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Plato's Republic I: Greek Text with Facing Vocabulary and Commentary Paperback – February 17, 2011
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About the Author
Geoffrey Steadman (Ph.D., Classics) currently teaches Latin and Greek in Knoxville, Tennessee.
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Since this edition is available as a pdf at [...], I'll keep the description brief. Steadman includes what he calls a "core vocabulary" for Republic I: all words occurring more than five times. This core vocabulary is organized first by page, then alphabetically, which means that students can drill the most frequent vocabulary words for each page _before_ they begin reading. All vocabulary words occurring five or fewer times are glossed on upper half of the facing page. The lower half of the facing page contains the commentary, which, as Steadman notes in the front matter, is primarily concerned with grammar rather than culture. In my experience, the commentary covers almost all of the difficulties I had with understanding the text -- from small things like the meaning of particles and interjections to big things like the complicated structure of certain sentences. Every so often -- maybe once every two pages or so -- I consult a translation, but only after doing as much as I can with the Greek text by itself.
I started reading this edition after almost completing the JACT course (Reading Greek: Text and Vocabulary and Reading Greek: Grammar and Exercises), which I used to refresh my memory of my two years of Attic Greek in college. I've found it quite doable. It's hard work -- after all, it's Greek -- but Steadman makes Plato accessible to intermediate students, which is quite an accomplishment. I highly recommend this edition, and Steadman's other commentaries (available at his website above), to students who have completed a good first-year course and wish to expand their reading facility in Greek.
UPDATE: I'm within a few pages of finishing Republic I. I've followed Steadman's advice in rereading each section before starting a new one. I usually read two new pages and reread the previous two. I don't consult a translation the first time through, and even then, only if absolutely necessary. Most of the time, Steadman's commentary is sufficient for me to get the general sense of the text without needing my Loeb, but it's nice to check and make sure I didn't miss something. In the front matter, Steadman says he tried to err on the side of giving too much help rather than too little, and I credit that policy with helping me get through my first extended encounter with Plato. Though Greek will never be easy, I'm much better equipped to read Attic prose than I was before.
I recomended especially because its affordable price.