Polytonic Greek

Hexadecimal unicode values for Polytonic Greek

The basic hexadecimal code is listed alpha to omega, but Unicode can also be expressed in decimal numbers as well, as with the breathings etc. below. For information on Unicode check out Allan Wood's site, and for Polytonic Unicode Greek check out The Latin and Greek Study Groups web page.

Lower Case

Add the lead signifying code &# or go to browser "source" for the complete code.

a / alpha in unicode = α - x3b1;

b / beta in unicode = β - x3b2;

g / gama in unicode = γ - x3b3;

d / delta in unicode = δ - x3b4;

e / epsilon in unicode = ε - x3b5;

z / zeta in unicode = ζ - x3b6;

h / eta in unicode = η - x3b7;

q / theta in unicode = θ - x3b8;

i / iota in unicode = ι - x3b9;

k / kapa in unicode = κ - x3ba;

l / lambda in unicode = λ - x3bb;

m / mu in unicode = μ - x3bc;

n / nu in unicode = ν - x3bd;

c / xi in unicode = ξ - x3be;

o / omicron in unicode = ο - x3bf;

p / pi in unicode = π - x3c0;

r / rho in unicode = ρ - x3c1;

s / sigma terminal in unicode = ς - x3c2;

s / sigma within a word in unicode = σ - x3c3;

t / tau in unicode = τ - x3c4;

u / upsilon in unicode = υ - x3c5;

p / phi in unicode = φ - x3c6;

x / chi in unicode = χ - x3c7;

f / psi in unicode = ψ - x3c8;

w / omega in unicode = ω - x3c9;

A ROUGH breathing placed after a vowel = ̔ eg ἡ - 788;

A SMOOTH breathing placed after a vowel = ̓ eg ἠ - 787;

An IOTA SUBSCTIPT placed after a vowel = ͅ eg ῳ - 837;

ACUTE ACCENT placed after the vowel = ́ eg ὅ - 769;

GRAVE ACCENT placed after the vowel = ̀ eg ὂ - 768;

CIRCUMFLEX placed after the vowel = ͂ eg ῶ - 834;

All computers, and most tablets (always check), sold today come with at least one Unicode font that will display Polytonic Greek, ie. Classical / Koine Greek, eg., Arial Unicode MS and Lucida Grande commonly come packaged with both PC and iMac computers. So, as long as the Greek characters on the web page are typed in unicode then the browser will display the text in Greek. Of course, this is a relatively new innovation and so older sites, such as lectionarystudies.com (circa 2,000, using the Gk. font teknia), require the loading of a legacy font to read the Greek text. There were numerous Greek fonts used on the web before unicode, but many had their own particular keyboard layout and so produced Greek gibberish by the browser of a computer missing that particular font. This is why unicode quickly replaced the use of legacy fonts.

Producing a web page with Polytonic Greek text included was originally a difficult task due to the limitations of both computers and text editors. The old method was to copy the unicode code to clips, a code for each letter, breathing, and accent, and insert into the text from the clips. The application "Unicorn" produced by the Latin and Greek Study group, although still employing a cut-and-paste method, is useful for larger text bites.


Today, both modern PC and iMac computers make the task of typing unicode easy, eg., see Polytonic Greek on a Mac. As for typing the actual unicode hexadecimal characters for use in a web page. See Alan Wood's Unicode Resources for all the aids available.


A web page employing Unicode should have the following identification included in the head:

    meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"

For further information on Polytonic Greek go to Teknia.com, in particular, their font page.


[Pumpkin Cottage]