Greek and Latin Studies Unit

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Modern Greek

Why study Modern Greek?

Modern Greek is a modern speaking language used in the English vocabulary daily. Is one of the richest, most accurately structured and logical languages of all times. The Greek language has contributed to the English vocabulary 30% of its words; approximately 50.000 of them are borrowed from the Greek directly or indirectly (mainly through Latin & French). Did you know that one out of four words in the English language is Greek or of Greek origin! Therefore one could learn Modern Greek to improve their English! Research has shown that 80% of the vocabulary of the following languages, English, French, Spanish, Italian and German originates from the equivalent Greek. Therefore, it has an ecumenical dimension in knowledge and education in general as the heritage of Greek words includes epistemological concepts in philosophy, anthropology, linguistics, biology, medicine, politics, aesthetics and ethics.

Greek is also a language with great linguistic dynamics. Its linguistic abilities can help to understand how other languages function. The morphological decomposition of Greek roots, prefixes and suffixes will help the learners to learn other languages more easily. By studying the culture, and the Hellenic (Greek) traditions, one will discover the multiple dimensions of cultural continuity within the contexts of other cultural heritages and the way the Hellenic traditions influenced in general the intellectual development worldwide.

Possible Careers include:

Acquired language proficiency in Modern Greek and intercultural awareness skills, open doors to a wide range of employment opportunities; some of the areas and professions are such as, tourism and hospitality, translation & interpretation services, editing, foreign language intelligence analyst, language practitioner & planner, literary specialist, project officer in culturally & linguistically diverse communities, international journalist, airline & travel companies, private sector, government services, foreign affairs, radio & television broadcasting.

Majors and elective modules to combine with Greek as major include:

  • African Languages
  • Afrikaans
  • Anthropology
  • Classical Culture and Mythologies
  • Communication and Media
  • English
  • French
  • Language Practice
  • Linguistics
  • Philosophy
  • Politics and International relations
  • Psychology
  • Religion and/or Sociology

Our department is active and passionate not only about the diffusion of Classical, Byzantine and Modern Greek civilization but also the development of Afro-Hellenic studies and relations with the African continent. Since its initiation the Department of Greek and Latin Studies has had two main aims: first to promote and study the Classical, Byzantine and Modern worlds of Greece and second hand to reinforce Greek relationships with Africa through its research projects and collaboration with African academics, scholars and Institutes. Our department is the only university in Africa which teaches Modern Greek and Byzantine Studies.

Ancient Greek

Learn the language of the Ancient Greeks. Discover the Fabulous world of Troy, the Wanderings of Odysseus, the dark world of Tragic Drama, The​ philosophies of Socarates and Plato and the exciting history of Greece.

Classical Culture and Mythology

This major covers Anthropological, Sociological, and Psychoanalytical Theories of Myth interpretation; the foundation myths of Greek Culture and as well as their relevance, impact and function within Western Culture today; Classical Literature and Philosophy which have had an undeniable impact on the formation of Western literary genres, religious and philosophical thought as well as the influence of Greece and Rome on contemporary art, literature and film


Learning Latin will improve your understanding of English. It is also a help in learning foreign languages, since Italian, Spanish and French are directly descended from Latin and have many features in common with it. Learn about Roman history, art and literature and how these still influence Western civilisation today.​

Modern Greek​

Learn Modern Greek and get to know the culture, literature and history of contemporary Greece. You will not say “it is all Greek to me!” anymore.

Choosing your subjects in your 1st year can be very daunting. Here is some information on 6 subjects you might not have thought of yet.

6 Subjects