Distinguished linguistics professors at the University of Athens, Georgios Babiniotis and Christoforos Charalampakis, delve into two words that shaped and echoed throughout Greek consciousness and conversations in 2023.

Babiniotis reflects on ‘marbles,’ referring to the Parthenon sculptures. Originating from the Greek ‘marmaro,’ passing through Latin to French ‘marbre,’ and eventually into English as ‘marble.’ Ultimately, indirectly adopting the Greek word (“μάρμαρο” > “marble”), and directly referencing the Parthenon sculptures, known as the Elgin Marbles, as they were named.

Meanwhile, Charalampakis emphasizes ‘environment.’ Despite dictionaries like Collins highlighting ‘AI’ and Merriam-Webster distinguishing the Greek-derived adjective “authentic” he argues that the word of 2023 and the following decades can’t be any other than ‘environment.’ He urges recognition of the Anthropocene era, warning against human-induced climate change’s imminent threat to our planet and the survival of humanity itself. The pressing need for environmental protection emerges as the paramount concern of the 21st century.