • You will have access to course resources and links to wider learning through the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas:
  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • If you did not take the autumn course, it is recommended that you try to practise reading and writing the Greek alphabet and work through chapters 1-3 of the textbook. Chapter 4 will be our starting point for this course

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation

Download full course information sheet

Ancient Greek


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2020
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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