Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics

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Negation (Morphology)
(624 words)


Greek has two ʽnegatorsʼ (negative words) ou and mḗ, classified by different scholars as adverbs or particles, and used in statements and directive expressions, respectively. This distinction also holds true for their compounds. Lexical negation is assured, e.g. by the privative prefix a- and dus- and by opposite words without negative affixation.

Greek has two negators, ou and mḗ. The former is used in statements (‘objective negation’), mḗ in directive expressions and wishes (‘subjective’ negation). Mḗ  ‘not’ (< PIE *meh₁) is an …

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Dagmar Muchnová, “Negation (Morphology)”, in: Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics, General Editor: Georgios K. Giannakis. Consulted online on 23 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2214-448X_eagll_COM_00000246>
First published online: 2013

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