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Thread: Is this the Hebrew text we want?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    15

    Default Is this the Hebrew text we want?

    I would like to raise the following subject: Is the Hebrew text provided by BW as accurate as possible?

    BW uses the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia which is based on the Leningrad text. But the Leningrad manuscript differs in hundreds of places from the standard Masoretic text. A large part of these are minor, like missing or extra dagesh, but there are also lots of wrong vowel points, and sometimes wrong letters or missing letters.

    Your thoughts?

  2. #2

    Default Another suggestion

    Can you suggest another Hebrew text readily available in electronic form and a corresponding morphologically tagged database?

    Even if everyone were to agree that the BHS is not the best (not saying I do), the issue is still irrelevant to electronic databases if there is no other option available.

    If there is, I would love to have the BHS and whatever else is out there so as to facilitate OT Text Criticism.
    Joe Fleener

    jfleener@digitalexegesis.com
    Home Page: www.digitalexegesis.com
    Blog: http://emethaletheia.blogspot.com/

    Annotated Bibliography of Online Research Tools: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibliography

    User Created BibleWorks Modules: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibleworks



    Psalm 46:11
    `#r<a'(B' ~Wra' ~yIAGB; ~Wra' ~yhi_l{a/ ykinOa'-yKi W[d>W WPr>h;

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    9

    Smile

    This guy is making probably one of the most accurate electronic editions of the Hebrew Bible yet (based on ben Chayyim/Ginsburg):

    http://www.bibles.org.uk/

    He is actively seeking help for fixing it up.

    No edition is infallible of course, and there are also different opinions as to what manuscripts are more reliable. There are many people arguing for a new more comprehensive eclectic critical edition of the Hebrew Bible, and of course, the Jerusalem Bible Project is working on one. BHS definitely needs some work and we can only cross our fingers hoping for something better.

  4. #4

    Default Morphology

    Quote Originally Posted by d-man
    This guy is making probably one of the most accurate electronic editions of the Hebrew Bible yet (based on ben Chayyim/Ginsburg):
    You are right this guy is doing some nice stuff, but it is only the text right now, we would need it to be tagged...but one thing at a time.

    I would love to see this work integrated into BW.
    Joe Fleener

    jfleener@digitalexegesis.com
    Home Page: www.digitalexegesis.com
    Blog: http://emethaletheia.blogspot.com/

    Annotated Bibliography of Online Research Tools: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibliography

    User Created BibleWorks Modules: www.digitalexegesis.com/bibleworks



    Psalm 46:11
    `#r<a'(B' ~Wra' ~yIAGB; ~Wra' ~yhi_l{a/ ykinOa'-yKi W[d>W WPr>h;

  5. #5

    Default Why not create our own versions?

    If anyone wants another (better) text, why not export the current WTT text, then modify it to bring it in line with another text (e.g. Aleppo Codex, Koren Tanach, Leningrad Codex) then re-import it as another version using the database compiler facility. It would need several people to agree to proof-read sections of the text and make appropriate corrections. The Text Comparison tool would then allow you to see what the differences are.

    A morphologically tagged version is probably not necessary (at least at first), because the differences are likely to be small, such as spelling differences, vowel or accent differences, etc.

    The fact that BibleWorks only has one Hebrew text (and BHS is a particularly bad example) is a severe limitation for serious Hebrew study.

    Why don't several volunteers contribute to have another text, complete with Massoretic notes, etc?

    Shalom,

    Ewan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ewan MacLeod
    The fact that BibleWorks only has one Hebrew text (and BHS is a particularly bad example) is a severe limitation for serious Hebrew study.

    Ewan
    Yes, I agree.

    What about other commercial programs? Do any have a better Hebrew text?

  7. #7

    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by d-man
    This guy is making probably one of the most accurate electronic editions of the Hebrew Bible yet (based on ben Chayyim/Ginsburg):

    http://www.bibles.org.uk/

    He is actively seeking help for fixing it up.

    No edition is infallible of course, and there are also different opinions as to what manuscripts are more reliable. There are many people arguing for a new more comprehensive eclectic critical edition of the Hebrew Bible, and of course, the Jerusalem Bible Project is working on one. BHS definitely needs some work and we can only cross our fingers hoping for something better.
    I have emailed Tigran Aivazian who runs this site, and he is willing to make his input files available to produce a new/alternative user-defined Hebrew text available to BibleWorks users. I will investigate how difficult it would be to convert his input format into the CCAT format required by BibleWorks. Realistically, there would be three stages:

    1) Make the base text available, which would make it possible to use BibleWorks' text comparison facility.

    2) (Later) make his critical apparatus available, which would be a fantastic bonus for BibleWorks users. It provides a wealth of information on the Hebrew text.

    3) (Much later) provide an alternative morphological version, although the differences would probably be more at the accent and spelling levels, or singular/plural use of words, rather than a different interpretation or understanding of words.

    Tigran's text is already very high quality, but has not been fully proof-read, and not all the masoretic footnotes have been entered. Text which has not been proof-read is likely to be "correct" according to some Hebrew text traditions, but not necessarily exactly in line with Ginsburg's or the Rabbinic text traditions.

    If anyone wants to help, the best way would be to help proof-read the base text. See the www.bibles.org.uk web site for details.

    Regards,

    Ewan MacLeod

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ewan MacLeod
    I have emailed Tigran Aivazian who runs this site, and he is willing to make his input files available to produce a new/alternative user-defined Hebrew text available to BibleWorks users. I will investigate how difficult it would be to convert his input format into the CCAT format required by BibleWorks. Realistically, there would be three stages:

    1) Make the base text available, which would make it possible to use BibleWorks' text comparison facility.

    2) (Later) make his critical apparatus available, which would be a fantastic bonus for BibleWorks users. It provides a wealth of information on the Hebrew text.

    3) (Much later) provide an alternative morphological version, although the differences would probably be more at the accent and spelling levels, or singular/plural use of words, rather than a different interpretation or understanding of words.
    When I made my last post, I hadn't noticed that there was a whole second page of discussion!

    Your idea is good, but it sounds like a long-term project and a lot of work. I think that the BW text could be fixed up with a lot less effort.

  9. #9

    Default BW text vs. Ginsburg/ben Chayyim text

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Kvaalen
    Your idea is good, but it sounds like a long-term project and a lot of work. I think that the BW text could be fixed up with a lot less effort.
    The current BW Hebrew text (as of BibleWorks 6.0) isn't "just" the BHS - it is the "corrected BHS" text. That is, the original problems in the printed editions of BHS have been substantially corrected and the electronic WTT text has been extensively proofread to bring it much more in line with the Leningrad Codex (see the copyrights section in the BW manual for further details). The WTT text is therefore actually very good, and if it contains typos there won't be many and they won't be serious (unlike printed editions of BHS). If you look at the comments in the WTM, there are lots of places where there is a note to the effect that the morphology is different to what BHS says. So, there is really no need to "fix" the current BHS text, and it stands as a good Hebrew text which very closely matches the Leningrad Codex (the original intention of the BHS).

    Actually, importing the Ginsburg/ben Chayyim text won't take much longer, and I have already got a working text in my copy of BibleWorks. The Text Comparison tool works well, and picks up the differences between WTT and the Ginsburg text. There are a few issues with some of the accents (like rafe) and circula not being displayed, but that is being worked on. It would also be nice if large/small/raised letters, etc. were also displayed. Importing the footnotes isn't so far away either, but there are a number of ways that could be done, which I am still deciding upon.

    Regards,

    Ewan

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    44

    Default Public Domain Ben Chayyim Electronic Text?

    BibleWorks would very much like to enhance its offerings by including the ben Chayyim text, but we've not found an electronic version of this text unencumbered by copyright and of sufficient quality as to need only very minor editing. If anyone knows of such a version that might be available for inclusion in BibleWorks, please let me know, and I'll follow up with the text's owner. Thanks.

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