LEH - Lexicon of the LXX

clayton stirling bartholomew c.s.bartholomew at worldnet.att.net
Sun Nov 21 12:20:29 EST 1999

>From: "J.K. Aitken" <jka12 at cus.cam.ac.uk>

> But one buys a lexicon as a lexicon, and it is perhaps this aspect
> where it is weakest. It is indeed short, merely giving glosses (in
> contrast to the discusion of definitions, semantic domains etc. that has
> been going on on this list) and only citing the first five occurrences of
> each lexeme. The glosses are at times misleading and unhelpful I have
> found, probably because of their reliance on LSJ. Whilst the editors admit
> that LSJ was weak on LXX material they still follow LSJ when the sense
> seems to be the same. One wonders therefore why we need a special LXX
> lexicon, is that is all we need do. It also appears that in cases where
> there are a high number of occurrences of a word, they have not
> considered every instance to be able to give the full range of meanings.
> But it still has its value as a research tool, but perhaps not as a
> lexicon of definitions.


I agree with you, LEH is weak as a lexicon. I had only used it a very
short time back in '93 before I discovered that you cannot rely totally
on the glosses and must do some lexical analysis of your own. That is
you must use LEH intelligently not blindly trusting it like one is
tempted to do with BAGD. This is not a good policy even with BAGD but it
is a far far better lexicon than LEH.

The main reason I bought LEH was to avoid using LSJ all the time which
is so big that finding words is time consuming. I tend to use lexicons
in stages. When reading the NT I start with a short one like Danker's
abridged BAGD and then if the situation seems to require it I move on to
the longer and bigger lexicons and in real extreme cases to the
theological dictionaries like  EDNT, TDNT, Spicq, Cremer, NIDNTT.

So I suspect that LEH is worth owning if it saves time and energy and it
has these other features which help justify the purchase. However when
working in the LXX one is going to have to do some thinking about the
meaning of words. It isn't going to be just handed to you all
pre-digested like baby food which is what we are used to when working
with the NT lexical reference works.

In a lot of ways this makes LXX more exciting to work with, since the
territory isn't completely charted out for you like it is in the NT.

Enough on this topic.


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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