Better for a newby learning Greek: Mounce or Wallace?

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This post has 29 Replies | 2 Followers

Posts 636
Ryan | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Mar 18 2014 10:07 PM

Hello everyone,

I've decided that I'd like to learn Biblical Greek. I already have the Logos Learn Biblical Greek videos which are a start (kind of) and I'll probably do self-study until I can afford a class. Logos March Madness has both Greek Grammar beyond the Basics by Wallace (along with some of his syntax books) and Basics of Biblical Greek by Mounce (along with a few other of his workbooks, readers, etc.) But since I'm just starting out I don't have a clue as to which is better or why. Normally I'd wait, do the research and then buy, but since they're both on sale I thought I'd go for it now.

So I need your help. For those of you who are familiar with Greek and and familiar with these works which would you recommend for me and why?

Many thanks in advance for all your help.

Posts 5320
David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 10:23 PM

The titles pretty much tell it all. You are just starting out, right? One is "The Basics" and the other is "Beyond the Basics". You need Mounce if you are choosing between the two.

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Posts 152
Sam Henderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 10:25 PM

In my experience, the Mounce text (with associated workbook) is used as the basis for two semesters of Greek instruction.The Wallace text is often used as the basis for a semester of intermediate level greek. You wouldn't start with the Wallace.

My advice - save up the money and enrol for a unit of Greek instruction at a Bible college or Seminary.

Posts 149
David A. Peterson | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 10:35 PM

Ryan B:
I'll probably do self-study until I can afford a class.

 

Ryan, Mounce has a website with corresponding pre-lectures, reading assignment, video lecture, and additional resources, like blog entries, vocabulary exercises etc.  I have just purchased the text book and workbook with the March Madness savings, and in conjunction with the favorites and links available, am able to put together a pretty comprehensive "self-study" class, I think it is about 45 dollars to have access to the video lectures, but everything else is free, and works well with the Logos version of the book and workbook.  A google search on Mounce Teknia will help you find it.  Plus the greek font/keyboard map help tremendously.

As a fellow "self-study" Greek student, I encourage you to stick with it, maintain a schedule, and find others who are also trying to go through it as well.  Maybe we could start a Faithlife Greek Study group...

<>< 

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 11:29 PM

I would advise you to read a decent English grammar (language arts not linguistics) to make sure you have your grammar terms down.

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Posts 2589
Lee | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 11:46 PM

I‘d grab both titles now. The sale price is pretty sweet.

Posts 5320
David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 18 2014 11:47 PM

MJ. Smith:

I would advise you to read a decent English grammar (language arts not linguistics) to make sure you have your grammar terms down.

This one can be had for 1c used (plus shipping) and is one of the best.

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Posts 89
Stephen DeKuyper | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 19 2014 5:20 AM

I would definitely go with Mounce as a starter text. It is often used as the textbook for first-year Greek at seminary and Bible college. Wallace is a great grammar, but more helpful as a reference than actually teaching how to read Greek. I also agree that enrolling in a Greek course at a local Bible college or seminary is probably the best. Chances are you'll end up using Mounce anyway.

 

Stephen

Posts 636
Ryan | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 4:00 AM

Thank you every one for your thoughts and advice, I do appreciate them. Eventually I'd like to enroll in a Greek class but right now I'm not in a position or location to do that - thus having to learn it on my own. (I do speak two additional languages besides English so hopefully that grammar knowledge will help.)

Does anyone have any thoughts on if the the Workbook, Reader, Compact Guide or Morphology books would be necessary for my purposes or would the Basics of Biblical Grammar be enough?

A related question: if you were me would you buy these accessory books or spend the money on Wallace's intermediate book if you had to choose one or the other?

Posts 4138
abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 6:38 AM

As an undergrad, I used Mounce. as a graduate we used S.M. Baugh and am told the standard advance is the wallace text.

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Posts 777
David A Egolf | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 9:53 AM

I second the idea of looking for Mounce online.  He has one course based on his book "Greek for the Rest of Us".  This book is intended to teach just enough grammar to be able to use lexicons and other tools which you probably already have in your Logos version.  I bought it as a gentle introduction to the language.

Also, you should try finding an online course by James Voelz of Concordia.  I prefer the teaching style of the online DTS course, but the video continually focused on the instructor and never showed what he was writing on the board.

I also have the original video DVDs from Logos on both Greek and Hebrew.  So far I have only watched a few of Cisnero's presentations and I consider this whole activity something I need to "get around to". 

I was going to ask the following question if you hadn't:

Ryan B:

Does anyone have any thoughts on if the the Workbook, Reader, Compact Guide or Morphology books would be necessary for my purposes or would the Basics of Biblical Grammar be enough?

Posts 1216
Matt Hamrick | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 10:02 AM

Ryan B:

Hello everyone,

I've decided that I'd like to learn Biblical Greek. I already have the Logos Learn Biblical Greek videos which are a start (kind of) and I'll probably do self-study until I can afford a class. Logos March Madness has both Greek Grammar beyond the Basics by Wallace (along with some of his syntax books) and Basics of Biblical Greek by Mounce (along with a few other of his workbooks, readers, etc.) But since I'm just starting out I don't have a clue as to which is better or why. Normally I'd wait, do the research and then buy, but since they're both on sale I thought I'd go for it now.

So I need your help. For those of you who are familiar with Greek and and familiar with these works which would you recommend for me and why?

Many thanks in advance for all your help.

Mounce Basics of Biblical Greek with his workbook and videos can teach you biblical Greek if you are diligent enough to study it and stick with it. Vocab cards you can buy, but it would be better to write out your own. I took official college level Greek courses to learn biblical Greek and we used Mounce grammar, workbook, vocab cards, videos, and the teknia website. We didn't need our professor really, because all he did was teach what Mounce was teaching on the videos. We did need the pressure of timely assignments which kept us honest in being diligent. Once you start, stick with it until you are finished.

Wallace is for more advanced study.

Posts 1216
Matt Hamrick | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 10:05 AM

Ryan B:

Does anyone have any thoughts on if the the Workbook, Reader, Compact Guide or Morphology books would be necessary for my purposes or would the Basics of Biblical Grammar be enough?

A related question: if you were me would you buy these accessory books or spend the money on Wallace's intermediate book if you had to choose one or the other?

If I was you I would buy Mounce Basic's of Biblical Greek grammar, workbook, and videos. The compact guide is great to reference once you are done learning the basics. The key is to be diligent and study it. You will watch the videos over and over until you grasp the concepts.

Posts 2718
mab | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 10:11 AM

MJ. Smith:

I would advise you to read a decent English grammar (language arts not linguistics) to make sure you have your grammar terms down.

Back when I took Greek, the instructor did an overview refresher of basic grammar terms. Most everyone forgets grammar terminology which is so important. You might even want to take a refresher course in English grammar. 

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Posts 4138
abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 3:05 PM

mab:

MJ. Smith:

I would advise you to read a decent English grammar (language arts not linguistics) to make sure you have your grammar terms down.

Back when I took Greek, the instructor did an overview refresher of basic grammar terms. Most everyone forgets grammar terminology which is so important. You might even want to take a refresher course in English grammar. 



Or else be willing to look up things like "subjunctive", "dative", "genetive" etc.

These types of things come up a lot.

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Posts 597
Pam Larson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 20 2014 3:23 PM

Dallas Theological Seminary has a free course on iTunes University in first year Greek that uses the Mounce Basics textbook. You could use that as a free source of lectures to go along with the book. There's enough discussion of English grammar in the textbook that you probably wouldn't need a separate book for English grammar. (I've been going through the lectures as a refresher: NT101 and NT102.)

The workbook would be helpful. It consists of parsing and translation exercises to go along with each chapter in the textbook. There's no answer key for the parsing, but the translations are mostly from the Greek New Testament, and the verse references are given at the end of each chapter.

The reader is intended more for intermediate Greek work - Mounce's Basics textbook recommends it at the end as a way to continue your study.

 

Posts 636
Ryan | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 22 2014 7:47 AM

Thank you to everyone who took the time to respond. I truly appreciate all the insight and advice you shared. I would have been completely lost without your help.

I'm especially thankful to those who shared websites (like the Teknia one and the iTunes university) suggestions. That will be very helpful.

I came into a bit of unexpected money so I ended up going with Wallace (for the future) and Mounce's Basics of Biblical Grammar, workbook, compact guide and the reader (the later two also for the future). Hopefully these resources, combined with your recommended websites and some hard work will have me speaking reading Greek in no time.

David A. Peterson:

Maybe we could start a Faithlife Greek Study group...

<>< 

David if you ever start this Faithlife group I'll be the first to join. I think it's a great idea.

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 22 2014 7:53 AM

MJ. Smith:

I would advise you to read a decent English grammar (language arts not linguistics) to make sure you have your grammar terms down.

MJ has great advice here. It wasn't until I took Greek that I really understood how the English language worked.

Posts 636
Ryan | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 22 2014 7:59 AM

I absolutely agree Bill. But for me personally, having learned two additional languages after English I feel like I'm pretty up to date on my grammar terms. (Even if that doesn't always come across in my typing skills Tongue Tied )

Posts 149
David A. Peterson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 23 2014 5:01 AM

Ryan B:
David if you ever start this Faithlife group I'll be the first to join. I think it's a great idea

 

Ryan, done.  The group is cleverly named "Basics of Biblical Greek" and as soon as your onboard, we can discuss when to start up the class, and try to invite more folks to participate.

In Christ Who Saves,

Dave

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