New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

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New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Louis L Sorenson » August 24th, 2011, 11:40 pm

October is the planned release date of New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B. H. McLean.

Here is the amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/New-Testament-Greek-Introduction-McLean/dp/0521177022/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1313854992&sr=1-5. This book is published by Cambridge University Press (CUP). Here is the blurb.

This book provides a general introduction to the grammar and syntax of Hellenistic, or New Testament, Greek. Comprised of 24 chapters, it is suitable for a two-semester course. Each lesson is structured around equipping students to read passages drawn directly from the Greek New Testament. In addition to the traditional Erasmian system, students are offered the option of using a historical Greek system of pronunciation similar to that used in early Christian preaching and prayer. The book includes extensive reference tools, including paradigms for memorization, grammatical appendices, and illustrations. The text is accompanied by a Web site that offers a workbook of passages for translation. Each chapter of the grammar concludes with a vocabulary list of Greek terms that appear in that lesson's assigned passage for translation, found in the online workbook. Audio recordings of all vocabulary words and translation passages, using the historical Greek system of pronunciation, are provided online. • provides the instructor and students the choice of using the historical Greek pronunciation system, or, the traditional Erasmian system. Audio recordings are provided online of all vocabulary and passages for translation. • Students will read continuous sections of Greek New Testament (John 1-6, Matt 9:9-13) rather than artificial classroom sentences, and the online workbook includes additional translation passages as well as syntactical and parsing questions. • includes an exhaustive summary of all grammatical paradigms in the appendices.


Has anyone received an evaluation copy or looked at the website?
Last edited by Stephen Carlson on August 25th, 2011, 9:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Corrected spelling error in title.
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Paul-Nitz » August 29th, 2011, 8:58 am

I've ordered it. They say it will arrive in early November. Give me a nudge if I haven't posted something by 2012.
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Mark Lightman » December 8th, 2011, 10:59 pm

Did you ever get the book, Paul?. Rod Decker did not think too much of it. Can you access the website without owning the book?
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Paul-Nitz » December 10th, 2011, 11:42 am

Mark,
Amazon told me it shipped. That means anywhere from 5 days to 5 weeks later I'll get it. I'll let you know.
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Jonathan Robie » December 10th, 2011, 12:54 pm

Mark Lightman wrote:Rod Decker did not think too much of it.


You're right, Rod Decker doesn't recommend this.
ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Mark Lightman » February 13th, 2012, 1:49 pm

Paul, did you ever get the book? I'm just interested in hearing the audio on the website, if one can do so without buying the book.
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Re: New Testament Greek: An Introduction by B.H. McLean

Postby Paul-Nitz » March 14th, 2012, 9:34 am

Comments on
New Testament Greek - An Introduction, B. H. McLean, University of Toronto

When I saw an advertisement on this book, I was hooked by two things. It taught the historical Greek pronunciation and it used a section of the Bible for instruction. As a bonus, there were audio resources online.

From the book description:
    "Each lesson is structured around equipping students to read passages drawn directly from the Greek New Testament. In addition to the traditional Erasmian system, students are offered the option of using a historical Greek system of pronunciation... Audio recordings of all vocabulary words and translation passages, using the historical Greek system of pronunciation, are provided online... Students will read continuous sections of Greek New Testament (John 1-6, Matt 9:9-13)."
    http://www.amazon.com/New-Testament-Gre ... 056&sr=8-2

After I ordered the book, I found Rod Decker's informal review of Mclean's book. His comments are found at http://ntresources.com/blog/?p=1406 I was beginning to feel disappointed.

The book arrived and I gave it browse.

The general approach of this book does not seem any different to me than the other 10 primers on my shelf. In his introduction, he spends 2.5 pages emphasizing getting the translation of key words right. Χαρις must not be thought of as simple gloss, "grace." In context it can have other meanings. "The lexicographer Frederick Danker laments those who take refuge in such 'sanctified vagueness' for 'despite the patina of centuries of usage,' this practice 'may invite liability to the charge of linguistic incest'" (Mclean, p. 14).

Before lesson one, I was pretty sure this was not a book that would fit with my thinking on language acquisition. I guess we dare not trust ourselves to take a basic meaning and try to figure out the nuance from the context.

My interest dipped further as I paged through the book and found the traditional method of listing grammatical terms, explaining them, and then offering me a list of forms to memorize. As Decker noted in his comment, very, very slim on examples. The lessons, as far as I could tell, were not In fact, I couldn't even find a reference to the translation selections for each lesson. They are simply assigned in the online workbook.

Speaking of which, how about the audio and other online content?
http://www.cambridge.org/gb/knowledge/i ... #prim_tabs

It took me awhile to find the resources. I finally found it through a link in Decker's comments. Then, it took me a few emails to convince Cambridge that I should have a "lecturer's account" and unlock the resources. With permission granted, I downloaded them and took a look today.

The audio consists of 43 files. 24 of those are a reading of vocabulary. The pronunciation is consistent and accurate to my ear. It is not, by the way, Restored Koine/Buthian. Οι is ee and η is ee. But the recording is very poor (pops & bumps at every aspirated consonant) and contains no natural speech pauses - not at all useful for assimilation. "OneαγγελοςTwo.αμηνThree.ΓαλιλαιαFour..."

The other 19 files are simply readings of the translation selections: 18 small selections from John 1-6 and one from Matthew 9. The recordings are quite a bit better in these readings than in the vocabulary. But it's nothing special – certainly not as good as Buth's John reading. Again, there is a skimping on natural pauses of speech (though I'd say Buth could breathe a bit more, too) and there are again recording pops and such. For the wedding at Cana, a dialogue is done between two readers. But they are both women with very similar voices and the absence of pauses between thoughts makes it far less than what it could have been.

This may be a fine book for someone who wants to take a Wenham/Mounce/Croy etc. approach. I haven't made a comparison with those because that approach doesn't interest me. I'll stick with Dobson and Hale and adding in auditory from here and there.... until Louis Sorenson writes his dream primer, http://schole.ning.com/forum/topics/my- ... ent%3A9983
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