By: | Post date: June 11, 2023 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Culture, Greece

There is a Hellenic coinage for tennis, antisphaerisis, although you will only ever see it in the name of sports clubs established in the 19th century. Such as the ZAOA, the Zacynthian Sporting League for Antisphaerisis. (Ζακυνθικός αθλητικός όμιλος αντισφαίρισης.) The poster helpfully adds: “Tennis for everybody!”
May be an image of 5 people, people playing tennis and text
I helped translate a Duden-style dictionary of modern terms into Ancient Greek. (Of course I did.)
And in the process of translating it, I noted that while other contemporary sports were well served by Puristic Greek, so archaic terminology was available, tennis wasn’t. So I couldn’t rely on 19th and early 20th century Greek to come up with ancient Greek renderings. I couldn’t even find a new classical word for racket.
Okay, hockey and curling were even less well served by Puristic Greek. But I doubt those games have ever been played in Greece to begin with. We don’t have the weather for it.
I am used to seeing the parks of Australia interrupted by tennis courts. Seeing one here, in a rather dusty outskirt of a provincial Greek town, was a surprise.

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