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Greek Conjunctions and Linking Words

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Linking words are the salt and pepper of every language. Especially in Greek, conjunctions and linking words can be found in almost every sentence.

However, what exactly is a conjunction?

Conjunctions are simply perceived as linking words that aim to connect phrases, actions, or even whole secondary sentences. Each conjunction, however, gives a different meaning to the whole sentence. So, there are different conjunctions to express cause, the time sequence of actions, or even certain conditions.

Good news! This is a pretty easy chapter of the Greek language. So, by studying some examples, you’ll be able to master modern Greek conjunctions.

In this article, we’ll present you with the most popular conjunctions in Greek. This is basically the ultimate guide for learning Greek linking words, enhanced with useful everyday sentences and phrases for context.

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Table of Contents

  1. Greek Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts
  2. Greek Conjunctions to Express Condition
  3. Greek Conjunctions to Express Cause
  4. Greek Conjunctions to Express Opposition
  5. Greek Conjunctions to Express Purpose
  6. Greek Conjunctions to Express the Time Sequence of Actions
  7. Greek Conjunctions to Demonstrate Alternatives
  8. How GreekPod101 Can Help You Master Greek Grammar

1. Greek Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts

1- και (ke) – “and”

Maybe the most popular, useful, and easy Greek conjunction is και (ke), meaning “and.” Its use is exactly the same as that of the English word “and.” So, let’s have a look at the example below.

A Steak on the Grill

  • Greek: Θα ήθελα μία σαλάτα, μία μερίδα τζατζίκι και μία μπριζόλα.
  • Romanization: Tha íthela mía saláta, mía merída jajíki ke mia brizóla.
  • Translation: “I would like a salad, a serving of tzatziki, and a steak.”

Greek tzatziki is a popular sauce made of strained Greek yogurt, chopped garlic, and cucumber. It can be found in every Greek restaurant or taverna.

2. Greek Conjunctions to Express Condition

1- αν / εάν (an / eán) – “if”

  • Greek: Αν / Εάν πάρετε το λεωφορείο, θα είστε εκεί σε 20 λεπτά.
  • Romanization: An / Eán párete to leoforío, tha íste ekí se íkosi leptá.
  • Translation: “If you take the bus, you will be there in 20 minutes.”

2- άμα (áma) – “if”

Athens Metro Wagons

  • Greek: Άμα πάρετε το μετρό, θα είστε εκεί σε 10 λεπτά.
  • Romanization: Áma párete to metró, tha íste ekí se déka leptá.
  • Translation: “If you take the metro, you will be there in 10 minutes.”

Both αν / εάν (An / Eán) and άμα (Áma) can have the same meaning and usage. However, it should be noted that άμα is a bit more informal than the other two.

3. Greek Conjunctions to Express Cause

Sentence Patterns

1- γιατί (yatí) – “because”

  • Greek: Θα αργήσει, γιατί το αεροπλάνο έχει καθυστέρηση.
  • Romanization: Tha aryísi, yatí to aeropláno éhi kathistérisi.
  • Translation: “She will be late, because the aeroplane has been delayed.”

2- επειδή (epidí) – “because”

  • Greek: Θέλω να μάθω ελληνικούς χορούς, επειδή μου αρέσει να χορεύω.
  • Romanization: Thélo na mátho elinikùs horùs, epidí mu arési na horévo.
  • Translation: “I want to learn Greek dances, because I like to dance.”

Again, in this case, both γιατί (yatí) and επειδή (epidí) can be used interchangeably, with exactly the same meaning.

4. Greek Conjunctions to Express Opposition

Improve Listening

Expressing opposition is usually achieved through two sentences, a main sentence and a secondary sentence. These two sentences are normally linked with the use of Greek conjunctions. Here are the most-used conjunctions in Greek for doing so.

1- αλλά (allá) – “but”

  • Greek: Θα έρθω, αλλά θα αργήσω.
  • Romanization: Tha értho, alá tha aryíso.
  • Translation: “I will come, but I will be late.”

2- όμως (ómos) – “but” / “however”

  • Greek: Έφερα καλοκαιρινά ρούχα, όμως κάνει κρύο.
  • Romanization: Éfera kalokeriná rúha, ómos káni krío.
  • Translation: “I brought summer clothes; however, it’s cold.”

3- ωστόσο (ostóso) – “but” / “nevertheless”

  • Greek: Ο καιρός είναι καλός, ωστόσο κάνει λίγο κρύο.
  • Romanization: O kerós íne kalós, ostóso káni lígo krío.
  • Translation:The weather is fine, but it’s a bit cold.”

All of the above conjunctions have the exact same meaning and usage. So, they can be used interchangeably in any of the demonstrated examples.

4- αν και (an ke) – “although”

  • Greek: Σε ευχαριστώ για το δώρο, αν και δεν έπρεπε.
  • Romanization: Se efharistó ya to dóro, an ke den éprepe.
  • Translation: “Thank you for the present, although you didn’t have to (bring any).”

This is a common phrase, used in situations where people bring gifts. For example, it’s common for the host to say this when someone gives him a present for his birthday. Mainly, it’s considered polite to mention that bringing a gift is not mandatory.

5. Greek Conjunctions to Express Purpose

1- ώστε (óste) – “(so) that”

Two Pints of Beer

  • Greek: Βάλε τις μπίρες στο ψυγείο, ώστε να παγώσουν.
  • Romanization: Vále tis bíres sto psiyío, óste na pagósun.
  • Translation: “Put the beers in the fridge, so that they can get chilly.”

2- έτσι ώστε (étsi óste) – “so that”

  • Greek: Κλείσε τα αεροπορικά σου εισιτήρια νωρίς, έτσι ώστε να είναι πιο φθηνά.
  • Romanization: Klíse ta aeroporiká su isitíria norís, étsi óste na íne pio fthiná.
  • Translation: “Book your plane tickets early, so that they’ll be cheaper.”

Both ώστε (óste) and έτσι ώστε (étsi óste) have the same meaning and either one can be used to express purpose, as shown in the examples above.

3- για να (ya na) – “so as to”

  • Greek: Έφυγε νωρίς από τη δουλειά, για να προλάβει το τελευταίο λεωφορείο.
  • Romanization: Éfiye norís apó ti duliá, ya na prolávi to teleftéo leoforío.
  • Translation: “She left work early, so as to catch the last bus.”

6. Greek Conjunctions to Express the Time Sequence of Actions

Improve Listening Part 2

Expressing the sequence of actions is usually achieved through linking two sentences. The glue between these two sentences is, of course, conjunctions. In the following examples, you can learn how to lay out the sequence of various actions, through the use of linking words and phrases.

1- όταν (ótan) – “when”

  • Greek: Πάρε με τηλέφωνο, όταν φτάσεις σπίτι.
  • Romanization: Páre me tiléfono, ótan ftásis spíti.
  • Translation: “Call me when you get home.”

2- ενώ (enó) – “while”

  • Greek: Χτύπησε το τηλέφωνο, ενώ έκανε μπάνιο.
  • Romanization: Htípise to tiléfono, enó ékane bánio.
  • Translation: “The phone rang while she was taking a bath.”

3- καθώς (kathós) – “while”

  • Greek: Καθώς περπατούσα, βρήκα ένα σκυλάκι.
  • Romanization: Κathós perpatúsa, vríka éna skiláki.
  • Translation: “While I was walking, I found a little doggy.”

At this point, we should note that both ενώ and καθώς have the exact same meaning and can be used in the same way in sentences.

4- αφού (afù) – “after”

  • Greek: Το θυμήθηκα, αφού είχες φύγει.
  • Romanization: To thimíthika, afú íhes fíyi.
  • Translation: “I remembered it after you had left.”

5- πριν (prin) – “before”

Acropolis of Athens

  • Greek: Πριν φύγω από την Ελλάδα, θα ήθελα να επισκεφτώ την Ακρόπολη.
  • Romanization: Prin fígo apó tin Eláda, tha íthela na episkeftó tin Akrópoli.
  • Translation: “Before I leave Greece, I would like to visit the Acropolis.”

6- μόλις (mólis) – “just (when)” / “as soon as”

  • Greek: Μόλις έφτασα στο ξενοδοχείο, έκανα ένα μπάνιο.
  • Romanization: Mólis éftasa sto xenodohío, ékana éna bánio.
  • Translation: “As soon as I arrived at the hotel, I took a bath.”

7- ώσπου (óspu) – “until (when)” / “by the time”

  • Greek: Ώσπου να έρθεις, θα έχω μαγειρέψει.
  • Romanization: Óspu na érthis, tha ého mayirépsi.
  • Translation: “By the time you come, I will have cooked.”

7. Greek Conjunctions to Demonstrate Alternatives

1- ή (i) – “or”

A Chef Seasoning a Steak

  • Greek: Μπορείτε να διαλέξετε να φάτε μακαρόνια, σαλάτα ή μπριζόλα.
  • Romanization: Boríte na dialéxete na fáte makarónia, saláta í brizóla.
  • Translation: “You can choose to eat pasta, salad, or steak.”

2- είτε (íte) – “either”

  • Greek: Αυτή η μπλούζα είναι διαθέσιμη είτε σε μαύρο είτε σε άσπρο.
  • Romanization: Aftí i blúza íne diathésimi íte se mávro íte se áspro.
  • Translation: “This T-shirt is available in either black or white.”

Please note that whereas in English we use the phrase as “either….or,” in Greek, it’s common to use είτε….είτε, or είτε….ή, which has exactly the same meaning.

8. How GreekPod101 Can Help You Master Greek Grammar

Which conjunctions do you think you know well now? Which ones will still take a while for you to master? Let us know!

As you should have noticed by now, modern Greek conjunctions and linking words are pretty easy to learn and use. In other languages, there are many different conjunctions used in different situations. But it’s safe to say that in Greek, if the meaning of the phrase seems to be appropriate, then the use of the specific linking word is grammatically correct.

This is definitely a core chapter in learning Greek, as conjunctions can be found in almost every sentence. With enough studying and practice, you’ll be on your way to mastering Greek conjunctions in no time, and we’ll be here for you every step of the way.

At GreekPod101.com, we aim to provide you with everything you need to know about the Greek language in a fun and interesting way. Articles like this one, word lists, grammar tips, and even YouTube videos, are waiting for you to discover them! And if you prefer a one-on-one learning experience, you can use our MyTeacher Messenger before heading over to our online community to discuss lessons with other students.

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