Kathleen Dixon's Reviews > I Never Knew That Was in the Bible: The Ultimate A to Z(r) Resource Series

I Never Knew That Was in the Bible by Martin H. Manser
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Aug 25, 12

bookshelves: religion-and-spirituality, didn-t-finish
Read on May 08, 2011 — I own a copy

This isn't one of those books that you read from cover to cover, so I guess it'll never appear in my "Read" category. Of course, I might make a project of it some time - hmmm, that's a thought.

But anyway, I'm reviewing this now because I'm having a good browse, and I'm delighted with what I see. It's alphabetical (I get really annoyed with Reference books that have some complicated system - what a waste of time!), and has 1100 words and phrases ranging from the fairly obvious (e.g. doubt, doubtless) through to the "who would have known?!" (e.g. A leopard cannot change its spots).

With so many supposedly educated people nowadays having absolutely no knowledge of the Bible, the prerequisites for much of literature is missing. Some phrases, sure, have become so much a part of everyday language that people do know what they mean, but there is a lot that has background which the author assumes the audience understands. Reading the Bible as Literature should be a basic part of one's education, in order to be able to read the Classics (and indeed, modern writers who have a grounding in Biblical studies of some sort). I believe that universities offer courses along these lines.

This book is a resource that fills the gap a little. However, if you don't know what to look for (when reading literature), then you won't know to look in here. It's a conundrum. What are you going to do?

This book could also be useful for people who insist on the King James Version (yes, there are still some) as it has entries of words which have changed their meanings (in the last 400 years, surprise, surprise). Here's an excellent example - the word "halt." It used to mean to stumble, or hesitate, rather than Stop! Now that I read that, I remember reading somewhere the sentence, "he was halt" and finding out it meant "he had a limp."

I do love words, and everything connected with them. This also has some quite funny illustrations throughout, so I will definitely enjoy it.
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