View Full Version : Lexiconic Root Designation

03-06-2011, 08:59 PM
In the BibleWorks program, root designation is according to what lexicon?

03-07-2011, 06:40 AM
If you are using the Westminster Hebrew Morphology, the dictionary form (or "lemma") of each word does not follow a specific lexicon -- at least, not slavishly. We consult all the latest scholarship and make our best judgment call. However, we do rely greatly on Koehler & Baumgartner's Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament.


Kirk E. Lowery, PhD
President & Senior Research Fellow
The J. Alan Groves Center for Advanced Biblical Research

Mark Eddy
03-07-2011, 08:43 AM
If you are asking about Greek lemmas, the various morphology databases also do not follow a single lexicon. BibleWorks has a Greek Alias file which contains listings of words for which either the lexicons use a different lemma or the morphology databases decide to spell the lemma differently. (This allows BW to find all the correct lexicon entries for you.) There are also occasions in which a given database (BYM comes to mind) seems to decide on a lemma based on analogy to similar forms, without checking to see if any lexicon actually has a listing for that lemma. The more you use BW, the more you may discover that the different lexicons and different morphology databases disagree on what the root is for a number of words. Then you get to puzzle over why such disagrements occur.
Mark Eddy

03-07-2011, 08:55 AM

Is there a similar Hebrew Alias file?

Mark Eddy
03-07-2011, 09:00 AM
There is a similar Hebrew alias file, but currently it is "hard wired" into BW, so users cannot edit it. (I have made some additions to the file, but such additions do not "work".)
Mark Eddy

03-07-2011, 09:08 AM
Where can one find the file? Is it human-readable?

Mark Eddy
03-07-2011, 02:02 PM
The file to which I referred is hebalias.txt. It is in the BW databases folder. You can read it in Wordpad or Notepad, if you know the font map for the bwhebb font and remember to read from right to left. (On my computer I copied the .txt file into MS Word and changed the font to bwhebb, and I can read it in Hebrew,) I have made a number of additions to my file, in anticipation of the programmers adding a functionality for this to be editable. But my additions have had no effect (negative or positive) on how BW looks up lemmas. The the Greek alias file can be viewed (in Greek font) and edited from within BibleWorks. Instead of using a .txt file it is a .gal file (for Greek Alias List). So apparently when the programmers set it up (back in BW 4 or 5, if I remember correctly), they intended it for Greek only. Since I'm not a programmer, I don't know how hard it would be to change the functionality for Hebrew.
Mark Eddy

03-08-2011, 09:49 AM
Thanks! This is helpful.

Yes, an editable alias list would be an enhancement useful to scholars and other serious students. Most would not care. Depending upon the cost of implementing this, I would doubt there is much perceived value added for that cost. :-/