Greek Dialectology conference

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International Conference

Perceptions and social uses of the Ancient Greek dialects

University of Oxford, 21–22 September 2023

As newly discovered texts continuously enhance our knowledge of the dialects of Ancient Greece, research on Greek dialectology has long focused on the grammatical description of these regional varieties as autonomous linguistic systems. However, it is cross-linguistically true that the use of dialects is not always determined by geographical factors alone. Although their distribution in space often remains a major conditioning force, dialects may also acquire, or be assigned, social meanings, and speakers may begin to associate specific forms of regional varieties with communicative situations and purposes that are independent of geographical origin and location as such.

Under the title “Perceptions and social uses of the Ancient Greek dialects”, the next conference on Ancient Greek dialectology, to be held in Oxford on 21–22 September 2023, aims to explore such sociolinguistic and socio-pragmatic dimensions of dialect variation in the Greek world.

Conference Programme

Thursday, 21 September 2023

09:15   Welcome and opening remarks

Session I: Poetic dialects and epigraphic poetry

09:30   Sara Kaczko (Roma)

“Doric” and Ionic-epic forms vs. epichoric counterparts in the Attic poetic traditions

10:10   Paloma Guijarro Ruano (Madrid)

Dialect variation, literary languages and unexpected features in Greek epigraphic poetry down to 500 BC

10:50   Coffee / Tea

11:10   Alcorac Alonso Déniz (Lyon)

Local dialects and “literary language(s)” in Classical and Hellenistic inscribed sacred songs:tradition, linguistic adaptation, and transmission

11:50   Dalia Pratali Maffei (Cambridge)

Coan Hellenistic inscribed epigrams: between dialectal regularisation and local influence

12:30   Lunch

Session II: Regional histories of dialect use and variation

13:30   Araceli Striano (Madrid)

Dialect competition: Arcadian as a test case

14:10   Monique Bile (Nancy)

Le dialecte crétois ancien: cadre sociopolitique

14:50   Coffee / Tea

15:10   Guy Vottéro (Nancy)

Le dialecte béotien (8ef/7ed – 2e s.): écologie d’un système

15:50   René Hodot (Nancy)

Le dialecte, la koiné et le latin à Lesbos

Keynote lecture

17:00   Panagiotis Filos (Ioannina)

Koineization across North-West Doric areas: evidence from personal names

Friday 22 September 2023

Session III: When and how to switch to Koine Greek

09:30   Matilde Garré (Paris)

Competing influences and dialectal models in the language of Boeotian proxeny decrees (4th–2nd c. BCE):between Attic, North-West koina, and Ionic-Attic koine

10:10   Florian Réveilhac (Marburg)

Writing to gods and humans: dialect and koine in the Cnidian inscriptions

10:50   Coffee / Tea

11:10   Emilio Crespo (Madrid) & Georgios Giannakis (Thessaloniki)

Koine as a mark of formal interpersonal linguistic communication in the Dodona lead tablets

11:50    Sophie Minon (Paris)

À l’avant-garde de la koinè: les noms de personnes

12:30   Lunch

Session IV: Perceptions and classifications of the Greek dialects in antiquity and beyond

13:30   Anna Novokhatko (Thessaloniki)

κέστραν μὲν ὔμμες ὡττικοὶ κικλήσκετε: perceptions of linguistic divergence in Greek comedy

14:10   Federico Favi (Vercelli)

Unlicensed Greek: the “dialect of Alexandria” as a sociolinguistic category

14:50   Coffee / Tea

15:10   Niels Schoubben (Leiden)

Historical perceptual dialectology meets/needs textual criticism: the Grammaticus Leidensis and Gregory of Corinth on the Aeolic dialect

15:50   Chiara Monaco (Gent)

The Aeolodoric theory: a reflection on the perception of ancient Greek dialects

Keynote lecture

17:00   Olga Tribulato (Venezia)

Sounding Attic in imperial inscriptions

Conference venue

Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles’, Oxford OX1 3LU


The conference is open to the public. Those interested in participating are asked to pre-register by 1 September 2023; to do so, please contact the organisers via e-mail (

To cover the cost of lunch and refreshments, a registration fee of £20.00 will be charged to participants other than speakers as well as student and other members of the University of Oxford.

A limited number of places for the conference dinner with the speakers may be available on a first come, first served basis; the dinner will take place in the evening of Thursday, 21 September 2023 at Worcester College, Oxford. The cost for this will be £65.00; please indicate at the time of registration whether you would like to attend the dinner.

Download the full PDF Programme here

Further information

For further information, please contact the conference organisers:

Professor Philomen Probert (

Professor Andreas Willi (