On This Day January 18, 1982: Monotonic Greek Becomes Official


Greece was in the midst of its first Socialist government under prime minister Andreas Papandreou who implemented numerous changes to “modernize” Greece, including officially doing away with the Greek language’s polytonic system, which included multiple accent marks on Greek words.

The national conversation began amongst linguistics and academics a decade earlier in the mid 1970s and the country’s top university, the National Polytechnic Institute had already done away with polytonic Greek, opting instead for the new, monotonic variation of the language. The Greek parliament officially voted the monotonic variation of written Greek on January 18, 1982.


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