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greater part, discouraged by the prospect of the necessary time and labor, suffer their early acquisitions to pass away. A few add to them ; while a much smaller portion still, are the subjects of that enthusiastic fondness for sacred literature, which overcomes all obstacles, and leads to a critical acquaintance with the primary channels of divine inspiration.
Should it be asked : Ought then the study of the Hebrew to be abandoned by all those who cannot cherish the hope of becoming critical expounders of every part of the sacred volume ? We reply, that there is a remedy, which will not only supersede the necessity of such abandonment, but which, if faithfully applied, will prevent the danger of those crude and forced interpretations, which result from reliance upon the lexicons alone. The critical use of the concordance places the imperfect scholar, in respect to any particular words and phrases, which for the time being he may be called to investigate, on the same vantage ground that the more advanced critic occupies in respect to the whole Bible. With an accurate knowledge of the grammar, and such a facility in reading as may enable him to ascertain the associations of those terms he wishes more closely to examine, he may determine their meaning with nearly as much confidence as the lexicographer himself. He has all the means which they enjoy, except perhaps the aid derived from the cognate tongues, and which are far from being as important as some enthusiastic scholars would represent. He may, it is true, be very deficient in that species of minute criticism, which traces the name of every rare plant or animal through all the Shemetic varieties; but the soul of the language,—the terms most important for all theological purposes, -may be made his own, not simply as remembered from the lexicon, but as known and felt in a similar manner, if not in an equal degree, with the words of his native tongue.
The Old Testament is all that remains to us of the language, and therefore the knowledge of the more important Hebrew roots must be derived mainly from the Hebrew itself. For this purpose, it presents facilities which perhaps are afforded by no other tongue. Words much more readily explain each other in the Hebrew, than in the Greek. Had the Iliad been the only surviving relic of Grecian literature, it would have presented far more difficulties than the Bible. For this, the latter is indebted to its parallelism, which in various ways brings out the meanings of words comparatively rare, by connecting them
by way of contrast, resemblance, climax, amplification, or antithesis, with those which are of more common occurrence. It is thus that parallelism should be regarded not as a inere poetical ornament, but as designed by God for one of the most important aids to the meaning of the holy Scriptures. Roots which occur but two or three times in the Bible are generally in such connections, as to leave but little doubt of their proper primary sense. The verb pe for example, and the noun na occur only in Genesis 15: 10, Jerem. 34: 19,—the root for only in Prov. 11: 2; and in Hiphil, Micah 6: 8; and yet what doubt can we have as to their meanings, after observing the associations and antitheses in which they are placed ? But little more light can be obtained from the lexicons than is furnished by the passages themselves. • To take examples of more important terms,- let us suppose that a clergyman, whose knowledge of the Hebrew is somewhat limited, wishes to arrive at a true knowledge of the forensic word P7? (righteousness). All that he has to do is to examine every passage in which it occurs from Genesis to Malachi, and he knows as much about it as Gesenius himself. Perhaps more :—the spirit of Neologism may have blinded the lexicographer, to many an important association, with which it was connected in the minds of those divine messengers, whose inspiration he denies, and the fulness of whose terms he can therefore only imperfectly appreciate. Let the same course be pursued with the words for holiness, atonement, covenant, redemption, the various terms for the soul, that dread word sheol, the phrases, in which the Hebrew is so copious, for innate as well as actual depravity, the sublime names of the Deity and of the divine attributes, the terms for life and death in their temporal and spiritual significations. He will find, in the Hebrew Scriptures alone, most ample means for a satisfactory knowledge of these important words, in all their senses, primary, secondary and metaphorical.
By such a course, the words become his own. They suggest not only their separate remembered meanings, but the fitness of their associations. He detects at once, and without the aid of critical rules, the fallacy of any interpretations which dissociate them from their leading senses. Words are to him no longer ονόματα or ρημάτα, but λόγοι: they pass beyond the province of memory, and become a part of the inner property of the mind, giving rise to emotions such as they excited in the souls of David and the prophets. He thinks with them, and not about them. He may rely, modestly, upon his own judgment, should it sometimes differ from that of the rationalizing lexicographer; for he has nearly the same external means of knowledge, whilst he may have far more participation in the spirit which dictated the Scriptures.
A vast amount of theological knowledge may thus be acquired; greater perhaps than could be attained in any other way. Volumes on the subject of the atonement would not produce so distinct and heartfelt an apprehension of this cardinal doctrine of all religion, as such an examination of the Hebrew words 2 and neo in every passage in which they occur. · The doubts which perplex many minds in reference to the subject of a future state, as taught in the Old Testament, would be effectually dissipated by pursuing the same course with the words wb: 1777 Bixar and the various terms which are used in connection with them. A depth and spirituality would be discovered in the Old Testament, which escapes the notice of the superficial reader, whilst light would be shed on many important Greek words in the New Testament, whose meanings vary from classical usage, in consequence of their connection with Hebrew associations and modes of thought.
These general remarks, on the utility of the concordance, apply, in some degree, even to those which are the most imperfect! To the disgrace, however, of our theological literature, it must be said, that a Hebrew concordance of any kind, is inaccessible to the great body of our clergy. The great expense of Taylor and Buxtorf, notwithstanding their acknowledged deficiencies, excludes them from most private libraries. The theological community do therefore owe a debt of gratitude to Dr. Nordheimer, for furnishing a work so complete, and at the same time so cheap as to be within the reach of those of our clergy who have the most limited means. Through the indefatigable labors of this adınirable scholar, and his faithful coadjutor Mr. Turner, we have, at a less price than nine dollars, a work every way surpassing those of a similar kind, which formerly could not be obtained for ten times that amount. We thus speak of it, from a careful examination of this, and other productions of this distinguished orientalist, and if we indulge in the language of praise, it is prompted by a grateful appreciation of his untiring efforts to furnish the best helps for the right understanding of the Hebrew Scriptures.
But few words are necessary for a description of the work, the first number of which is now before us. With the exception of the more ordinary particles, every word in the Hebrew Bible is given with every passage in which it occurs cited in full. Every variety of form, inflection and conjugation is presented and separately arranged. The nouns, for example, are given, first in their simple form, then as they occur with the article, the prefix conjunctions and prepositions, with and without the article, followed by the same forms as they occur with all the various suffix pronouns. The word w may suffice as a specimen of the whole. The forms follow each other in the follow
a single amomalous form occurring) הַאַט וָאִישׁ וְאִישׁ אִישׁ : ing order
לְאִישָׁהּ וְאִישָׁה אִישָׁה אִשׁוֹ לְאִישֵׁךְ אִישֵׁךְ לְאִישִׁי אִישִׁי לְמֵאִישׁ מֵאִישׁ וְלָאִישׁ
Aux me mungon DTUX. Under these separate heads are cited all the passages, in which they are found ; each passage containing all the words necessary to the understanding of the connection, and amounting in all to more than 1500 ; besides those which are precisely similar, not only in the primary but also the connecting words. Every one may judge of the immense labor bestowed, notwithstanding the assistance derived from previous less perfect compilations, and especially the concordance of Fürst on which the present work is founded. The mere labor of reading the proof, and comparing the original passages, is alone a Herculean task, that might have discouraged even the most enthusiastic lover of Hebrew learning.
By the plan pursued important aids are given, not only to those who wish to fix the meaning of words, but also to the critical philologist, who wishes to judge of the comparative frequency of unusual forms, the effect of the article, and all those matters that belong to the more minute criticism of the language. It may thus be regarded, not only as a concordance of words, but also as a synopsis of etymological and grammatical peculiarities.
The work, when complete, will form a narrow quarto of about 900 pages, very closely printed in beautiful Hebrew type; the leading words in large letters, with the references in smaller, yet very plain and distinct characters. The first number is executed with all that elegance and accuracy, which appear in the other works of our author, and which have been so highly commended in the various periodicals in which they have been reviewed. The words are arranged in the etymologico-alphabetical order, with an index of the same kind, and also a purely alphabetical index, for the use of beginners. The order of the roots, however, is undoubtedly the best both for a lexicon and concordance, and one most useful process in the acquisition of the language is neglected, when the student is not exercised in classifying the derivatives under that radix of whose life and spirit they all partake. Independent of the use of a concordance, as a book of reference, we cannot conceive of a more pleasant mental exercise, than to trace a root through all its derivatives, and with all the passages in which they occur present at a glance, to familiarize the mind with their various associations, until the primary sense, or soul of the word, comes forth like light from chaos, -henceforth to form a part of the furniture of the student's own soul, his own word, or aóyos, and not a mere remembered sound, arbitrarily connected with the various senses given by the lexicographers.
We conclude by a few remarks in reference to the lexico, graphical portion of the work. This, although necessarily concise, will be found to contain all the information which may be deemed important in Gesenius. A separate lexicon is necessarily swelled by reference to illustrative passages. This of course is dispensed with in the present work, because the same office is most fully performed by the concordance which follows. All that remained, therefore, was to give the author's view of the primary sense, not so much by way of authority, as a clue to guide the student in the subsequent examination of passages,—or as a nucleus around which his own thoughts might gather, until the result of his own investigation might confirm or reject it. Next follow very concisely the secondary applications of the word and its derivatives. This part of the work has evidently been the result of much more mental labor than the more mechanical department. If the author has erred, it has arisen from a strong desire (which may have occasionally been carried to excess) to find a principle of unity flowing through all the applications of a term. He may have been led to this, not only from a philosophical or theorizing habit of mind, but also from having constantly before him all the passages in which the term occurs. It must also be admitted, that this simultaneous exercise of compiling the concordance of passages, gives him great advantages in tracing the primary sense, and should attach great authority to his decisions.
It should undoubtedly be assumed, that there is in most, if