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A Word on Diagrammatical Analysis

I know last week I mentioned that I would attempt a diagrammatical analysis of the Hebrews passage I translated. I did not post on it though. I attempted it and failed miserably. It has just been too long since I was taught it (and then it was just barely touched on). So, in case anyone was wondering, that is why I did not post it.

What can I do to gain more knowledge in this area? What books would you recommend? Are there any online practice games or anything for discourse analysis?



22 Responses

  1. Grassmick has been the standard in Greek for years. But linguists today want to see syntax trees. Bottom-up is the easiest to learn. We’ve got an example here (http://hebrewandgreekreader.wordpress.com/2008/12/09/diagrams-are-not-cool-vol-2/)

  2. Matt, I published a complete analysis of Heb. 1:1-4 in the Westminster Theological Journal several years ago. It uses Johannes Louw’s method of colon analysis. Let me know if you’d like a copy if you haven’t seen it yet.

  3. It’s yours. Just resend me (via private email) your mailing address and I’ll get it in Tuesday’s mail.

  4. Jay E. Smith has a chapter entitled “Sentence Diagramming, Clausal Layouts, and Exegetical Outlining” in Interpreting the New Testament Text: Introduction to the Art and Science of Exegesis (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2006): 73-134. That might be worth checking out.

    • I would echo Nick’s comment on that chapter in the Bock and Fanning book, it is excellent. Accordance and Logos both have tools for doing diagrammatical analysis. I have done all of 1 Peter in the format of the Smith chapter. You can find it here

      • BibleWorks also has a tool for creating diagrams. That’s what I was trying to use, but I just couldn’t figure out how to set up the diagrams.

    • Thanks, Nick. I’ll check it out.

      • Matt, if the BW one is the same as Logos ans Accordance than the Bock and Fanning book Nick mentioned will do it. I just remembered that Tom Schreiner’s Interpreting the Pauline Epistles also has a great chapter on how to do DA and its probably cheaper.

        If you don’t want to buy the books, send me and email and I’ll reply with some of my examples and an explanation of the what each individual marker is supposed to do and how to set up the sentences. I think DA is one of the best ways to understand the Greek syntax as Greek instead of just working toward translation.

  5. Daniel, I actually have the Bock/Fanning book to review. I just haven’t managed to get through it yet. I’ll check it out and if I still have any problems then I’ll probably ask for those examples.

    I bet you’re right about understand syntax through DA. Up to now the point of my translations has been to increase my vocabulary and to just stay in the Greek (since I’m not in school right now).

  6. I actually used the BW diagramming tool along with the Bock and Fanning book. I found it pretty easy to navigate.

    • Good to hear. I’m going to go through it tomorrow (or Tuesday if I run out of time) with whatever translation I do (be sure to vote below) and post my thoughts.

  7. to be sure discourse analysis is different from diagraming, so far as I understand it. Also think about getting Dave Black’s Linguistics for Students of NT Greek.

  8. also, I think missed the title of the post – for diagramming, you can look to Fee’s NT Exegesis book, but also a really good resource for learning diagramming is Walter Kaiser’s Toward an Exegetical Theology, I think around Ch 8 there are actual diagramms both Hebrew and Greek as well as some English. Hope that helps.

  9. Essay went out today. Enjoy!

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