Ancient Polytonic vs. Modern Monotic

Modern Greek has a monotonic or "one tone mark" spelling system, but Ancient Greek is spelled with multiple accent marks or in a polytonic accent system.

If you are working with Ancient Greek documents or documents using Polytonic Greek spelling, you may need to access different keyboard utilities and fonts different from those designed for modern Greek or math.

Fonts for Greek

Common Fonts

Many common fonts such as Times New Roman, Helvetica, Comic Sans, Palatinto and many more include monotonic and polytonic Greek support. The way to see these characters is to activate a Greek keyboard utility (see the next section for details).

Additional Greek fonts can be purchased or downloaded, but it’s important that the fonts be properly encoded fonts.

Third Party Fonts

The following fonts are designed to fully support Greek and other ancient languages.

Typing in Greek

This section discusses how to activate either the Polytonic or Modern Greek keyboard utilities in different platforms.

Note: If you have access to the Polytonic keyboard, you can also produce Modern Greek text.

Windows

Character Map

If you only need to insert a few characters, then you can use the Windows Character Map.

Keyboard Utilities

For longer texts, it’s best to activate one of the Microsoft Windows keyboard utilities. Both Modern Greek and Polytonic options are available.

The sites below have additional information specific to Greek

Macintosh (OS X )

Character Viewer/Palette

If you only need to insert a few characters, then you can use the Mac Character Viewer/Palette.

Keyboard Utilities

For longer texts, it’s best to activate one of the Mac Mac keyboard utilities. Both Modern Greek and Polytonic options are available.

The sites below have additional information specific to Greek

Mobile

iOS devices include a Monotonic Greek keyboard, but a user needs to either install a separate keyboard app or use a physical Bluetooth keyboard which has more options.

iOS does include the right fonts to display Polytonic Greek.

Droid

Although there are apps for typing basic Greek letters, full Polytonic Greek display and typing does not appear to be well supported.

Test Sites

If you have your browser configured correctly, the Web sites above should display
the correct characters. If you have difficulties, see list below for font
and browser configuration instructions.

If these sites are not displaying correctly, see the Browser Setup page for set up information.

Web Development

This section presents information specific to Greek. For general information about developing non-English Web sites, see the Encoding Tutorial or the Web Layout sections.

Historical Encodings

Unicode (utf-8) is the required encoding to correctly display Polytonic Greek and also the preferred encoding for Monotonic Greek.

Ancient and Modern Greek: utf-8 (Unicode)

However, the following older encodings for Monotonic Greek may be encountered.

• Older Encodings (Monotonic Only):
• ELOT928
• iso-8859-7 (= ELOT928)
• win-1253

Language Codes

Language Tags allow browsers and other software to process Greek text more efficiently. The major language tags are:

• el (Modern Greek)
• grc (Ancient Greek)

For specialized forms, the following codes are available:

• cpg (Cappadocian Greek)
• pnt (Pontic)
• tsd (Tsakonian)
• yej (Yevanic/Judeo-Greek)
• gmy (Mycenaean Greek)
• xmk (Ancient Macedonian Greek)

Using Unicode Escape Characters

If you wish to input a word or short phrase, you can use Unicode entity codes. See
the Unicode Greek Block Codes page for details.

Typing Greek

GreekKeys 2015 (Mac/Windows) – Utilities for typing characters beyond standard Polytonic Greek