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Lexicography: Biblical Hebrew

(1,906 words)

Author(s): Holtz, Shalom E.
The modern lexicography of biblical Hebrew began with the publication of Hebräisch-deutsches Handwörterbuch über die Schriften des Alten Testament (Leipzig, 1810–1812) by Heinrich Friedrich Wilhelm Gesenius. The main statement of Gesenius’s methodology occurs in the introductory essay to the second edition of the dictionary (Leipzig, 1823). Gesenius identifies three main “sources of Hebrew lexicography”, which he lists at the very beginning of the treatise, in descending order of importance. These are: 1) the linguistic usage of the Old Testament itself, in so far as this…