Re: dates

From: Jonathan Robie (
Date: Mon Feb 10 1997 - 18:57:11 EST

Ronald L. Minton ( wrote:

> I have read that the first truly advanced Greek grammar was done
> about 1650, and the first advanced lexicon was done in 1619. Can some
> one direct me to a study of these matters? Does anyone have knowledge of
> the subject readily available?

Look at the introduction of BAGD for a history of lexica. Bauer's
intro to the first edition starts with this:

"The history of dictionaries specifically intended for the Greek
New Testament opens with a Greek-Latin glossary of seventy-five
unnumbered pages in the first volume of the Complutension
Polyglot of 1522, including the words of the New Testament,
Ecclesiasticus, and the Wisdom of Solomon. The incompleteness,
inaccuracy, and elementary character of this glossary reflect
the low state of Greek studies at the time it was published,
but it was the first in a long and useful succession of New
Testament lexical works.
The first NT dictionary with scholarly pretensions was the
Lexicon Graeco-Latinum in Novum Testamentum by Georg Pasor,
published in 1619 at Herborn in Nassau. Ludovicus Lucius
put out his Dictionarium Novi Testamenti at Basel in 1640
with its words arranged for the first time in strict alphabetical
order instead of by word-roots."

Fred Danker's Multipurpose Tools for Bible Study discusses the history
of early grammars:

"The first to undertake a systematic description of the peculiarities
of New Testament diction was Salamo Glassius (1593-1656), a distinguished
pupil of Johann Gerhard, in Philologia sacra (Jena 1623-36), but his
insistence on Hebrew as the point of origin for clarification of New
Testament phenomena diminished the value of his work.
Much more significant were the efforts of Kaspar Wyss and Georg Pasor.
The former, professor of Greek in Zurich until his death in 1659,
displayed considerable sobriety in the matter of Hebraisms and
cited much valuable illustrative detail in Dialectologia sacra
(Zurich, 1650). Georg Pasor, whose lexicon has already been discussed,
broke new ground with Grammatica graeca sacra Novi Testamenti
domini nostri Jesu Christi (Groningen, 1655). Son Matthias Pasor,
professor of theology at Groningen, had allowed his father's
manuscript to lie unpublished for 18 years because grammatical
study was held in low repute, but finally he published it in
1655, convinced that grammar was the clavis scientiarum
omnisque solidae eruditionis basis ac fundamentum."

These are just excerpts. I bet the various grammars also have histories of
grammars in their introductions.


Jonathan Robie
POET Software, 3207 Gibson Road, Durham, N.C., 27703
Ph: 919.598.5728 Fax: 919.598.6728
email:, <--- shockwave enabled!

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Sat Apr 20 2002 - 15:38:05 EDT