x

Politics

Our Everyday Greek: You Already Know: New and Old, Neo- and Paleo-

January 20, 2019
Dimitra Pontoporou

ΝEO- MEANS NEW

The Greek adjective νέος, -α, -ο is the root of many English words that begin with the prefix neo-. Innumerable companies have incorporated the prefix neo- in their brand names, in order to indicate how innovative and new in the market their products are.

English word Greek word   Pronunciation

Neon              το νέον           to NEon

Neolithic        ο νεολιθικός  o neolithiKOS

-lithic              ο λίθος           o LEEthos

Neoclassical ο νεοκλασικός           o neoklasiKOS

Classical       ο κλασικός     o klasiKOS

Neorealism   ο νεορεαλισμός        o neorealisMOS

Realism         ο ρεαλισμός  o realiSMOS

When neon was discovered, in 1898, while studying the composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, it was a new, unexpected element. Therefore, it was given the name neon, new. Neolithic era as opposed to paleolithic (paleo- means old) is the new era, the innovative one, when humans invented agriculture. The ending -lithic comes from the ancient Greek word ο λίθος, which means the stone. This root is also found in English words like litho-graphy (=printing from a stone or a metal plate with smooth surface), litho-tripsy (=the medical procedure involving of breaking hardened masses like kidney stones, bezoars or gallstones.)

The neoclassical style is the one that revived the Greek classical style. Neorealism or structural realism is a theory of international relations that says that power is the most important factor in international relations.

PALEO- MEANS OLD

The Greek word παλιός, which means old, is familiar to you from English words that begin with the prefix paleo-.

English word Greek word   Pronunciation

Paleolithic     ο παλαιολιθικός       o paleolithiKOS

Paleontology η παλαιοντολογία    ee paleontoloYEEa

Paleography η παλαιογραφία       ee paleoyraFEEa

Paleobiology η παλαιοβιολογία     ee paleovioloYEEa

Biology          η βιολογία                 ee violoYEEa

Paleobotany η παλαιοβοτανολογία         ee paleovotanoloYEEa

Botany           η βοτανική                 ee votaniKEE

Paleogeography      η παλαιογεωγραφία ee paleoyeoyraPHEEa

Paleogenetics          η παλαιογενετική      ee paleoyenetiKEE

Genetics        η γενετική      ee yenetiKEE

The ancient Greek adjective ο παλαιός, η παλαιά, το παλαιόν has become in modern Greek ο παλιός, η παλιά, το παλιό. In reference to its root in ancient Greek, the English prefix paleo- is sometimes written as palaeo-.

Paleontology is a composite word from three compounds: paleo+ onto+ logy. Paleo-, παλαιός, means old, and the suffix -logy, which comes from the Greek word ο λόγος, means the study, the science of. The word -onto-, comes from the ancient Greek το ον, του όντος (=of the being), and means the existence, the being. Paleontology is the scientific study of life in past geological periods, mainly known to us from fossil remains. The suffix -graphy comes from the Greek verb γράφω, which means I write (lithography, paleography). Paleontography is the formal description of the relics of paleo beings, of their fossils.

Paleobotany is a science dealing with the plant remains of past geological periods found in fossil form and is a branch of paleobiology, the science that studies forms of life in past geological periods, and their evolution, and of paleogeography, which aims at the reconstruction of the past geological periods’ environments. Paleogenetics is the study of preserved genetic material from the remains of ancient organisms, often extinct.

EXERCISE

Η εποχή (ee epoHEE) is the Greek word for the era, which has been transliterated in English in the word epoch, and η αρχιτεκτονική (ee arhitektoniKEE) is the architecture.

Can you translate into English the Greek phrases below?

Η νεολιθική εποχή =

Η παλαιολιθική εποχή =

Η κλασική εποχή =

Η νεοκλασική εποχή =

Η νεοκλασική αρχιτεκτονική =

PRONUNCIATION KEY

i (idiom), ee (needle), e (energy), o (organism), oo (boot), y (yes), h (helium), th (theory), d (the). The capitalized syllables are accented.

RELATED

An ethnic Greek jailed in Albania after being elected Mayor of the seaside town of Himare said Prime Minister Edi Rama is behind it and controls the courts who sentenced him over the protests of Greece.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Alberto, Season’s First Named Tropical Storm, Dumps Rain on Texas and Mexico, Which Reports 3 Deaths

TAMPICO, Mexico (AP) — Tropical Storm Alberto rumbled toward northeast Mexico early Thursday as the first named storm of the season, carrying heavy rains that left three people dead but also brought hope to a region suffering under a prolonged, severe drought.

MUNICH (AP) — A late strike denied Slovenia a first ever win in a European Championship as Serbia snatched a 1-1 draw on Thursday.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a tax on foreign income over a challenge backed by business and anti-regulatory interests, declining their invitation to weigh in on a broader, never-enacted tax on wealth.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits slipped last week as the U.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.