Stories We Like: A Guide to the Comma
"It was subtle of God to learn Greek when he wished to become an author -- and not to learn it better." [Nietzsche, "Beyond Good and Evil," 1886]The Turkish name for the country is Yunanistan, lit. "Land of the Ionians," hence Arabic, Hindi Yunan. Greek gift is from "Æneid," II.49: "timeo Danaos et dona ferentes." The Gmc. languages originally borrowed the word with an initial -k- sound (cf. O.H.G. Chrech, Goth. Kreks), which was probably their initial sound closest to the Latin -g- at the time; the word was later refashioned.
Found only in the New Testament, where a distinction is observed between "Greek" and "Grecian" (q.v.). The former is (1) a Greek by race (Acts 16:1-3; 18:17; Rom. 1:14), or (2) a Gentile as opposed to a Jew (Rom. 2:9, 10). The latter, meaning properly "one who speaks Greek," is a foreign Jew opposed to a home Jew who dwelt in Palestine. The word "Grecians" in Acts 11:20 should be "Greeks," denoting the heathen Greeks of that city, as rendered in the Revised Version according to the reading of the best manuscripts ("Hellenes").