Thursday, October 11, 2007

Westcott and Hort unicode with original spelling?

A blog request: I would like help in getting a reliable unicode version of Westcott and Hort. There is a caveat below, please note.

The recent republication of Westcott and Hort's GNT by Hendrickson is welcomed. For a sample page, see Matthew:
The fonts are clear and the text looks quite inviting. (Wouldn't Greek subheadings befit a Greek document? Do others find English distracting within Greek?).

the caveat:
Some electronic editions of WH currently being used in some popular software packages like Bibleworks are edited and do not reflect the WH text being republished above. E.g., in the Matthew page above the following names occur:
Δαυειδ (be happy that Matthew didn't follow a more Josephian Δαβείδης)
but these are re-spelled in the Bibleworks edition of WH. (The ει in this list above are spelled ι in Bibleworks' WH for some unknown reason.)

Those WH spellings have a good claim to originality and it would be a shame for a new generation of students to think that WH themselves ignored the manuscripts on this, or that WH were not broadly confirmed by the 20th papyri finds.

My request is, would someone send me or point me to a truer WH unicode text? The Perseus people have posted one, though their delineation and versification need to be corrected by hand when using with students. Does anyone have a clean unicode WH? We use the WH texts with our students in the summer SXOLH. Because of student use, I prefer an accented, word separated, correctly versified text.

With thanks in advance,


  1. RB: these are re-spelled in the Bibleworks edition of WH. (The ει in this list above are spelled ι in Bibleworks' WH for some unknown reason.)

    Blame me, since Bibleworks is basically using my original Online Bible W-H text, in which the orthography (particularly in relation to proper names) was standardized to that present in NA/UBS.

    I am currently working on a project to reproduce for the public domain a precisely accurate CCAT format W-H text: original orthography, fully accented, aspirated, and punctuated, and eventually this will be shared with Bibleworks and others; but so far only 18 NT books (the shorter ones) are complete, and the rest await my (limited) "spare time".

  2. With only a quick glance, it looks though the Accordance version of WH matches your sample. The spellings of the names you listed are the same.
    In the 'about' info, the text is listed as, "Derived in part by comparison to the digital version of Maurice Robinson, with punctuation and diacritics added by Rex A. Kovisto." So this would be a different version from what BibleWorks would have.

  3. I should add that one reason the orthography in my electronic edition of W-H was standardized to NA/UBS is that the primary back-reconstruction of the W-H text was made from the "Editionum Differentiae" appendix in NA27 -- but that appendix does not include what they would have considered "minor orthographic differences", even though this fact is not stated in the NA27 Introduction nor at the head of that appendix.

    A secondary source for checking my back-reconstruction of the W-H text was Sanday's century-old collation of W-H against Stephens 1550, another source that similarly ignored those "minor orthographic differences".

  4. Thank you, Maurice,
    I don't blame you, though I was aware of your role in the Bibleworks text. Very glad to have you on the blog. I didn't want to name you.
    Would you be able to send me the 18 boooks that you have?

    I tend to prefer using Accordance but I do not have the money for a WH text. I need public domain. I'm not sure what CCAT format is? Hopefully unicode?

  5. CCAT is not Unicode, nor would I, being an inveterate DOS 5/Win 3.1 user, have a clue as to how to convert CCAT into Unicode.

    Basically CCAT is ASCII format text that looks like this:

    )En a)rxh^| h)^n o( lo/gos, kai\

    If you can do anything with that (obviously the various software publishers know what to do), then I certainly could send you the 18 books already completed (at the gmail address, I presume).

  6. I didn't see any converters for CCAT Greek to Unicode Greek on a quick web search. τίς βοηθήσει ἡμῖν; Surely they exist.

    And just as surely, we would want the 'clean' Westcott and Hort in unicode.

  7. PS to myself: It turns out that the tagged WH in Accordance is only $30, which makes it quite doable.

  8. Good Information

  9. Maurice Robinson had kindly sent me his CCAT text already (what is finished up to this point) and I wrote a simple perl/regex script to convert to unicode. If interested I just threw it up at:

    It seems to work reasonably well... Hope it helps.

    Joshua Grauman