I added a page today giving a brief history of the pronunciation of Α/α.
This is the first in a set of pages I intend to write on issues of pronunciation. These pages will not be linked from the main page of this blog, but will form part of the materials supporting my online grammar. You can find the one on ἄλφα here. It is not intended to be an authoritative source, but a simple explanation for the curious.
While I’m on the topic of Randall Buth’s recent contributions with regard to teaching Greek, I should point out his discussion of Hellenistic pronunciation that relates it directly to the task of teaching and learning Hellenistic Greek: Ἡ Κοινὴ Προφορά (Koine Pronunciation): Notes on the Pronunciation System of Phonemic Koine Greek (PDF).
He does a very nice job of summarizing the state of reconstruction of Greek pronunciation for the Hellenistic period and laying out key assumptions about the criteria a reconstructed pronunciation should meet.
Do any of you know how to get a copy of his Living Koine Greek For Everyone?