RE: Exegetical Dictionaries

A. Brent Hudson (
Tue, 12 Mar 1996 00:20:43 -0500

Alan Cassady wrote:
I would like to know the opinion of the list regarding the following
Exegetical Dict's . . .

All of the dictionaries mentioned are good (although I have not personally used Spicq's work); however, Brown's has the advantage of an excellent index volume, which includes a separate indices for Scripture quotations, Rabbinic materials, pseudepigrapha, Qumran, Philo, Josephus, Hebrew & Aramaic words, Greek words, and a general subjects. This far exceeds vol. 10 of TDNT! Since Brown categorizes Greek words under English headings, it takes a big step in recognizing the concept of semantic domains, which may aid in exegesis (why an author chose one word over another etc.).

The Exegetical Dictionary of the NT is also an excellent work. It does not have an index volume and thus, at that level, is not as usable as Brown (it has just an English to Greek index in vol. 3). However, the EDNT deals with more words than Brown; moreover, its work on prepositions and other Greek particles shows a real deficiency in other dictionaries. Also, EDNT has a good bibliography attached to most of its articles (though mostly German).

I also recommend the unabridged Liddell and Scott Lexicon (it is a real gold mine!). Of those volumes you mentioned, I have found Brown to be the most helpful, since it has such a good index volume. On the other hand, the EDNT is also an excellent work and makes up for some deficiencies in Brown. These two works in conjunction to a good lexicon should keep your sermons and studies deeply rooted in Scripture and scholarship.

A. Brent Hudson

P. S. I have heard that Spicq's work is quite good. I will be interested to see comments on that work myself.

Graduate Student
McMaster University
Hamilton, ON, Canada OR