Hippolytus and Searching Koine Texts in Accordance

Accordance has just released a morphologically tagged edition of Hippolytus’ works. The resource contains the tagged Greek text, an English translation, and a notes module. It is currently on sale for $19.90. These are the works that are included:

  • Fragments on the Interpretation of Daniel
  • On Christ and Antichrist
  • Against the Jews
  • Against Plato on the Cause of the Universe
  • Against Noetus

Hippolytus lived around the turn of the third century (ca. 170–236 CE) and is somewhat of a mysterious figure in early church history. In fact, in IVP’s Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters, J. A. Cerrato writes,

No riddle of the patristic church has vexed scholars more than the so-called Hippolytus question … Yet, few other ancient Christian writers can claim to have influenced the course of biblical interpretation more than did this pastor and preacher.

Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters, p. 524

A quick search of my Accordance library turned up a number of hits across a variety of resources.

Hippolytus is mentioned in Eusebius of Caesarea’s Church History, but even Eusebius was unsure of exactly who he was. What we do know about Hippolytus is that he was a pre-Nicene church leader who produced biblical commentaries and wrote tractates against heretical teaching. His commentaries were used by Origen, Eusebius, Ambrose, Jerome, and Theodoret (Cerrato, p. 527).

Several interesting facts I discovered perusing my library search results for Hippolytus:

  • Cerrato says that, according to Jerome, Origen attended one of Hippolytus’ sermons, and this perhaps motivated Origen’s own commentary production (DMBI, 526)
  • F. F. Bruce states that Hippolytus’ commentary on Daniel (ca. 204) seems to be the earliest orthodox commentary on any biblical book (Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary, 4:433).
  • Hippolytus’ writings are mentioned in Dead Sea Scrolls scholarship because he comments on the Essenes (see, for example, John J. Collins, The Apocalyptic Imagination, p. 215).
  • According to the New Oxford Annotated Bible, the title of the book 1 Maccabees derives from Hippolytus.

Text

The text is based on Migne’s edition and has been tagged by Rex Koivisto of Multnomah University. Rex is responsible for much of Accordance’s tagged Greek texts, and he does a fantastic job. The fact that the text has been hand-tagged distinguishes the Accordance edition from other editions of Hippolytus. Furthermore, Hippolytus adds to the growing number of tagged Koine texts available and easily searchable in Accordance

Searching Koine Texts in Accordance

Having Hippolytus in Accordance is beneficial regardless of whether or not you are interested in actually reading through his writings. The primary benefit, at least to me, is having at hand more tagged Greek texts that I can easily search. For example, if I am reading the Greek New Testament, I can tap once on a word in the text and immediately search for the word in a large body of Koine Greek texts.

Here is how to set this up in Accordance:

  • Create a group of texts that include all of your Koine Greek texts. I named this particular group Primary Texts +.
  • Make sure your Live Click settings are setup to search this group of texts.

Here is a screenshot that shows the text group and my Live Click settings:

This simple setup provides me a simple, clean two-column workspace and allows me to move from text to concordance with a single click or from text to lexicon with a triple click.

Conclusion

For less than twenty dollars, you can add over 20,000 more Koine Greek words to your searches. Accordance’s edition of Hippolytus’ Selected Works has been hand tagged and adds to a growing number of Koine texts available for searching. In Accordance, with one click you can move from reading a biblical text to searching the biblical text alongside a host of other Koine texts. The tagging is quality work, Accordance frequently updates and maintains their data, and there is nothing like it in the combination of ease of use and functionality. For these reasons, Accordance continues to demonstrate that for Greek readers it is a fantastic platform in which to invest.

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