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Romanization of Greek is the
transliteration Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a distinctive writing system, based on a repertoire of specific elements or symbols, or that repertoire * Script (styles of h ...

transliteration
(
letter Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) A letter is a segmental symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or word that indicates, signifies, or is understood as representing an idea, Object (philosophy ...

letter
-mapping) or
transcription Transcription refers to the process of producing a copy of something piece by small piece, including: Genetics * Transcription (biology), the copying of DNA into RNA, the first step in gene expression ** Bacterial transcription, the generation ...
(
sound In physics Physics is the that studies , its , its and behavior through , and the related entities of and . "Physical science is that department of knowledge which relates to the order of nature, or, in other words, to the regular ...
-mapping) of text from the
Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alphabet, and was the first alphabetic script in history to have distinct letters for vowels ...

Greek alphabet
into the
Latin alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originally used by the ancient Romans In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived ...

Latin alphabet
.


History

The conventions for
writing Writing is a medium of human communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area arou ...
and romanizing
Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the diale ...
and
Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the dialect The term dialect (from Latin , , from the Ancient Greek word , 'discourse', from , 'through' ...
differ markedly. The sound of the English letter
B
B
() was written as in ancient Greek but is now written as the
digraph Digraph may refer to: * Digraph (orthography), a pair of characters used together to represent a single sound, such as "sh" in English * Orthographic ligature, the joining of two letters as a single glyph, such as "æ" * Digraph (computing), a grou ...
, while the modern sounds like the English letter
V
V
() instead. The
Greek name In the modern world, personal names Image:FML names-2.png, 300px, First/given, middle and last/family/surname with John Fitzgerald Kennedy as example. This shows a structure typical for the Anglosphere, among others. Other cultures use other str ...
became
Johannes Johannes is a Medieval Latin form of the personal name that usually appears as "John (name), John" in English language contexts. It is a variant of the Greek and Classical Latin variants (Ιωάννης, ''Ioannes''), itself derived from the Hebre ...

Johannes
in
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...

Latin
and then
John John is a common English name and surname: * John (given name) John is a common English name and surname: * John (given name) * John (surname), including a list of people who have the name John John may also refer to: New Testament Works ...
in English, but in modern Greek has become ; this might be written as
Yannis Yannis, Yiannis, or Giannis (Γιάννης) is a common Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in South ...
, Jani, Ioannis, Yiannis, or Giannis, but not Giannes or Giannēs as it would be for ancient Greek. The word might variously appear as Hagiοs, Agios, Aghios, or Ayios, or simply be
translated Translation is the communication of the meaning of a source-language text by means of an equivalent target-language text. The English language draws a terminological distinction (which does not exist in every language) between ''transla ...

translated
as "
Holy Sacred describes something that is dedicated or set apart for the service or worship of a deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of English'' defines deity as "a God (male ...

Holy
" or "
Saint In religious belief, a saint is a person who is recognized as having an exceptional degree of Q-D-Š, holiness, likeness, or closeness to God. However, the use of the term ''saint'' depends on the context and Christian denomination, denominatio ...

Saint
" in English forms of Greek placenames. Traditional English renderings of Greek names originated from
Roman Roman or Romans most often refers to: *Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Laz ...
systems established in antiquity. The
Roman alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originally used by the ancient Romans In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived ...

Roman alphabet
itself was a form of the
Cumaean alphabet Many local variants of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alphabet, and was the first alphabetic script in ...
derived from the Euboean script that valued as and as and used variant forms of and that became L and
S
S
. When this script was used to write the classical Greek alphabet, ⟨κ⟩ was replaced with ⟨c⟩, ⟨αι⟩ and ⟨οι⟩ became ⟨æ⟩ and ⟨œ⟩, and ⟨ει⟩ and ⟨ου⟩ were simplified to ⟨i⟩ (more rarely—corresponding to an earlier pronunciation—⟨e⟩) and ⟨u⟩.
Aspirated consonant In phonetics Phonetics is a branch of linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language, meaning that it is a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise study of language. Linguistics encompasses the analysis of ev ...
s like ⟨θ⟩, ⟨φ⟩, initial-⟨ρ⟩, and ⟨χ⟩ simply wrote out the sound: ⟨th⟩, ⟨ph⟩, ⟨rh⟩, and ⟨ch⟩. Because
English orthography English orthography is the system of writing conventions used to represent spoken English in written form that allows readers to connect spelling to sound to meaning. Like the orthography of most world languages, English orthography has a broad ...
has changed so much from the original
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
, modern scholarly transliteration now usually renders ⟨κ⟩ as ⟨k⟩ and the diphthongs ⟨αι, οι, ει, ου⟩ as ⟨ai, oi, ei, ou⟩. " Greeklish" has also spread within
Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, Elláda, ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeastern Europe Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe () is a geographical subregion A subregion is a part of a larger region In geogr ...

Greece
itself, owing to the rapid spread of digital
telephony Telephony ( ) is the field of technology involving the development, application, and deployment of telecommunication services for the purpose of electronic transmission of voice, fax, or data, between distant parties. The history of telephony is i ...
from cultures using the
Latin alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originally used by the ancient Romans In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived ...

Latin alphabet
. Since Greek
typeface A typeface is the design of lettering Lettering is an umbrella term In linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying ...

typeface
s and
font In metal A metal (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approxim ...

font
s are not always supported or robust,
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
email and chatting has adopted a variety of formats for rendering Greek and Greek shorthand using Latin letters. Examples include "8elo" and "thelw" for , "3ava" for , and "yuxi" for . Due to the difficulties encountered in transliterating and transcribing both ancient and modern Greek into the Latin alphabet, a number of regulatory bodies have been established. The
Hellenic Organization for Standardization Hellenic is a synonym for Greek. It means either: *of or pertaining to the Hellenic Republic (modern Greece) or Greek people ( Hellenes, el, Έλληνες) and culture *of or pertaining to ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, He ...
(ELOT), in cooperation with the
International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm Norm, the Norm or NORM may refer to: In academic discipline ...
(ISO), released a system in 1983 which has since been formally adopted by the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
, the United Kingdoms and United States.


Tables

The following tables list several romanization schemes from the Greek alphabet to modern English. Note, however, that the ELOT, UN, and ISO formats for Modern Greek intend themselves as translingual and may be applied in any language using the
Latin alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originally used by the ancient Romans In historiography Historiography is the study of the methods of historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived ...

Latin alphabet
.


Ancient Greek

The
American Library Association The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO), also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operated for a ...
and
Library of Congress The Library of Congress (LC) is the research library A library is a collection of materials, books or media that are easily accessible for use and not just for display purposes. It is responsible for housing updated information in order ...

Library of Congress
romanization scheme employs its "Ancient or Medieval Greek" system for all works and authors up to the
Fall of Constantinople The fall of Constantinople ( grc-x-byzant, Ἅλωσις τῆς Κωνσταντινουπόλεως , translit=Hálōsis tē̂s Kōnstantīnoupóleōs ; tr, İstanbul'un Fethi, lit=Conquest of Istanbul ) was the capture of the capital Cap ...
in 1453, although
Byzantine Greek Medieval Greek (also known as Middle Greek or Byzantine Greek) is the stage of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek ...
was pronounced distinctly and some have considered "Modern" Greek to have begun as early as the 12th century. For treatment of polytonic Greek letters—for example, —see also the section on romanizing Greek diacritical marks below.


Modern Greek

ELOT Eilot ( he, אֵילוֹת, ar, إيلوت) is the southernmost kibbutz A kibbutz ( he, קִבּוּץ / , lit. "gathering, clustering"; plural: kibbutzim / ) is a Intentional community, collective community in Israel that was traditional ...
approved in 1982 the ELOT 743 standard, revised in 2001, whose ''Type 2'' ( el, Τύπος 2, Typos 2) ''
transcription Transcription refers to the process of producing a copy of something piece by small piece, including: Genetics * Transcription (biology), the copying of DNA into RNA, the first step in gene expression ** Bacterial transcription, the generation ...
'' scheme has been adopted by the Greek and Cypriot governments as standard for Romanization of names on
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
and Cypriot passports. It also comprised a ''Type 1'' ( el, Τύπος 1, Typos 1) ''
transliteration Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a distinctive writing system, based on a repertoire of specific elements or symbols, or that repertoire * Script (styles of h ...

transliteration
'' table, which was extensively modified in the second edition of the standard. International versions of ELOT 743, with an English language standard document, were approved by the UN (V/19, 1987) and the British and American governments. The ISO approved in 1997 its version,
ISO 843 ISO 843 is a system for the transliteration Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a distinctive writing system, based on a repertoire of specific elements or symbo ...
, with a different ''Type 1'' transliteration system, which was adopted four years later by ELOT itself, while the U.N. did not update its version. So the ''transcriptions'' of Modern Greek into Latin letters used by ELOT, UN and ISO are essentially equivalent, while there remain minor differences in how they approach reversible ''transliteration''. The
American Library Association The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO), also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operated for a ...
and
Library of Congress The Library of Congress (LC) is the research library A library is a collection of materials, books or media that are easily accessible for use and not just for display purposes. It is responsible for housing updated information in order ...

Library of Congress
romanization scheme employs its "Modern Greek" system for all works and authors following the
Fall of Constantinople The fall of Constantinople ( grc-x-byzant, Ἅλωσις τῆς Κωνσταντινουπόλεως , translit=Hálōsis tē̂s Kōnstantīnoupóleōs ; tr, İstanbul'un Fethi, lit=Conquest of Istanbul ) was the capture of the capital Cap ...
in 1453. In the table below, the special rules for vowel combinations () only apply when these letters function as
digraphs Digraph may refer to: * Digraph (orthography) A digraph or digram (from the el, δίς ', "double" and ', "to write") is a pair of characters used in the orthography An orthography is a set of conventions for writing Writing is a m ...
. There are also words where the same letters stand side by side incidentally but represent separate vowels. In these cases each of the two letters is transcribed separately according to the normal rules for single letters. Such cases are marked in Greek orthography by either having an
accentAccent may refer to: Speech and language * Accent (sociolinguistics), way of pronunciation particular to a speaker or group of speakers * Accent (phonetics), prominence given to a particular syllable in a word, or a word in a phrase ** Pitch accen ...
on the first rather than the second vowel letter, or by having a diaeresis over the second letter. For treatment of
accentsAccent may refer to: Speech and language * Accent (sociolinguistics), way of pronunciation particular to a speaker or group of speakers * Accent (phonetics), prominence given to a particular syllable in a word, or a word in a phrase ** Pitch accen ...
and diaereses—for example, —also see the section on romanizing Greek diacritical marks below.


Diacritical marks

The traditional
polytonic orthography Greek orthographyThe orthography of the Greek language ultimately has its roots in the adoption of the Greek alphabet in the 9th century BC. Some time prior to that, one early form of Greek, Mycenaean language, Mycenaean, was written in Linear ...
of Greek uses several distinct diacritical marks to render what was originally the
pitch accent A pitch-accent language is a language that has word accents in which one syllable in a word or morpheme is more prominent than the others, but the accentuated syllable is indicated by a contrasting pitch Pitch may refer to: Acoustic frequency ...
of Ancient Greek and the presence or absence of word-initial . In 1982,
monotonic orthography Greek orthography has used a variety of diacritics starting in the Hellenistic period. The more complex polytonic orthography ( el, πολυτονικό σύστημα γραφής, translit=polytonikó sýstīma grafīs), which includes five ...
was officially introduced for modern Greek. The only diacritics that remain are the
acute accent The acute accent, , is a diacritic A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph The term glyph is used in typography File:metal movable type.jpg, 225px, Movable type being assembl ...

acute accent
(indicating stress) and the diaeresis (indicating that two consecutive vowels should not be combined). When a Greek
diphthong A diphthong ( ; , ), also known as a gliding vowel, is a combination of two adjacent vowel A vowel is a Syllable, syllabic speech sound pronounced without any stricture in the vocal tract. Vowels are one of the two principal classes of spe ...
is accented, the accent mark is placed over the ''second'' letter of the pair. This means that an accent over the ''first'' letter of the pair indicates vowels which should be taken (and romanized) separately. Although the second vowel is not marked with a superfluous diaeresis in Greek, the first-edition ELOT 743 and the UN systems place a diaeresis on the Latin vowel for the sake of clarity. 'Bámpīs Koutroúlīs'', Babis G. Kutrulisbr>
'Metatropī́ tou ellīnikoú alfavī́tou me latinikoús charaktī́res'' (ELOT 743), "Conversion of the Greek alphabet to Latin characters (ELOT 743)" Accessed 3 Oct 2014. 2008.
Department of Technical Co-operation for Development
"Fifth United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names: Montreal, 18—31 August 1987", "Report of the Conference",
United Nations (New York), 1987.
Apart from the diacritical marks native to Greek itself or used to romanize its characters,
linguists Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo ...

linguists
also regularly mark
vowel length In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most langua ...
with macrons () marking
long vowel In linguistics, vowel length is the perceived length of a vowel sound: the corresponding physical measurement is length (phonetics), duration. In some languages vowel length is an important phonemic factor, meaning vowel length can change the me ...
s and rounded
breve A breve (, less often , neuter form of the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the ...

breve
s () marking
short vowel In linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguistic analysis include ...
s. Where these are romanized, it is common to mark the long vowels with macrons over the Latin letters and to leave the short vowels unmarked; such macrons should not be confused or conflated with those used by some systems to mark
eta Eta (uppercase , lowercase ; grc, ἦτα ''ē̂ta'' or ell, ήτα ''ita'' ) is the seventh letter of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is ...

eta
and
omega Omega (; capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowercase (o ...

omega
as distinct from
epsilon Epsilon (, ; ; uppercase Letter case is the distinction between the letters Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) A letter is a segmental symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or word th ...

epsilon
,
iota Iota (uppercase: Ι, lowercase: ι; ) is the ninth letter of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alpha ...

iota
, and
omicron Omicron (; uppercase Ο, lowercase ο, ) is the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alphab ...

omicron
.


Numerals

Greece's early
Attic numerals File:Aegina Prison Attic Numerals.jpg, Plaque above the main entrance to the orphanage, which later became a prison, on the Greek island of Aegina. The ancient Greek inscription translates as “The Governor erected this orphanage in the year 18 ...
were based on a small sample of letters (including
heta Heta is a conventional name for the historical Greek alphabet letter Eta (Η) and several of its variants, when used in their original function of denoting the consonant . Overview The letter Η had been adopted by Greek from the Phoenician alpha ...

heta
) arranged in multiples of 5 and 10, likely forming the inspiration for the later
Etruscan__NOTOC__ Etruscan may refer to: Ancient civilisation *The Etruscan language, an extinct language in ancient Italy *Something derived from or related to the Etruscan civilization **Etruscan architecture **Etruscan art **Etruscan cities **Etruscan ...
and
Roman numerals Roman numerals are a that originated in and remained the usual way of writing numbers throughout Europe well into the . Numbers in this system are represented by combinations of letters from the . Modern style uses seven symbols, each with a ...
. This early system was replaced by
Greek numerals Greek numerals, also known as Ionic, Ionian, Milesian, or Alexandrian numerals, are a system of writing numbers using the letters of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or ear ...
which employed the entire alphabet, including the nonstandard letters digamma,
stigma Stigma or plural stigmata, stigmas may refer to: * Social stigma, the disapproval of a person based on physical or behavioral characteristics that distinguish them from others Symbolism * Stigmata, bodily marks or wounds resembling the crucifix ...
, or sigma-tau (placed between epsilon and zeta), koppa (placed between pi and rho), and
sampi Sampi (modern: ϡ; ancient shapes: , ) is an archaic letter of the Greek alphabet. It was used as an addition to the classical 24-letter alphabet in some eastern Ionic Greek, Ionic dialects of ancient Greek in the 6th and 5th centuries BC, to de ...
(placed after omega). As revised in 2001, ELOT 743 provides for the uncommon characters to be given (in Greek) as for stigma, for koppa, and / for sampi. These symbols are not given lower-case equivalents. When used as numbers, the letters are used in combination with the upper ''keraia'' numeral sign ⟨ ʹ⟩ to denote numbers from 1 to 900 and in combination with the lower ''keraia'' ⟨ ͵⟩ to denote multiples of 1000. (''For a full table of the signs and their values, see''
Greek numerals Greek numerals, also known as Ionic, Ionian, Milesian, or Alexandrian numerals, are a system of writing numbers using the letters of the Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or ear ...
.) These values are traditionally romanized as
Roman numeral Roman numerals are a numeral system A numeral system (or system of numeration) is a writing system for expressing numbers; that is, a mathematical notation for representing numbers of a given set, using Numerical digit, digits or other s ...
s, so that would be translated as
Alexander III of Macedon Alexander III of Macedon ( grc-gre, Αλέξανδρος}, ; 20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a king (''basileus ''Basileus'' ( el, βασιλεύς) is a Greek term and title A title i ...

Alexander III of Macedon
and transliterated as ''Aléxandros III o Makedṓn'' rather than ''Aléxandros G or ''Aléxandros 3''.
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...

Greek
laws and other official documents of
Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, Elláda, ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeastern Europe Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe () is a geographical subregion A subregion is a part of a larger region In geogr ...

Greece
which employ these numerals, however, are to be formally romanized using "decimal"
Arabic numerals Arabic numerals are the ten numerical digit A numerical digit (often shortened to just digit) is a single symbol used alone (such as "2") or in combinations (such as "25"), to represent numbers in a Positional notation, positional numeral sy ...

Arabic numerals
.


Punctuation marks

Ancient Greek text did not mark word division with spaces or
interpunct An interpunct, , also known as an interpoint, middle dot, middot and centered dot or centred dot, is a punctuation mark consisting of a vertically centered dot used for interword separation in ancient Latin alphabet, Latin script. (Word-separati ...

interpunct
s, instead running the words together (''
scripta continua ''Scriptio continua'' (Latin for "continuous script"), also known as ''scriptura continua'' or ''scripta continua'', is a style of writing without space (punctuation), spaces, or word divider, other marks between the words or sentences. The form ...
''). In the Hellenistic period, a variety of symbols arose for
punctuation Punctuation (or sometimes interpunction) is the use of spacing, conventional signs (called punctuation marks), and certain typographical devices as aids to the understanding and correct reading of written text, whether read silently or aloud. An ...
or editorial marking; such punctuation (or the lack thereof) are variously romanized, inserted, or ignored in different modern editions. Modern
Greek punctuation The orthography of the Greek language ultimately has its roots in the adoption of the Greek alphabet in the 9th century BC. Some time prior to that, one early form of Greek, Mycenaean language, Mycenaean, was written in Linear B, although there was ...
generally follows
French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of co ...
with the notable exception of Greek's use of a separate
question mark The question mark (also known as interrogation point, query, or eroteme in journalism) is a punctuation, punctuation mark that indicates an interrogative clause or phrase in many languages. History Lynne Truss attributes an early form of the ...

question mark
, the '' erotimatiko'', which is shaped like the
Latinate Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languag ...

Latinate
semicolon The semicolon or semi-colon is a symbol commonly used as orthographic punctuation Punctuation (or sometimes interpunction) is the use of spacing, conventional signs (called punctuation marks), and certain typographical devices as aids to ...

semicolon
. Greek punctuation which has been given formal romanizations include:


Uncommon letters

There are many archaic forms and local variants of the
Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alphabet, and was the first alphabetic script in history to have distinct letters for vowels ...

Greek alphabet
.
Beta Beta (, ; uppercase , lowercase , or cursive Cursive (also known as script, among other names) is any style of penmanship Penmanship is the technique of writing Writing is a medium of human communication that involves the represen ...

Beta
, for example, might appear as round Β or pointed throughout Greece but is also found in the forms (at
Gortyn Gortyn, Gortys or Gortyna ( el, Γόρτυν, , or , ) is a Municipalities of Greece, municipality, and an archaeological site, on the Mediterranean Basin, Mediterranean island of Crete away from the island's capital, Heraklion. The seat of the ...

Gortyn
), and (
Thera Santorini ( el, Σαντορίνη, ), officially Thira (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in S ...

Thera
), (
Argos Argos usually refers to: * Argos, Peloponnese Argos (; Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Sou ...

Argos
), (
Melos Milos or Melos (; el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the dialects of the Greek language spoken in the modern era, in ...
), (
Corinth Corinth ( ; el, Κόρινθος, Kórinthos, ) is the successor to an ancient city, and is a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). ...

Corinth
), (Megara and Byzantium), and even (Cyclades). Well into the modern period, classical and medieval Greek was also set using a wide array of Typographic ligature, ligatures, symbols combining or abbreviating various sets of letters, such as those included in Claude Garamond's 16th-century ''grecs du roi''. For the most part, such variants—as and for pi (letter), π, for sigma (letter), σtau (letter), τ, and for —are just silently emended to their standard forms and transliterated accordingly. Letters with no equivalent in the classical Greek alphabet such as
heta Heta is a conventional name for the historical Greek alphabet letter Eta (Η) and several of its variants, when used in their original function of denoting the consonant . Overview The letter Η had been adopted by Greek from the Phoenician alpha ...

heta
( & ), meanwhile, usually take their nearest English equivalent (in this case, h) but are too uncommon to be listed in formal transliteration schemes. Uncommon Greek letters which have been given formal romanizations include:


Standardization

The sounds of
Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the dialect The term dialect (from Latin , , from the Ancient Greek word , 'discourse', from , 'through' ...
have diverged from both those of Ancient Greek and their descendant letters in English and other languages. This led to a variety of romanizations for names and placenames in the 19th and 20th century. The
Hellenic Organization for Standardization Hellenic is a synonym for Greek. It means either: *of or pertaining to the Hellenic Republic (modern Greece) or Greek people ( Hellenes, el, Έλληνες) and culture *of or pertaining to ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, He ...
(ELOT) issued its system in cooperation with the
International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm Norm, the Norm or NORM may refer to: In academic discipline ...
(ISO) in 1983. This system was adopted (with minor modifications) by the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
' Fifth Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names at Montreal in 1987,United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names, Working Group on Romanization Systems. ''Report on the Current Status of United Nations Romanization Systems for Geographical Names:''
Greek
.
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
(New York), 2003. Accessed 6 Oct 2014.
by the United Kingdom's Permanent Committee on Geographical Names for British Official Use (PCGN) and by the United States' United States Board on Geographic Names, Board on Geographic Names (BGN) in 1996, and by the ISO itself in 1997.
International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm Norm, the Norm or NORM may refer to: In academic discipline ...
. "
ISO 843 ISO 843 is a system for the transliteration Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a distinctive writing system, based on a repertoire of specific elements or symbo ...
:1997 (Conversion of Greek characters into Latin characters)". 2010.
Romanization of names for official purposes (as with passports and identity cards) were required to use the ELOT system within Greece until 2011, when a legal decision permitted Greeks to use irregular forms (such as "Demetrios" for ) provided that official identification and documents also list the standard forms (as, for example, "Demetrios OR Dimitrios").Hellenic National Passport Center. Press Releases:
Transliteration of the Passport Holder's Name in Latin
. 12 Feb 2012. Accessed 3 Oct 2014.
Other romanization systems still encountered are the BGN/PCGN's earlier 1962 system and the system employed by the
American Library Association The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO), also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operated for a ...
and the United States'
Library of Congress The Library of Congress (LC) is the research library A library is a collection of materials, books or media that are easily accessible for use and not just for display purposes. It is responsible for housing updated information in order ...

Library of Congress
.


See also

*Classical compound *Cyrillization of Greek *English words of Greek origin *
Greek alphabet The Greek alphabet has been used to write the Greek language since the late ninth or early eighth century BC. It is derived from the earlier Phoenician alphabet, and was the first alphabetic script in history to have distinct letters for vowels ...

Greek alphabet
*List of Latin and Greek words commonly used in systematic names *:wikt:Main page, Wiktionary's articles on :wikt:Wiktionary:Ancient Greek romanization and pronunciation, Ancient Greek romanization and pronunciation, wikt:Appendix:Greek numerals, numerals, :wikt:Appendix:Greek punctuation, punctuation and :wikt:Wiktionary:Greek transliteration, Modern Greek transliteration.


References


External links


ELOT 743 Converter
a free online tool by the Greek government for official purposes using 2nd-edition ELOT transcription
Google Translate
a free online tool providing UN transliteration of Modern Greek. Also comes as application
Transliterate.com
a free online tool providing transliteration of Ancient Greek *
Transliteration of Non-Roman Scripts
', tables in pdf format by Thomas T. Pedersen
Greeklish converter
Greeklish to Greek conversion and Greek transliteration with user-selectable options {{Romanization Romanization of Greek, Greek language Hellenic scripts