BDAG meet your big brother, Liddell-Scott.
As you can tell by this side by side shot, Great Scott makes poor old BDAG look like a dwarf. What you don’t see (because I couldn’t get the pictures to come out right) is what the books look like inside. Comparing the print of Liddell-Scott to BDAG is like comparing a photo caption text to the front page headline. Furthermore, whereas BDAG’s entries are generally differentiated, Liddell-Scott groups as many lexemes together as possible. And the confusing part of it is that these words are grouped together not necessarily because they share meanings but because they share the same letters. Thus in order to find the word εὐλογία you have to look up εὐλογέω. Now in this case you probably could have found the right entry, but in other cases it is much more challenging.
A screen shot with LSJM in action. Highlighting just a few of the features Starting at 1 o’clock on the picture.
- LSJM integrates completely into the Resource Summary window just like any other lexicon. This is part of BibleWorks lexical-grammatical integration which keeps track of all of those pesky citations so you don’t have to.
- Resource Window integration means two things. First, it means that whenever you are on a word, if that word is in Liddell-Scott (which it will be unless it’s some obscure proper noun), you will see the beginning of the entry in the Resource Summary Window. To open the entire entry, just click on the appropriate line in the Resource Window.
In this example, I was holding my mouse over the word καιροὺς in the Browse Window. Because LSJM has this lemma, it appears in the Resource Summary window. Now if I wanted to bring up the LSJM entry in the Lexicon Browser, I would simply click on καιρός in the Resource Summary window.
- But if you look carefully below that, you also see a line that says Ref: Gen 1:14. What’s that about? This is the second awesome feature of LSJM and its integration into the Resource Summary window. In this case when you are on verses of the Bible which have citations in LSJM, you will know about it without reading every single entry. You will know about it because the Resource Window will say that your given verse has a reference in LSJM and it’s all right there. This is pretty awesome because it means you don’t have to click on every single word to know if LSJM has something to say about that given word in that given text. [Note: That doesn't mean that if LSJM does NOT have a reference that what LSJM says is irrelevant or useless. LSJM will *always* be useful because it will help you learn shades of meaning that a given word had in other texts. This can be important for determining whether a word can or can't mean X by looking at how it was used in other places.]
Now at 9 o’clock in the picture, you will see bold-faced Greek words and indented Greek words with symbols in front of them. The bold-face word is a head entry as given in the print LSJM. The indented words are all the words you would find in the print LSJM within that entry. In addition to that, the indented information also tells you whether a word is found in the Supplement.
The various symbols mean the following:
- Main entry words are in bold.
- Supplemental entries are prefixed with a “+”, “x” or “*” and subentries are prefixed with a superscripted number indicating order in the main entry.
- A “+” indicates a supplemental item that is an addition to a main entry.
- An “x” indicates a supplemental entry that is a new lexicon entry.
- An “*” indicates a correction to a main entry.
Thus instantly you know that if there is a number by the entry, it is a unique word. If it has another symbol it will be supplementary information. If you click on one of the words marked with the +, x or * you will instantly be taken to the supplementary entry. Quick and easy!
- Finally, at 10 o’clock in the picture, you will see the verse pop-up in the Lexicon Browser. Thus, whenever LSJM has biblical citations, you can see within the Lexicon Browser what that verse is. Or if you’d like you can click on the link and it will be brought up in the Browse Window.
Two final pictures demonstrate what I meant about how easy it is to access the supplementary information.Let’s say I use the Lexicon Browser to see the word ἀγαπάω in LSJM. If I do that, the word list filters out all words except the relevant hits. In this case, there are two exact hits. One is the main entry, one is the supplementary entry. How easy is it to go back and forth from the main entry to the entry? It’s as easy as clicking back and forth from one to the other. No page turning. No opening up new windows. None of that. Click one. Bingo. Click back to the other. Cha-ching. Pretty nice deal if you ask me.If you want to see the bigger picture of what’s going on, click the Reload button and you’ll get the full word list back and see the complete relationship of these two words according to the full word list.
In closing, I can do no better than echo Mike Bushell’s words (since he actually *is* BibleWorks and can actually say and mean stuff):
We believe this to be the most accurate electronic edition of the “Great” Scott available. There are still typos though. The text is huge and represents a humongous amount of work. Oxford is beginning a project now, using our text and other resources, to produce the best text possible. That will be made available to our users (who purchased LSJM) without charge. [more available at the BibleWorks forums.]
From what I have seen I too believe this to be a great package and BibleWorks’ commitment gives me confidence that any parts I missed will be covered in the future.