Page 97 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 43

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WELLISCH / HEBREW BIBLE CONCORDANCES
85
(The temple of the Holy, or Holy sanctuary) (Ps. 79:1) displayed
in red and black on a double title page: on the right-hand page in
Hebrew, on the left-hand page (otherwise the customary place of
a Hebrew title) in Latin. The book is arranged as follows. First,
the order of the books of the Bible is given in three parallel col­
umns: in the masoretic order; in Hebrew alphabetical order with
Latin translation; and in Latin alphabetical order with Hebrew
translation. Then follows the author’s Hebrew introduction
which deals first with most of the concordances preceding his
own, and then explains why he decided to compile one on an en­
tirely new plan. All previous concordances were arranged ac­
cording to the order of the Vulgate which is not only different
from the masoretic order and therefore alien to Jewish scholars,
but is not even used any longer for modern Bible translations; the
citations are always given in abbreviated form so that often the
context of words is lost; errors abound on almost every page, es­
pecially in the locators; different forms of verbs are often con­
founded; proper names are mixed up with homonymous com­
mon nouns, e.g., the word
matan
(gift) is listed together with the
name
Matan
, a priest of Baal (2 Kings 11:18); mistakes in vocali­
zation according to the
masorah
abound; roots of verbs written
identically but having different meanings (homographs) are
mixed up; thousands of citations are not given, and even some
unique words (the so-called
hapax legomena)
are not properly
listed; grammatical errors in the masoretic text are not recog­
nized as such; not all particles are properly listed, and not all of
their occurrences are noted; and finally, the mistakes and peculi­
arities of Fiirst’s concordance are criticized — all this with dozens
of examples and citations.
Thus, Mandelkern says, he could not rely on any of the earlier
concordances but had “to build the temple of the Holy” entirely
anew. Starting from the best available edition of the text, he
arranged all headwords in their proper grammatical form,
noting all variants of the
masorah’,
all nouns, adjectives and verbs,
together with the particles were in one alphabetical sequence, but
the pronouns and the conjunction
asher
were listed separately, as
were all Aramaic words; roots common to Hebrew and Aramaic
words were indicated and cross-referenced in both places; all
proper names were provided with complete citations. The intro­
duction concludes with the cautionary remark that “not all is pure