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Searching for Greek phrases


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#1 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 12:02 PM

Does anyone know if there is a way to search for Greek phrases that occur a given number of times in the New Testament? (this also applies for the OT)

The phrases can be made up of any words, but those exact phrases need to be repeated in sequence more than once in the NT.

For example, I would like to see if there are/how many times there are phrases in Revelation that occur seven times. A good place to start is with the single words that occur only 7 times, but there could be phrases that occur only 7 times that are made up with words that occur more than 7 times individually in Revelation.

I am wondering if these search criteria are to vague. But does anyone know how a search like this might be done (whether search string or construct)?

#2 Joe Weaks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 01:14 PM

Rob,
I couldn't tell whether you knew that there was a [count] command that worked with words.
Set the search criteria to:
[COUNT 7]
And under "More options", create a range for just Revelation and Search within every 'verse' of 'Revelation'.

You'll get the 31 words that occur 7 times in Revelation. Hit Analysis button and then an "Analysis" button to see a nice listing.

However, I do not think there is any way to associate the [COUNT] command with a phrase.
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#3 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 02:06 PM

Rob,
I couldn't tell whether you knew that there was a [count] command that worked with words.
Set the search criteria to:
[COUNT 7]
And under "More options", create a range for just Revelation and Search within every 'verse' of 'Revelation'.

You'll get the 31 words that occur 7 times in Revelation. Hit Analysis button and then an "Analysis" button to see a nice listing.

However, I do not think there is any way to associate the [COUNT] command with a phrase.


Joe,
I am aware of the [Count] command. I had tried to figure out how to associate it to a phrase, but couldn't think of anything. This kind of search may not be possible. But it could be that I am just not creative enough to figure it out.

#4 Helen Brown

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 02:32 PM

You can set up a construct. For example, for a three word phrase you would have six LEX items with an asterisk. You would put a WITHIN between the third and fourth columns with a large number of words (you would need the field search set to Book which is very slow). You add AGREE items for lemma or inflected between the first and fourth, second and fifth, and third and sixth columns. Then select and drag all the items in the fourth to sixth column and their connecting items, and option drag to copy them to create another repeat. Repeat the last instruction as often as you want (say once more for 4 repeats).

Sorry, I cannot make a screenshot right now. Let me know if this is not clear.
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#5 Joe Weaks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 05:47 PM

Here are the screen shots to illustrate what Helen is explaining.
Here's the original creation and see that I'm option dragging the appropriate boxes to copy:
Attached File  Phrase1.tiff   88.74KB   16 downloads
Here's the resulting construct which right now will look for three word phrases occurring twice.
Attached File  Phrase2.tiff   108.02KB   17 downloads

(I couldn't show the third screen shot which displays the results in the text window... I'm out of upload space.

The problem with this approach is that you can't look for two word phrases or three word phrases that ONLY occur 7 times... this makes it still unusable since you get a ton of phrases that occur even dozens of times.
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#6 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 06:28 PM

You can set up a construct. For example, for a three word phrase you would have six LEX items with an asterisk. You would put a WITHIN between the third and fourth columns with a large number of words (you would need the field search set to Book which is very slow). You add AGREE items for lemma or inflected between the first and fourth, second and fifth, and third and sixth columns. Then select and drag all the items in the fourth to sixth column and their connecting items, and option drag to copy them to create another repeat. Repeat the last instruction as often as you want (say once more for 4 repeats).

Sorry, I cannot make a screenshot right now. Let me know if this is not clear.


Helen and Joe,

This is very helpful! Now that the search is explained and illustrated it makes a lot of sense.


So now I am wondering if it is possible to make the search a little more broad. For example:

1. be able to search for two word phrases and three word phrases (and four, five, and six word phrases) all at the same time

2. be able to search for phrases that occur two times and three times (and four, five, and six times) all at the same time

3. be able to search for the phrases not just within one book but within the entire New Testament (where there may be a phrase that occurs once in one book and twice or thrice in another)


Do you think its possible?

#7 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 06:46 PM

The problem with this approach is that you can't look for two word phrases or three word phrases that ONLY occur 7 times... this makes it still unusable since you get a ton of phrases that occur even dozens of times.


Joe, I don't understand your meaning. your phrase 1 search should find all three word phrases that occur 2 times. your phrase 2 search should find all three word phrases that occur 3 times. Although I suppose the number of words in the [Within] element could affect that. When I reduplicated the search of phrase 2 (3 word phrase 3 times), I put 10000 for each [Within] element (searching within 'book' for the book of Revelation) (there are just under 10000 words in Revelation)
...

As I was typing this out I have been going back and forth to Accordance and I think I understand your meaning now. doing the search I just explained finds three word phrases that occur more than three times. Why is that so? I guess the program starts from the beginning of the book and finds a three word phrase that occurs three times and then it works through the entire book that way. As it searches it would end up finding the second time that the first phrase occured and search for the same three word phrase that occurs three times in the rest of the book from that point on and so on and so on.

Is there anyway to narrow this to search for a three word phrase that occurs in a book only three times? Or would I need to do the above search and go through the results and count them? Granted the latter is a lot better than not have any three word phrases highlighted, but it would far better for it to find exactly what I'm looking for.

Edited by RobM, 16 April 2009 - 06:48 PM.


#8 Joe Weaks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 09:52 PM

1. be able to search for two word phrases and three word phrases (and four, five, and six word phrases) all at the same time

Yes, just do a different construct window for each one and then in your search window connect the [Link] commands with <or>'s.

2. be able to search for phrases that occur two times and three times (and four, five, and six times) all at the same time

Yes, same answer.

3. be able to search for the phrases not just within one book but within the entire New Testament (where there may be a phrase that occurs once in one book and twice or thrice in another)

Yes, just change the text range to all text instead of just Revelation. Well, I was thinking about getting results for each book, but as Helen points out, the occurrences will have to be within a single book to register, since the search is looking inside a book (as opposed to verses, sentences, etc.)

Edited by Joe Weaks, 16 April 2009 - 11:19 PM.

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#9 Joe Weaks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 09:56 PM

Joe, I don't understand your meaning. your phrase 1 search should find all three word phrases that occur 2 times...
I think I understand your meaning now...
I guess the program starts from the beginning of the book and finds a three word phrase that occurs three times and then it works through the entire book that way...
Is there anyway to narrow this to search for a three word phrase that occurs in a book only three times?

You're doing a great job of answering your own questions. :)
Without being able to find phrases that occur exactly 2 times or 3 times, the results are close to useless. The problem is less as you increase the number of words you're looking for and a phrase and increase the number of times repeated you're after.
I can not think of a way to search for a phrase that occurs exactly x number of times.
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#10 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 10:50 PM

Yes, just change the text range to all text instead of just Revelation.


So searching for it with "search within 'Book' of '[All text]' would designate the 'Book' as the entire New Testament? Or would it segment out each book of the NT and search with them them individually but display all the results together. Again, the desired results would be, for example, a five word phrases that occurs five times in the New Testament in five different New Testament books.

#11 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 10:53 PM

Yes, just do a different construct window for each one and then in your search window connect the [Link] commands with <or>'s.


Great idea, I don't know why I didn't think of that.

#12 Joe Weaks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 11:14 PM

So searching for it with "search within 'Book' of '[All text]' would designate the 'Book' as the entire New Testament? Or would it segment out each book of the NT and search with them them individually but display all the results together. Again, the desired results would be, for example, a five word phrases that occurs five times in the New Testament in five different New Testament books.

Correct, it would do as you are wanting. Only introducing the [RANGE] command would shift how that works.

Check out the detail page on the COUNT command in the Accordance help files for a good summary.
You can probably find it at
file:///Applications/Accordance%20folder/Accordance.app/Contents/Resources/Accordance%20Help/af/commands-details.html#count
assuming your Accordance app is inside the Accordance folder inside your Applications folder.

Edited by Joe Weaks, 16 April 2009 - 11:20 PM.


#13 Helen Brown

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 11:15 PM

To find phrases that occur 3 times but not 4 you can use the <NOT> command between constructs: [LINK Construct 3] <NOT>[LINK Construct 4] . This eliminates verses which are picked up when there are 4 occurrences. However, Book never means ALL TEXT, so your within is not going to work outside a single book. I cannot see a workaround for this.
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#14 RobM

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 11:29 PM

So, I constructed (and saved!) several construct windows with searches for phrases of various lengths and various frequencies. I decided to try one out and I got an error message. The message said "No more than 15 columns can be used in a construct." I find this odd because there 28 columns in the construct window (and my search for four word phrases that occur seven times filled them all). Can this constriction be lifted some how? I could not find anything in the software preferences.


To find phrases that occur 3 times but not 4 you can use the <NOT> command between constructs: [LINK Construct 3] <NOT>[LINK Construct 4] . This eliminates verses which are picked up when there are 4 occurrences.


Good thinking, will do.

However, Book never means ALL TEXT, so your within is not going to work outside a single book. I cannot see a workaround for this.


So is this something that could be added in the future? i.e., creating a new range that allows all of the books in the New Testament to be as one unit.

Edited by RobM, 16 April 2009 - 11:35 PM.


#15 RobM

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 12:00 PM

I've come across another problem. The search does not find all the hits that it should.

When I searched for 3 word phrases that occur at least 5 times in Revelation, the search did not find phrases like in Rev 2:7 "the one who has ear let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches" which occurs 7 times in Rev. The search should have found this entire phrase as a series of three word phrases all next to each other and mixed with each other (i.e., "o ecwn ous" "ecwn ous akousatw" "ous akousatw ti" etc).




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