question concerning dictionary entries

Randall Buth ButhFam at compuserve.com
Mon Mar 11 04:11:00 EST 2002


shalom Steven,

Your questions bring up deeper issues. I have a paper forthcoming in 
the Danker volume on this topic.

You may be interested to know that the old Hatch Redpath LXX 
Concordance uses the continuative infinitive for its lemma.
Also, Morgenthaler's NT Vocabulary "statistik".

A couple of basic principles from natural language acquisition:
1. real words should be used within a language, not artificial words that 
need extra processing (though dictionaries are not natural language use).
2. a word means what it means. See below:

>For example, if I speak of the Greek word "bapto" meaning "to dip".  =
>Should
>I say a or b?
>
>a] "The Greek word "bapto" means "to dip".
>
>b] "The Greek word "baptein" means "to dip."
>
>Thank you in advance for your replies.
>
>Sincerely,
>Steven D. Baxley
>Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic<

In line with natural language principles we would say
either (a) bapto means "I am dipping"
or (b) baptein means "to be dipping" 
or (c) bapsai means "to dip"

ERRWSO

Randall Buth, PhD
Director, Biblical Language Center
www.biblicalulpan.org
and Lecturer, Biblical Hebrew
Rothberg International School
Hebrew University



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