Yes, it’s true. I hope to produce The Apostolic Fathers Greek-English Interlinear, which will be an interlinear edition of the Greek portions of the Apostolic Fathers. Given enough interest, it will be published electronically by Logos Bible Software.
I pitched this idea internally at Logos awhile back, and it was decided to “pre-pub” the work to see if it would gain enough interest. If you’re not familiar, in Logos-speak, a “pre-pub” is a way to announce a potential project and let people indicate their willingness to purchase it. If there is enough interest, then we produce it, and folks get a great introductory price on a resource they want. (more info on “The Making of a Pre-Pub”, if you’re interested)
The pre-pub for my Apostolic Fathers Interlinear hit today. This is real, and I’ve already started the work (wonder why I did translations of the Didache and Polycarp’s Letter to the Philippians recently?)
There are a few distinctives to this project. In addition to including a generic short gloss of the dictionary form and a context-sensitive grammatically-informed gloss (along with sequence numbering where necessary), I will also be classifying each word according to its Louw-Nida Semantic Domain and article. (I did something similiar with Louw-Nida references for the Pastoral Epistles a few years ago) Where words in the Apostolic Fathers do not exist in Louw-Nida’s lexicon (which really doesn’t happen that often) these will be noted. Louw-Nida really isn’t extensible—articles within domains proceed from generic to specific, as the domains themselves do, so adding to the taxonomy really isn’t supported. So I am not planning on shoe-horning things into their classification but simply noting when items are not accounted for. I also have a bunch of information I’ve compiled regarding cross-references, both with the New Testament, the LXX and also within the writings of the Apostolic Fathers themselves. These references will also be included.
Yes, I know there are interlinear haters out there (and that you’re reading my blog). And I know I’m not going to change your mind on the issue of interlinears. Frankly, I’m not looking to change your mind. I’m looking to get folks into the text of the Apostolic Fathers because I think the writings are important for all sorts of reasons, like: seeing how they deal with Scripture and what they consider “Scripture” to be; seeing how they handle delicate issues; seeing how they interact with the world around them; seeing how they teach; seeing how they live. I also think the writings of the Apostolic Fathers are a goldmine for comparative studies at the word and phrase level. They get our head out of the text we’re conditioned to understand in a context we’re conditioned to understand (the New Testament) and allow us to see other native usages in contexts we’re not familiar with.
It is this particular aspect that I think an interlinear Apostolic Fathers can help with, particularly for those who are not strong in their Greek. If it can help someone stretch their Greek muscles, I’m for it. Yes, I’m aware of the atrophy argument, and that folks won’t go further (blah blah blah) but if people move from wiggling or crawling to walking with a crutch, and that’s all the further they ever get … well, I think it’s a good thing. They’re not crawling anymore.
Finally, here’s an endorsement from a friend of mine, Johnny Cisneros, who is an all-around smart guy, a new Daddy (yay!) and who is also working on a video series on “Using Biblical Greek” for Logos:
Rick Brannan's work with Greek resources over the past fifteen years at Logos Bible Software has given him a rare internalization of the Greek language. We're fortunate that he's applying this knowledge to a careful analysis of the Apostolic Fathers in the production of The Apostolic Fathers Greek-English Interlinear. His pioneering contribution will leave many students and scholars of Koine Greek in his debt.
So please check out the prepub. If you’re interested, then sign up for it and get it at its cheapest price. And let me know if you have further questions.