Bibliography of Reference Tools for Biblical Hebrew
Works in the Graham Library are marked with an asterisk*
1. General Works
*Danker, Frederick W. Multipurpose Tools for Bible Study. Revised and expanded ed. Philadelphia, PA: Fortress, 1993. BS 511.2 .D355 1993 TRIF/WYC.
This volume included insightful comments on many of the standard tools in Biblical studies. A good source to get an overview on what is of value in the field.
*Waldman, Nahum. The Recent Study of Hebrew: A Survey of the Literature with Selected Bibliography. Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 1989. Z 7070 .W34 1989 TRIF/WYC; copies also in SMC, ROBA.
An excellent jumping-off point for studying most things related to Hebrew. Includes a bibliography of almost 200 pages.
*Green, J. (ed and trans.). The Interlinear Bible: Hebrew, Greek, English: With Strong Concordance Numbers Above Each Word. 2nd ed. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1986. BS 3.5 1986 TRIN/WYC.
*Kohlenberger III, J.R. (ed.). The NIV Interlinear Hebrew-English Old Testament. 4 vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1979-85. BS 715 1987; copies also at KNOX, SMC.
Now available in a single volume.
*Torah, Nevi'im u-Ketubim: Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia. Ed by R. Kittel, A. Alt, O. Eissfeldt and P. Kahle. Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelstiftung, 1977. BS 715 1977 TRINSTOR v.1-15.
Widely referred to as BHS, it is based on the Leningrad Codex (a facsimile copy of which is in the Graham Library at BT 15.5 L46) and is the standard text for academic work. The proposed emendations found in the apparatus are often arbitrary and so should be treated with some caution. An explanation of the symbols and Latin abbreviations may be found in Scott (1987) or Wonneberger (1990). It is now available from the same publisher in a smaller, more durable format.
3. Guides to Texts
*Scott, W. R. A Simplified Guide to BHS: Critical Apparatus, Masora, Accents, Unusual Letters and Other Markings. Berkeley, CA: Bibal Press, 1987. BS 715 1987 TRIN/WYC. Second edition at SMC, VUEM.
A concise and affordable guide to the abbreviations and apparatus in BHS.
*Wonneberger, R. Understanding BHS: A Manual for the Users of Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia. Subsidia Biblica. Vol. 8. 2nd ed. Translated by D.R. Daniels. Rome: Editrice Pontifico Istituto Biblico, 1990. BS 715 1990 TRIF/WYC; copies also at SMC.
More detailed than Scott. Included indices and a helpful section evaluating strengths and weaknesses of BHS.
*Yeivin, Israel. Introduction to the Tiberian Masorah. Translated and edited by E.J. Revell. Missoula, MT: Scholars Press, 1980. BS 718 .Y4413I5 TRIN/WYCSTOR; copies also at VUEM, KNOX.
Provides a detailed introduction to the system of cantillation in the Masoretic Text, information almost always lacking or inadequate in BH grammars.
4. Text-critical Reference Works
*Brotzman, E.R. Old Testament Textual Criticism: A Practical Introduction. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1994. BS 1136 .B765 1994 TRIN/WYC.
Brief and affordable. Includes section on the transmission of the Hebrew text and the versions.
*McCarter Jr., P.K. Textual Criticism: Recovering the Text of the Hebrew Bible. Guides to Biblical Scholarship. Old Testament Guides. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1986. BS 1136 .M23 1986 TRIN; copies also VUEM.
Brief. Includes helpful glossary. Tends to emphasize the importance of the LXX.
*Tov, E. Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press.2 nd ed., 2001. BS 1136 .T6813 2001 TRIN/WYC; copies also at VUEM, REGC.
The most important comprehensive treatment in English. Emphasizes contribution of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
*Weingreen, J. Introduction to the Critical Study of the Text of the Hebrew Bible. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982. BS 1136 W34 1982 TRIN/WYC STOR; copy also at ROBA.
*Evan-Shoshan, A. (ed.). A New Concordance of the Torah, Nebi'im and Ketubim: Thesaurus of the Language of the Bible, Hebrew and Aramaic Roots Words, Proper Names, Phrases and Synonyms. Jerusalem: Kiryat Sefer, 1983. BS 1121 .E93 1983 TRIF/WYC; copy also at KNOX.
A valuable tool. Lists every root and form in the Hebrew Bible. Book, chapter and verse references are in Hebrew. An English-language format from Baker is entitled, A New Concordance of the Old Testament.
*Wigram, G.V. (ed.). The New Englishman's Hebrew-Aramaic Concordance. Coded to the Strong's Concordance Numbering System. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1984. BS 1125 .W5 1984 TRIF/WYC; copy also at STAS.
Lisowski, G. Konkordanz zum hebraischen Alten Testament, nach dem von Paul Kahle in der Biblia Hebraica edidit Rudolf Kittel besorgten Masorertischen Text. Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 1993. BS 1121 .L55 1993X ROBA.
Brown, F., S.R. Driver & C.A. Briggs (ed.), A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament with an Appendix Containing the Biblical Aramaic. Corrected ed. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1952. (Graham has the 1860 and 1907 eds. PJ 4833 .G4 TRINSTOR; there are many editions at other TST libraries).
Known by the abbreviation BDB. For years the standard lexicon in English. Features the text of the 1907 edition with an appendix of corrections. Arranged according to root. Includes etymological information from Arabic, Syraic, Aramaic, etc. Published before the Ugaritic material became available.
*Brown, F., S.R. Driver & C.A. Briggs (ed.), The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew and English Lexicon, with an Appendix Containing the Biblical Aramaic. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1979. PJ 4833 .B67 1979 TRIF/WYC.
Based on the 1907 edition with the addition of an index containing the Strong's numbering system. An affordable alternative to the Oxford University Press edition.
*Clines, D.J.A., P.R. Davies & J.W. Rogerson (ed.), The Dictionary of Classical Hebrew., 5 vols., Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1993-2001. PJ 4833 .D53 1993 TRIF/WYC 1-5; also at KNOX.
This most recent and thorough lexicon in English covers classical Hebrew down to 200 AD. It includes much non-Biblical material, but does not, unfortunately, list etymologies. Volumes 2 and 3 are less ambitious in scope that volume 1.
*Davidson, B. The Analytical Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon. London: Samuel Bagster and Sons, 1956. PJ 4833 .D3 1956 TRIN/WYC; PJ 4833 .D3 1972 TRIF. Many other copies at TST Libraries.
Contains parsing information for each word in the Old Testament. Originally published in 1848, this volume has been superseded by Owens.
*Holladay, W.L. (ed.), A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament, based on the Lexical Work of Ludig Koehler and Walter Baumgartner. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1971. BS 440 .H6 1971 TRIF/WYC; 1986 ed at VUER.
An easy-to-use lexicon suitable for use by beginning and intermediate students
*Koehler, L., W. Baumgartner and J.J. Stamm (ed.), The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament., 3 vols. Revised edition translated and edited by M.E.J. Richardson. Leiden: Brill, 1994. PJ 4833 .K61813 1994 TRIF; also at STAT and GENR. Also available as a CD-ROM at the Graham Library: COMPUTER FILE 62 TRIN Ask at Reference Desk.
Based on the 3rd German translation. This edition improves upon deficiencies in the English translation found in the 1951 edition. Included cognates in Roman script. Only the first volume published thus far.
7. Theological Dictionaries
*Botterweck, G.J. & H.Ringgren (ed.), Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament. Translated by J.T. Willis. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1974-2001.11 vols. BS 440 .B5713 TRIF v.1-11. Copies also at KNOX, SMC, REG, STAS, VUER.
Originally published in German. To date 11 volumes have appeared in English.
*Harris, R. L., G.L. Archer & B.K. Waltke. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament., 2 vols., Chicago, IL; Moody, 1980. BS 440 .T49 1980 TRIF/WYC. Copies also at STAS, VUER.
Similar in format to Botterweck, but much shorter and more conservative.
*Jenni, E. & C. Westermann (ed.), Theologisches Handworterbuch zum Alten Testament. 2 vols., Munchen: Chr. Kaiser Verlag, 1971-76. BS 440 .T48 1975 TRIF/WYC 1-2. (Translated by Mark E. Biddle, Hendrickson, 1997, 3 vols BS 440 .T4813 1997 TRIF/WYC 1-3). Other copies at TST Libraries.
Includes a handy index to additional forms used within individual entries.
*VanGemeren, W.A. (ed.), New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis. 5 vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1997. BS 440 .N438 1997 TRIF/WYC v.1-5. Another copy at VUER.
Volumes 1-3 contain lexical articles, volume 4 topical articles and volume 5, indices.
8. Reading Helps
Armstrong, T.A., D.L. Busby & C.F. Carr. A reader's Hebrew-English Lexicon of the Old Testament. 4 vols. In 3. Grand Rapids, MI: Regency Reference Library, 1982-88. PJ 4833 .A69 1982 TRIF/WYC 1-3; copy also at STAS.
All Hebrew words used 50 times or less arranged by chapter and verse. Now available in a single volume.
Einspahr, B., Index to the Brown, Driver, Briggs Lexicon. Revised ed. Chicago, IL: Moody, 1977. PJ 4833 .G4E35 1977 TRIN & TRIN/WYC; copies also at ROBA.
Lists vocabulary by chapter and verse with page numbers to Brown-Driver-Briggs lexicon. An easy way to become familiar with using BDB.
Mitchel, L.A., A Student's Vocabulary for Biblical Hebrew and Aramaic. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1984. PJ 4845 .M5 1984 TRIF/WYC; copy also at STAS.
Lists vocabulary by frequency for efficient memorization.
Owens, J.J. Analytical key to the Old Testament. 4 vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1989-92. PJ 4731 .B53O94 1989 TRIF/WYC; copies also at VUEM, ROBA.
Gives parsing information for each word and form in the Hebrew Bible.
Blau, Joshua. Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. 2nd, amended edition. Wiesbaden: Harrasowitz, 1993. PJ 4567 .B625 1993 ROBA.
Blau offers some introductory insights into the historical development of the language without the clutter of jargon seen in more advanced tools. He is also particularly strong in the area of phonology and morphology.
Gesenius, W., E.Kautzsch & A.E. Cowley (ed.), Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1910. PJ 4564 .G5 1910 TRIN/WYC & TRIF; copies also at KNOX, VUEM.
For years the most detailed reference grammar available in English.
Horsnell, Malcolm J.A. A Review and Reference Grammar for Biblical Hebrew. Rev. ed. Hamilton: McMaster University Press, 1999. PJ 4567.3 .H678 1999 TRIN; copies also at ROBA, VUEM.
This is a transitional tool for those who have completed a year of study in Biblical Hebrew, but are still uncomfortable with the use of a reference grammar. It offers some historical detail beyond the scope of an introductory grammar.
Hostteter, Edwin C. An Elementary Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000. PJ 4567 .H67 2000 TRIN/WYC; copies also at KNOX, ROBA.
The latest introductory grammar available. At a glance, the only advancement it offers is its brevity. This leaves the work open to criticism over lack of detail. Seow (below), in contrast, has been criticized for an over abundance of detail.
Jouon, Paul. A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. Subsidia Biblica. 2 vols. Translated and revised by T. Muraoka. Rome: Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico, 1993. PJ 4567 .J7613 1993 TRIN/WYC v.1-2; copy also at REG.
Volume 1 deals with orthography, phonetics and morphology, while volume 2 covers syntax. Not as detailed as Gesenius (1910), but more accessible and up-to-date.
Kittel, B.P., V.Hoffer & R.A. Wright (ed.), Biblical Hebrew: A Text and Workbook. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1989. PJ 4567.3 K5 1989; copy also at VUEM.
Lamdin, T.O. Introduction to Biblical Hebrew. New York: Scribner, 1971. PJ 4567 .L3 1971 TRIN/WYC; copies also at SMC, STAS.
Long the standard introductory grammar.
Merwe, C.H.J. van der. A Biblical Hebrew Reference Grammar. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1999. PJ 4567 .M45 1999 TRIF/WYC; copy also at VUER.
A recent reference grammar incorporating recent advances in Biblical Hebrew syntactical structures lending coherence to textual units beyond the sentence.
Putnam, F.C. (ed.), A Cumulative Index to the Grammar and Syntax of Biblical Hebrew. Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 1996. PJ 4553 .P87 1996 TRIF/WYC; copy also at VUER.
Indexes by scripture verse the examples found in 14 major grammars and syntaxes. A good way to find discussions of problematic passages.
Seow, C.L. A Grammar for Biblical Hebrew. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 1995 (2nd ed.). PJ 4567 S424 1987;PJ 4567 .S424 1987 TRIN/WYC/ PJ 4567 .S424 1995X ROBA.
Answer key published separately and available only for the first edition. The revised edition has significantly altered the content of the exercises following each lesson and thus rendered the answer key obsolete.
*Waltke, B. & M. O'Connor. An Introduction to Biblical Hebrew Syntax. Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 1990. PJ 4707 W35 1990 TRIN/WYC;TRIN/WYC STOR; ROBA.
Much-needed update to Gesenius. Supersedes Williams' syntax (below).
Williams, R. Hebrew Syntax: An Outline. 2nd ed. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press, 1976. PJ 4701 .W55 1986 TRIN; copies also at STAS, ROBA.
Brief treatment with helpful examples.
11. Electronic Resources
Old World Hebrew Learning System COMPUTER FILE 70 TRIF/WYC.
An individualized, full-curriculum Hebrew language course and reference library. Includes over 3,000 activities demonstrated through audio, animation, graphics, and text. Also has1,200-word vocabulary system, lexical aids, theological and Biblical dictionaries, concordances, grammars, and abbreviations. Also includes the complete Logos Bible software, an online English and Hebrew study reference, and word index system.
Accordance COMPUTER FILE 72 TRIF/WYC.
Can be used as an electronic concordance with English versions, Hebrew Bible, Greek NT and LXX. Can also be used to search a specified text range for words and complex grammatical constructions in English, Hebrew or Greek.(Guide in preparation).
This database indexes periodical literature and multi-author works related to Biblical studies. To search for essays/articles/reviews on a particular scripture text, go to the "Scriptures" tab on the main search screen. Type in the scripture reference (using the prescribed abbreviations or scroll down to the one (s) you want. You can search by scripture reference or by Hebrew term. To search for essays/articles/reviews on a particular Hebrew term, go to the Subject field on the main search screen, and go to Browse. Type in "Hebrew Language" and scroll down to the alphabetical listing you require.
Original version by Brian Irwin, 12 Feb. 1998; updated (with contributions from Bernon Lee) by Tom Power Nov. 2012.