C L Seow
Category: Language & Reference
This revised edition is one of the best teaching grammars for Biblical Hebrew. The general outline of the book is deductive in that elements of grammar are presented systematically: The Alphabet, The Writing... Yet it employs an inductive approach in that biblical texts are used in the examples and exercises from as early as chapter II and by the end of the book students will have read something from every book of the Hebrew Bible.
The explanations of new forms are always clear and concise as is the layout and typeface. Seow utilises historical reconstruction in the discussion of some weak verb forms not as a matter of principle but rather to facilitate their location in dictionaries.
Following chapter V there is a very helpful introduction to using a dictionary thus familiarising students with the standard linguistic tool for studying Biblical Hebrew (BDB). Other excurses cover accents and pausal forms; the names used for verbal patterns and root types in standard dictionaries; reference grammars; an introduction to the standard Hebrew Bible text (BHS) and another to poetic Hebrew. These equip students well for further independent study.
This is a highly recommended text book yet one which still needs an instructor too. It is perhaps best used in conjunction with the Handbook to A Grammar for Biblical Hebrew, Revised Edition, also published by Abingdon.Abingdon Press | Order from www.christianbookshops.org | Order from St Andrew's Bookshops
Sue Groom, June 2006
The Revd Sue Groom is the Director of Deanery Licensed Ministry for the Kensington Episcopal Area of London. Before this she was Vicar of St Matthew's, Yiewsley and also served as the Reader Training Officer for the Willesden Episcopal Area. She is the author of Linguistic Analysis of Biblical Hebrew (Paternoster Press, 2003).
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