Jan 8, 2010 David Lang

Amplify to Search for Inflected Forms

In yesterday's post, I showed how you can select some Hebrew text and click the Search button on the Resource palette to have Accordance build the right search syntax for you. I explained that by default, Accordance searches for lexical forms or lemmas—that is, the representative form of the word that appears in most lexicons. When Accordance searches by lexical form, it finds every occurrence of that lexical form no matter how it is inflected. In English, this would be like entering "run" and finding "run," "runs," "ran," "running," etc.

This is incredibly useful, and the kind of search you'll want to do most of the time. (That's why it's the default.) However, there may be times when you just want to search for a particular inflected form rather than all forms of a word. To do that in the search entry box at the top of a Search window you would just enclose the inflected form you want to find in quotation marks. But is there a way to search for inflected forms using the Search button on the Resource palette?

Of course there is! Let's say you're reading Matthew 1:1 in the Greek New Testament and you want to find out more about the word υἱοῦ ("son"). If you select it and simply click the Search button on the Resource palette, a new tab will open and search for that word's lexical form (υἱός). That search returns 377 hits. If you want to search for the specific form υἱοῦ, simply select it and hold down the option key when clicking the Search button on the Resource palette. Holding the option key down tells Accordance to search for inflected forms, and Accordance automatically encloses υἱοῦ in quotes for you. That narrower search returns a mere 36 hits.

As you can see, the Search button becomes even more versatile through the simple use of a modifier key. I'll show you more useful variations in upcoming posts.

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Archived Comments

Michael Pitkowsky

January 08, 2010 11:03 AM

Thanks for this series of very helpful posts on searching.

Helen Brown

January 08, 2010 3:01 PM

Those who prefer to right-click on the word (or control-click) can use the Search For in the contextual menu to pick the lemma or inflected form, or any other goodies David may have up his sleeve. This works for the entire selection, just like clicking the Search button.