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Add Asterisks to BDAG

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#1 Enoch

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 10:26 PM

The older Bauer-Ardnt-Gingrich Lexicon has asterisks at the end of each word entry whenever it was alleged that the word entry contained either all the NT references to it by way of reference (**) or the entire Bauer-A-G target corpus of literature (*). I think that was the 2nd edition in English; at any rate, it is what was the latest edition in 1963. I was told that later edition(s) omitted the asterisks because they had proven to be unreliable.

However, I still think it would be useful to have those asterisks with the rubric that they are not completely reliable. They would still give you a probable indication of the exhaustiveness of the references under a word's definition. Those asterisks could be borrowed from the 2nd addition and added to the Accordance version of BDAG.

Somehow it seems to me that the 2nd edition of Bauer-A-G was published in the 1950's and would be public domain now.

Of course if someone wanted to be a hero, he could check them all out and make them more accurate. Since there are so many manuscript variations, it probably is impossible actually to say "how many times a lexeme appears in the NT" exactly, without choosing a manuscript or edition of the Greek NT.

Edited by Enoch, 14 July 2012 - 10:30 PM.


#2 Helen Brown

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 04:22 AM

We have invested a huge amount on the clean copy of BDAG that we have. Adding the asterisks from another etext to it would be extremely labor intensive, and not worth our developer's time. We have so many projects on hand, and a backlog despite hiring and training new developers.

And since our text is under copyright, we cannot modify it in this way, even if we wanted to.
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#3 Enoch

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 01:32 PM

Yes, it may not be economical.

Is there a etext to that older edition of Bauer-A-G? I am unaware of it.
I think the Danker revision came out in the 1970's, well before the PC era.

Somehow I doubt that including commentary on what is a copyright text, violates its copyright.
Perhaps it would depend on how it was done in the software.
Right now is it not the software that lights up (in instant details) verses in BDAG?
Is that a copyright violation?
Instant details could have the asterisks.

But indeed it would take time for someone to use the bound version of Bauer-A-G for that purpose.
I suppose one could multiply 10 seconds times each entry. If there are 10,000 entries that would be 100,000 seconds or 278 hours! or 7 weeks. At $10 per hour that would be a cost of $2,780 plus perhaps "tax."

Edited by Enoch, 15 July 2012 - 01:36 PM.


#4 JonathanHuber

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 03:36 PM

I don't see any benefit in unreliable asterisks. You have the range of word meaning even without them, and you would still need to run a search to check for any missing usage if you really needed to find every occurrence.

#5 Enoch

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 03:52 PM

You don't see any benefit in a report of the probable exhaustiveness of the instances listed in the word definition?

#6 JonathanHuber

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 04:27 PM

No, precisely because it is only "probable." If the word occurs a relatively small number of times, I assume that the examples are likely exhaustive. If the word is used frequently, I assume that the examples are likely representative. How do you actually benefit from an asterisk that means "This might be all of the occurrences of this word"?

Edited by JonathanHuber, 15 July 2012 - 04:28 PM.

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#7 Enoch

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 11:12 AM

Actually the statement that the editors originally thought they were giving all the refs would be useful to me, even if I know they might be wrong.

#8 Enoch

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 12:27 AM

I just discovered that the Thayer's Lexicon has asterisks, at least for NT, asterisks claiming to give all the references (concordance for a word).

#9 A. Smith

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 01:04 PM

If you wanted to see every use of a word why not simply search for it in GNT? It would take half a second and be as reliable as possible. You could search all Greek lit you have, in fact, and it would take no more time if you set up a text set (which I know you know. You've been here a long time).
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#10 Enoch

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 10:12 PM

OK Smith. Are you the first of the 4 Smiths of Zechariah (Smith A)? LOL.
I have no idea what a "text set" is.

What I know I have to do is break down & take a month off just to study Accordance once & for all.

But I do find it convenient to see that a Lexicon has all the refs. I am glad that Accordance has that feature with Thayer.

#11 Matthew Burgess

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 08:07 PM

I think the point that Jonathan and others have been reiterating is that, based upon analysis of previous lexicons, it's unlikely that a lexicon lists absolutely every occurrence of a given word even if it claims to do so. Furthermore, given the sophisticated search capabilities of programs such as Accordance, it's quick and painless to construct concordances yourself based upon the critical texts of the present era, rather than those available to Thayer or the earlier editors of BAGD. Danker himself discussed this issue in an essay on his work on the project, when he concluded that "many of the inherited asterisks [in earlier editions of BAGD] were invalid." While Thayer may contain asterisks, the fact remains that it was compiled in the nineteenth century, and many developments in linguistics and lexicography have occurred since that time, as well as changes to the critical texts. I'd much rather have a lexicon that doesn't claim to be exhaustive, but does provide the most current scholarship on the semantic range of its entries.





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