Medieval Greek, also known as Byzantine
GreekThere is a pending petition for an ISO639-3 code of
Medieval Greek: gkm SIL is a cover term for all forms of the
Greek language that were spoken and
written during the time of the Byzantine Empire. It is conventionally
dated as beginning some time between the fourth and sixth centuries
and lasting until the mid-fifteenth century.
"Medieval Greek" refers not to a linguistically homogeneous form of
Greek, but a whole spectrum of divergent varieties within the
developing system of Greek diglossia. The
spoken vernacular language developed on the basis of earlier spoken
Koine Greek, and reached a stage that in
many ways resembles present-day Modern
Greek in terms of grammar and phonology by the turn of the
first millennium AD. Written literature reflecting this
demotic Greek begins to appear around 1100. Side by side
with the spoken vernacular, most written Greek maintained
consciously archaic forms. These forms can be further subdivided
into different stylistic registers. They ranged from a moderately
archaic style employed for most every-day writing and based mostly
on the written Koine of the Bible and early Christian literature, to a highly
artificial learned style, employed by authors with higher literary
ambitions and closely imitating the model of classical Attic, in continuation of the movement of
Atticism in late antiquity.
- Andriotis, N. History of the Greek language.
- Tonnet, Henri. Histoire du grec moderne.
- Horrocks, G. Greek: A history of the language and its