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I've been having trouble typesetting a word-by-word gloss with the first line in polytonic Greek (rendered by polyglossia on XeLaTex with UTF-8 encoding). I've tried this with the covington, gb4e and expex packages and nothing's worked so far; each package results in a different kind of failed output. The closest I've got to the proper typesetting is with covington, so the example below is with this package.

I want to typeset a numbered example containing a gloss with four lines: one with Greek text, one with a transcription in Latin script, one with a morpheme-by-morpheme gloss and finally the unaligned translation. The source is:

% !TEX encoding = UTF-8 Unicode
\documentclass[12pt]{article}
\title{A title}
\author{An author}

 \usepackage{covington}

 \usepackage{fontspec}
 \usepackage{polyglossia}

 \setmainlanguage{english}
 \setotherlanguage[variant=polytonic]{greek}


 \newfontfamily\greekfont{Gentium Plus}

 \begin{document}

 \maketitle

 \section{Preliminaries on the Greek infinitive}

 Some text here. Consider the following:


 \begin{example}
 \xglll \textgreek{οὐ θέλω δὲ ὑμᾶς ἀγνοεῖν, ἀδελφοί, ὅτι πολλάκις προεθέμην ἐλθεῖν} \xgle
 ou thelo: de huma:s agnoein adelphoi hoti polakis proetheme:n elthein \xgle 
 not want.1Sg but you.Acc.Pl be.ignorant.Pres.Inf brothers.Voc that often planned.1Sg come.Aor.Inf \xgle
 \glt `But I don't want you to be unaware, brothers, that many times I   planned to come.' 
 \glend
 \hfill (Rom 1.13)
 \end{example}
\end{document}

This gives:

screenshot of output

The problem persists with shorter examples in Greek, while if I change the first line into Latin script the gloss is typeset fine, regardless of length. As such I've concluded that it might be the case that covington and the Greek script don't get along. Any thoughts?

(I used the xglll macro here, but using plain glll gives the same result).

4

Your code sets the first gloss tier as a single "word", which is why only one word of the other tiers is aligned with it. To fix it you must enclose each aligned word in a separate set of top-level brackets, e.g.

\textgreek{οὐ} \textgreek{θέλω} \textgreek{δὲ} ...

Even with a shorter command name this would get cumbersome, but fortunately you can simply tell gb4e to apply \textgreek to the first tier automatically:

\let\eachwordone=\textgreek
...
\begin{exe}
\ex \glll οὐ θέλω δὲ ὑμᾶς ἀγνοεῖν, ἀδελφοί, ὅτι πολλάκις προεθέμην ἐλθεῖν \\
 ou thelo: de huma:s agnoein adelphoi hoti polakis proetheme:n elthein \\
 not want.1Sg but you.Acc.Pl be.ignorant.Pres.Inf brothers.Voc that often planned.1Sg come.Aor.Inf \\
 \glt `But I don't want you to be unaware, brothers, that many times I   planned to come.' 
\end{exe}

To deal with the quirks of gb4e, you'll need to include it after other packages, or restore the \catcodes it redefines by loading it like this:

\usepackage{gb4e}
\noautomath
0

For the record, with covington (v. 2.0), you would use:

% !TEX encoding = UTF-8 Unicode
\documentclass[12pt]{article}
\title{A title}
\author{An author}

\usepackage{covington}

\usepackage{fontspec}
\usepackage{polyglossia}

\setmainlanguage{english}
\setotherlanguage[variant=polytonic]{greek}

\newfontfamily\greekfont{Gentium Plus}

\begin{document}

\maketitle

\section{Preliminaries on the Greek infinitive}

Some text here. Consider the following:

\trigloss[ex,fsi=\greekfont]
   {οὐ θέλω δὲ ὑμᾶς ἀγνοεῖν, ἀδελφοί, ὅτι πολλάκις προεθέμην ἐλθεῖν}
   {ou thelo: de huma:s agnoein adelphoi hoti polakis proetheme:n elthein}
   {not want.1Sg but you.Acc.Pl be.ignorant.Pres.Inf brothers.Voc that often planned.1Sg come.Aor.Inf}
   {But I don't want you to be unaware, brothers, that many times I   planned to come.} 
 \hfill (Rom 1.13)

\end{document}

Note that \greekfont only switches the font, but you won't need hyphenation in a gloss anyway.

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