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Wild Card in Literal Search


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#1 Juan D. Pinto

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Posted 10 December 2014 - 06:16 PM

I apologize in advance if this has already been asked, I searched the forums but wasn't able to find the answer.

 

What I am attempting to do is simply find all instances when the string יהם appears in the Hebrew Bible. I'm working with DSS fragments and often need to find all instances in which a part of a word (as it shows up in the DSS) is attested. In this specific case, I know יהם is the end of the word, so I figured it would be as simple as searching יהם* but special search characters automatically switch my search to a grammatical search. A grammatical search means I have to know where the word should be split. Certainly I can guess that הם is a pronominal suffix and treat it that way, but I don't know that for sure and would much rather search for the entire string as a whole. Is there a different character that serves as a wild card in literal search? Or is there any other way of performing this type of search?

 

I certainly appreciate the unimaginable amount of work that goes into tagging texts for Accordance, but I sometimes wish there was the option of simply searching a string throughout the entire text without worrying about lemmas, separate words, etc. This applies not only to biblical texts, but also commentaries, grammars, etc. Is there no way to simply treat a tool as say a PDF, and do a full search without deciding if I'm looking for a reference, title, content, section, scripture, etc.?



#2 Ken Simpson

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Posted 10 December 2014 - 11:46 PM

Hi Juan, of course you can! Just surround your string (with wildcard) in quotes

 

“יהם*"

 

and you should find exactly what you are looking for.

 

Re the tool, I don’t think there is a way of searching everything in the tool window, but you can use the research bar to search all English, Greek, Hebrew etc, if you make a group of the tool/s you wish to search, you can then use the research bar to search all sections (language specific)


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#3 Juan D. Pinto

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 01:34 AM

Hi Ken, thank you very much for your prompt response! Unfortunately, it doesn't solve my problem. You see, doing what you suggested automatically switches my search to a grammatical search (I'm assuming because of the wildcard symbol), which means the results are limited to specific "words" that have the entire string "יהם" at the end. It doesn't find instances where a word ending in yod may be followed by the pronominal suffix הם, or where a word ending in יה- may be followed by the pronominal suffix ם.

 

For example, searching "יהם*" returns 7 results. However, when I do a literal search for שניהם I get 70 hits. Searching for עליהם I get 244 literal hits. These are all words that I want to find when I do a literal search for יהם* since they all end with that string.

 

I understand the reason for this: literal searches can search across "word" boundaries, while grammatical searches cannot. So a literal search sees עליהם as a simple string with five characters, where as a grammatical search sees עלי and הם as two separate "words" (technically morphemes). My question is therefore: how can I search for all attestations of a specific string, regardless of morpheme boundaries? Is it really not possible to use a wildcard symbol in a literal search?

 

For this specific case I could certainly do a slightly complicated combination of possible suffixes to find all cases where they appear, but this is a type of search I often have to perform when working with DSS fragments and figure there must be a more straightforward way. This complicated method is often unpractical and unfeasible.


Edited by Juan D. Pinto, 12 December 2014 - 01:38 AM.


#4 Ken Simpson

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 01:56 AM

Ok - you’re right. The new utility that Darin Franklin has developed may do what you want.

 

Check this thread http://www.accordanc...c=14771&p=71215


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#5 Juan D. Pinto

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 02:14 AM

Wow that is one cool app! Interesting that Accordance can't do the most basic type of search imaginable (the type of searching you can do on a PDF) considering how advanced it is in so many regards. Or am I just missing something? Thank you though, this should be enough for now.



#6 Helen Brown

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 10:16 AM

This can be done in Accordance using two expressions. See the screenshot.

 

Attached File  yhm_search.png   379.52KB   7 downloads

 

the second expression is any word ending in yod followed by a suffix hm.


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#7 Juan D. Pinto

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 04:31 PM

Helen, thank you. Though again, I certainly wish there was an easier way to do this. It's simple enough for this example, but that's often not the case in the types of things I have to search, often consisting of only bits and pieces of the beginnings and ends of words (whatever shows up on the DSS fragments I'm working with at the time). Perhaps I'll post something about this in the feature request section of the forums.



#8 Helen Brown

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 05:03 PM

I have passed on the request to allow wildcard searching in the Hebrew literal searching, but it may be a while before it is implemented.


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#9 Martin Zhang

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 05:27 PM

This is just something I wanted two days ago. I searched the help document, only to be disappointed to find out that wild card cannot be used for literal search yet.

 

I suggest the literal search with wild card should also include other signs such as Hebrew vowels.

 

Blessings,

Martin

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#10 Ken Simpson

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 05:38 PM

Hi Martin, remember you can always search for vowels (or cantillations) using the . (search for any character)

 

Yes it should be part of a literal wildcard search too IMHO. 


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#11 Martin Zhang

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 08:41 PM

Hi Ken,

 

I don't quite understand how the . works.

For example, I want to find out a preposition (ב, כ, ל) followed by a certain guttural, in order to examine how often virtual doubling or lengthening happens. How to run a search for that?


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#12 Ken Simpson

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 10:46 PM

Martin, to do that you don’t need the .

 

A guttural consonant can be specified in a wildcard search.

 

e.g.

 

*(עאהחר‏) ‎<FOLLOWED BY>‏ ‎<WITHIN 1 Words?> (בלם)?

 

Should give you what you want.


Edited by Ken Simpson, 12 December 2014 - 10:47 PM.

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#13 Martin Zhang

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 10:54 PM

Thanks, Ken.

 

 

Can I also add vowels? For example, I want to add the vowel pattern for lengthen or virtual doubling.


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#14 Ken Simpson

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 11:01 PM

yes - but for vowels and cantillation you will need the .

 

e.g. ָ .ב except I can’t seem to make it work right now, and as you know I don’t have time to play just at the moment. I am getting results that don’t make sense to me.

 

Will look later. Someone else may chime in.


Edited by Ken Simpson, 12 December 2014 - 11:02 PM.

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