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Greek: An Intensive Course [Hardcover]

Hardy Hansen , Gerald M. Quinn
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 15 1992 0823216640 978-0823216642 Second Edition
The first edition of this extremely popular two volume Greek text has been successfully adopted in many high schools and colleges; the organization and approach used by the authors, make it an equally effective tool for those who would enjoy learning the language on their own. The set is designed for a two semester course at the introductory level. This second edition incorporates the authors' improvements and corrections gathered from users' commentary. Those who are currently using the first edition will find this update valuable, those who are seeking a Greek language text will find Greek: An Intensive Course one of the most complete and accessible books on the market.

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Product Description


aThis is a text of such wonderful clarity that it is a delight for both student and instructor.a

About the Author

Hardy Hansen is Professor of Classics at Brooklyn College and at the Latin/Greek Institute of City University of New York. Dr. Gerald M. Quinn was Dean of the College at Lincoln Center, Fordham University.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Use Mastronarde instead July 10 2003
By A Customer
The main problem with this book is the overwhelming size of the units. This not only makes it quite difficult to work through the exercises since you have to digest so much morphology to be able to do them, but it also means that by the end of the book, though you will have a good grasp of syntax and morphology, your working vocabulary will still be quite small. I also found the order in which the grammatical concepts are presented to be somewhat unnatural - the subjunctive and optative are introduced before you have a good feel for the indicative mood and its endings. The verb forms are presented in such quick succession that I ended up not feeling very comfortable with them.
On the plus side, though, the basic concepts morphology and syntax are explained very thoroughly and clearly, and the vocabulary notes (usage notes on each individual word, possible alternative meanings, idiomatic uses, etc.) were quite helpful. There were also plenty of drills and reading sentences for practice. Overall, I'd say this book might be well suited to its original purpose - a workshop setting where all of basic grammar is covered in 6 weeks - but for the general reader it is a bit too dense. For the aspiring self-taught Classicist, I'd recommend Mastronarde. I myself ended up switching over to his book after 10 units of Hansen and Quinn, and find it to be better balanced overall, with shorter, more approachable units, and better organized chapter vocabularies.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent, Not-For-Dummies Greek Course Feb. 1 2003
I picked up this book recently with a friend with the intention of learning Attic Greek. We are both Latin students, and having heard many good things about this book, we decided to try it.
After just a few weeks of work, I can already see the difference between this text and others: this book assumes that the reader is capable of understanding a language vastly more complicated than English. Having a strong background in Latin and an open mind definitely helps, though; I don't suggest using this text if you lack either of these qualities.
However, if you are planning to work alone, this may not be the best option: the title does not lie when it reads "Intensive." I know that working with a friend has helped me so far, and I can only imagine how much help a qualified instructor would be.
After the first few units, I was already finding myself reading and understanding parts of Plato's Republic and other authentic Greek texts.
Either way, I highly recommend this series over the other Greek texts out there, and i hope you pick this one up.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Hansen and the late and sadly missed Quinn put together in the 1970's what is well nigh the only elementary Greek text worth considering. Greek: An Intensive Course covers in 20 units and an appendix what other courses cannot aspire to manage in multiple volumes (e.g., the disgraceful Athenaze series). Hansen and Quinn provide a solid and rigorous foundation in morphology and syntax. Ancient Greek is not supposed to be easy; it is as it is and any attempt to dilute its reality does a disservice to people who actually want to read the classical authors. The only disappointment is that I would have suggested to the authors that space be devoted in the appendix to a discussion of the dialects, especially the Homeric, along with readings of other passages than Attic Greek. The book's readings are perhaps the only weakness in a largely flawless text; there is far too much of an emphasis on Plato and the orators at the expense of historians and tragedians. Most students today will not care to learn so much grammar just to read the Gorgias...without Homer and mythology forget keeping most people's interest today. But for the serious student who does not need to be coaxed into learning her or his lessons, this is the text to use.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Learn Greek May 23 2002
There are two books in Greek language instruction, "Greek: an Intensive Course," and Clyde Pharr's "Homeric Greek." All others are mere pretenders. Classical Greek is not an easy language for the English speaker, and recent attempts to flatten the steepness of the learning curve somehow fail to achieve to critical velocity in my opinion. A sturdy foundation in Greek that will bring a joy lasting a lifetime begins with some dedicated effort, and this book admittedly demands your attention if you want to be successful. Hansen presents the fundamentals of Greek grammar and morphology in a systematic and logical way, building up the foundation on which will stand the demands of more advanced texts.
I do, however, want to stress that this is an intermediate level book, and perhaps should not be the first book one attempts. Its 21 Units cover a great deal of material. Although, no prerequisite knowledge on the part of the reader is assumed by the text, it's explanations are very to the point and concise, which may not be as clear to the novitiate as needs to be. This book does not do any hand-holding to guide the reader through the difficult sections, so to speak. I suggest Clyde Pharr's "Homeric Greek" for the pure beginner, and then this book.
This book will reward you with the effort you put into it.
My only complaint is that it tends to ignore the arts in favor of the philosophy of the Greek culture. I would like to see more Sophocles, Euripides, and other playwrights of the Golden Age of Classical Greece. Language and culture exist together in a symbiosis, and the richness of the language can only be seen in readings from all the major genres, poetry, drama, history, and politics--not just philosophy, and certainly not just one author--namele Plato.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Greek: An Intensive Course is an excellent book for students of classics and any one who want to learn Ancient Greek for academic purpose.
Published 3 months ago by Kambale Nziwa
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Greek textbook
Greek: An intensive course by Hansen and Quinn is the best Greek textbook I've worked with so far. It explains the grammar you need to know up front and in detail, which is very... Read more
Published on June 9 2011 by Fritz
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful resource!
I am currently using this book to learn Greek with a friend. It is VERY helpful and easy to understand. Read more
Published on Feb. 1 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars I don't want to recommend because...
This book seemed to me popular, so I bought.
It was my first book of Greek, so i cannot compare with other books. But there were some problems in it.
1. Read more
Published on Jan. 21 2003 by Park Y J
1.0 out of 5 stars I don't want to recommend because...
Other reveiews are too generous for this book.
This book seemed popular, so I bought.
It was my first book of Greek, so i cannot compare with other books. Read more
Published on Jan. 21 2003 by Park Y J
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Perfect But There's Not Anything Much Better
As complex as Ancient Greek is, trying to organize the key grammatical concepts in an understandable and concise manner is a daunting challenge. Read more
Published on July 16 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Learn Greek
There are two books in Greek language instruction, "Greek: an Intensive Course," and Clyde Pharr's "Homeric Greek." All others are mere pretenders. Read more
Published on May 23 2002 by Patrick Walsh
5.0 out of 5 stars Pragmatic, clear, concise, excellent
I used this book in an extension/evening class at a local college. I quickly got to like and respect it. The book is very pragmatic. It is hard-nosed and hard-headed. Read more
Published on May 13 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Great text
I began my study @ the University of Washington three months ago and have finished half of the Hansen and Quinn text. Read more
Published on Dec 13 2001 by Brendan Haug
3.0 out of 5 stars please someone, write a new Greek textbook
This is by far the best textbook around for teaching Ancient Greek and yet it is terrible. The individual units are far far too big for one lesson and the exercises cannot easily... Read more
Published on Nov. 20 2001
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