Ionic Greek

The Ionian is a dialect of ancient Greek that was spoken by the tribe of Ionians. The distribution area of the dialect (dark purple on the adjacent map ) comprised the west coast of Asia Minor, the Aegean islands, Euboea, and the Ionian colonies on the Black Sea in southern Italy. Within the ancient Greek dialects, the Ionic is closely related to the Attic dialect.


The art language of Homer connects an archaic form of the Ionian with elements from the Aeolian.

The main agent of ionic literature of the classical period are Herodotus and Hippocrates.


The main differences between the Ionian and Attic, the classic form of ancient Greek:


  • Originally ᾱ long ( ā ) is always η ( ē ). Example: ionic ἱστορίη ( History ) from Attic ἱστορίᾱ ( historia )
  • Other differences in vowel Examples: ionic τρῶμα, ξεῖνος, μοῦνος ( Troma, xeinos, mounos ) against Attic τραῦμα, ξένος, μόνος ( trauma, xenos, monos )
  • σσ (ss) instead of ττ (tt) Example: ionic θάλασσα ( thalassa ) against Attic θάλαττα ( Thalatta )
  • The Proto - Greek labiovelar / kw / is partly to κ (k ) instead of π ( p) Example: ionic ὄκως ( OKOS ) against Attic ὅπως ( HOPOS )
  • Aspiration is omitted in part ( Hauchpsilose ) Examples: ionic ἴκκος, δέκομαι ( Ikkos, dekomai ) against Attic ἵππος, δέχομαι ( hippos, dechomai )
  • Contraction of vowels can be omitted Example: ionic γένεα ( genea ) from Attic γένη (genes)


  • Dative plural of o-and a- declension on - οισι and ῃσι ( Oisi - and -ESI ) instead of - οις and αις ( ois - and - ais ) Examples: ionic θεοῖσι, γνώμῃσι ( theoisi, gnōmēsi ) against Attic θεοῖς, γνώμαις ( theois, gnōmais )
  • Special forms of the personal pronoun of the third person singular in the genitive, dative and accusative: ἕο, οἱ, μιν ( heo, hoi, min)
  • The Augment ( trespassing in front of the verb stem ἐ ) in the aorist and pluperfect is not mandatory (especially Homer ).
  • Partially different verb endings
  • Ancient Greek dialect