I’ve been grateful to be able to materially update two prior posts with additional content:
Publication Year Ranges in Zotero: Previously, this post described how to get Zotero to produce the proper output when citing a series or multivolume work as a whole that was published over a range of years. The prior post version, however, was only able to address this for ranges of years that already had an end date. But with thanks to Brenton Wiernik on the Zotero forums, I’ve been able to update the post to describe how to get the output required if the year range doesn’t yet have an end. This is useful when citing series that are still being published (e.g., the Göttingen Septuagint).
Get Strack and Billerbeck via Internet Archive: Previously, this post identified how to access on Internet Archive volumes 1–3 of Hermann Strack and Paul Billerbeck’s Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch. But these volumes represent only half of Strack and Billerbeck’s commentary. Happily, Ronald van der Bergh mentioned that he had found another page on Internet Archive that provides a combined file of volumes 1–4. I’ve now included a link in the post to this additional file. If anyone comes across volume 5 or 6, do please leave a comment with where you found them, and I’ll be happy to update the post further.
As critical as libraries are, however, you shouldn’t limit your research to them. Instead, there are a number of helpful online resources you can use to gain access to key materials. In this post, we’ll discuss the first two.
Internet Archive is a non-profit organization that is “building a digital library of Internet sites and other cultural artifacts in digital form.”
You might be familiar with Internet Archive from its “wayback machine,” which periodically captures websites over the course of their development. It can be amusing to go back and look at early versions of sites for companies that now have a significant Internet presence (e.g., Apple, Google, Walmart).
But, Internet Archive also has an incredibly useful repository of scanned, public-domain books. Searching Internet Archive can sometimes be a bit unwieldy. The metadata can be a bit off. So, you do have to look at the scans themselves to confirm you’re getting what you’re looking for.
Even so, a few of the gems I’ve found there over the years include, in whole or in part:
True, some of these resources took some time looking to hunt up on Internet Archive. But, Internet Archive made getting access to them much simpler and faster than it would otherwise have been.
Similarly, books.logos.com has a growing collection of over 8,000 full-text resources.
Accessing these titles is free during the beta period, and you don’t need to have purchased a Logos base package to use books.logos.com.
But, users who have the desktop software installed can search books.logos.com directly from there via an “everything” search. You can then click through one of the pages shown with results to pick up there reading the full text on books.logos.com.
In a 1524 letter about the importance of Christian schools, Martin Luther pressed the importance of biblical languages. A few of his comments are no less apt for the kind of research tools we’ve begun considering here:
O how happy the dear fathers would have been if they had had our opportunity to study the languages and come thus prepared to the Holy Scriptures! What great toil and effort it cost them to gather up a few crumbs, while we with half the labor—yes, almost without any labor at all—can acquire the whole loaf!1
Sure, it might take some culling through search results to find what you need. But by comparison to how searching like this has needed to be done in the past, tools like Internet Archive and books.logos.com can both make some parts of the research process much faster and some of the materials involved available much more broadly than they might otherwise be.
Quoted in Gary Pratico and Miles Van Pelt, Basics of Biblical Hebrew, 119. ↩
The second English edition of Wilhelm Gesenius’s Hebrew Grammar (ed., E. Kautzsch, trans. A. Cowley) is based on the 28th edition of the German text. I recently came across a curiosity in the English text that made me want to have a look at the German behind it. Thankfully, Internet Archive has several versions of Gesenius-Kautzsch, and at least one of these is of the grammar’s 28th edition.
A major critical edition of the Old Latin is underway under the auspices of the Vetus Latina Institute. Some volumes have already been released. But, others are still forthcoming.
Meanwhile, the only complete edition of the Old Latin remains that published by Pierre Sabatier (Reims: 1739–1749; see Würthwein, Text of the Old Testament, 147). A later version of this edition, with some volumes reissued in later years, seems to have had three volumes, all of which are available on Internet Archive:
For reader’s convenience, the bottom of each page indicates the portion of the biblical text covered in that page’s facsimile, with hand-written notes over the facsimiles to indicate the starts of chapters.
The quality of the scan seems to be quite good. Below is an excerpt from Deut 30:2 (on pg. 248) showing the asterisks and metobelus used to mark what seems to be a revision toward the text represented in the MT.