How to best find source material?

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Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Jun 19 2014 4:18 PM

I seem to find myself in situations where a commentary or dictionary mentions some ancient item that I'm sure is in my library, though I don't know where. Just yesterday I was trying to track down the text of the 18 Benedictions from Jewish tradition. After quite a bit of searching (far more than I'd like to admit - particularly when I realized that a Google search would've been much faster) I found it in the Worship in the Early Church Anthology. But I'd like to know how to go through this process more efficiently.

For example, I was reading the Psalms earlier today and found myself looking closer at Psalm 5:9. My beautiful Cited By Tool quickly brings my attention to the heading Dirige from the Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature. All kinds of fascinating things here (not least of which is that I now know where the term 'dirge' comes from).

The term Dirige is derived from Vg Ps. 5:9 and Ps. 5:8 (“Dirige, Domine Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meam” [“Direct, O Lord my God, my way in your sight”]). In Christian liturgy, Ps. 5:8 was used as the first antiphon in the first Nocturn of Matins in the Office of the Dead. The first word, Dirige, came to signify the recitation of Matins for the souls of the dead and ultimately the recitation of the entire Office of the Dead.

Jeffrey, D. L. (1992). In A Dictionary of biblical tradition in English literature. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans.

However, let's say I now want to track down the first Nocturn of Matins in the Office of the Dead (I don't want to read about it, I want to read it). Should I type in "Office of the Dead" into the Search field? I have a Verbum package and am willing to bet that it's somewhere in my library. But such a search primarily returns other resources commenting on the Office of the Dead. What would be the best way to go about finding the text itself?

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 4:55 PM

What to do --> Crying

Languishing Liturgy of the Hours (8 vols.)  or Angelus Press Daily Missal and Divine Office (2 vols.) but you really want the Breviary before the revision which is MIA.

Google: http://books.google.com/books?id=9eUTAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA143&lpg=PA143&dq=Matins+%22Office+of+the+Dead%22+breviary&source=bl&ots=jgmeCkxTUW&sig=8pEuptzzj8EOmOTX0BeRQb__-uk&hl=en&sa=X&ei=UHejU7mVM4i-oQTf8YGwCw&ved=0CE8Q6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=Matins%20%22Office%20of%20the%20Dead%22%20breviary&f=false

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 5:20 PM

How depressing. I'm already signed up for both. I just assumed they went through long ago. Thanks, MJ.

But outside of my specific example, how do you go hunting down sources when they're already in your library? If you were looking for the text of the Amidah (ie the 18 Benedictions) and didn't know which book it would be in, how would you do a search for it? Running the search across the entire library, I find several wonderful analytical pieces in dictionaries, journal articles, and commentaries saying insightful things about it. But how can I get better finding the thing itself?

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 5:50 PM

Nick ... just talking in a general way (and not being familiar with your Logosian talents), the normal approach I take is to check off the two heading categories, the large text category, and topics category, in the Search-Basic panel at the top. 

Then (as with Google, etc) I select the most unusual word specific to the subject.  

This isn't a particularly effective approach, since it depends on where they put 'subject' for what you're looking for. But it reduces the chaff.

The other approach, which MJ and fgh are more familiar with resourse-wise, is to build a collection that embraces the bulk of original text (vs 'about' text).  That's what I do, to further find the missing puppy.  Usually I find him fairly quickly, using both techniques.


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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 6:06 PM

Nick Steffen:
If you were looking for the text of the Amidah (ie the 18 Benedictions) and didn't know which book it would be in, how would you do a search for it?

I'd remember that Logos hasn't made any progress on providing a Siddur and Crying

So I'd walk over to my bookshelf . . .

More seriously, Denise is correct. I have liturgical book collections by general denomination (all Lutheran, all Anglican etc.) which I use to build a comprehensive liturgical book collection. I do something similar for hymns. Or if the topic is not one I anticipate reusing I create a collection on the fly that includes the most probable resources to search.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 459
Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 6:08 PM

Denise, thanks for the recommendations! I tried fiddling with the various categories in the search at the time, but without much luck. I'll think more about building a "original source" collection. Sounds like that might be the most effective long term solution to this kind of request.

An analogous example in my mind might be that of the Biblical text itself. If we didn't have a different kind of text available and just did a straight search for a Bible topic or reference across our entire libraries, we'd undoubtedly find far more links to 'about' texts, even though we'd say that the 'original' texts are really what's important. 

Thanks for your help!

Posts 459
Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 19 2014 6:12 PM

MJ, Understood. That sounds like a really helpful approach (compared to what I'm doing, at least)! Have you posted the denominational liturgical collection rules anywhere? I tried searching the forums but didn't see anything offhand.

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fgh | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 6:27 AM

Nick Steffen:
I was trying to track down the text of the 18 Benedictions from Jewish tradition. After quite a bit of searching (far more than I'd like to admit - particularly when I realized that a Google search would've been much faster) I found it in the Worship in the Early Church Anthology.

Since you're interested: an English Siddur can be found somewhere in the Files forum.

Nick Steffen:
How depressing. I'm already signed up for both. I just assumed they went through long ago.

As MJ points out, they wouldn't necessarily have helped you in a case like this. You'd need the office that was used at the time.

We're still missing a lot of basic Catholic texts: the Glossa Ordinaria, the Sentences, older (and even some modern) liturgical books, older canon law, many monastic rules, medieval penitentials... And the same with Orthodoxy and Judaism, of course.

"The Christian way of life isn't so much an assignment to be performed, as a gift to be received."  Wilfrid Stinissen

Mac Pro OS 10.9.

Posts 459
Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 9:59 AM

fgh:
Since you're interested: an English Siddur can be found somewhere in the Files forum.

Fantastic, thanks!

fgh:
We're still missing a lot of basic Catholic texts: the Glossa Ordinaria, the Sentences, older (and even some modern) liturgical books, older canon law, many monastic rules, medieval penitentials... And the same with Orthodoxy and Judaism, of course.

I'd imagine someone has a growing list of the various original material Catholic items still needed. I vaguely recall seeing posts on missing Orthodox and Jewish works (areas which both bear more significant lacunae than the Catholic offerings), but must have missed how much further we have to go in Catholic material. Do you know if any of the items you've mentioned are in the pipeline?

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fgh | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 10:28 AM

Nick Steffen:
Do you know if any of the items you've mentioned are in the pipeline?

The current Office and the 1917 Canon Law are in prepub, I believe. Other than that, only Logos knows.

We're also missing lots and lots of non-encyclical papal writings, of course. And the latest Denzinger.

"The Christian way of life isn't so much an assignment to be performed, as a gift to be received."  Wilfrid Stinissen

Mac Pro OS 10.9.

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Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 10:35 AM

fgh:
We're also missing lots and lots of non-encyclical papal writings, of course. And the latest Denzinger.

How much difference is there between the Denzinger editions?

When I bought a base package, it was shortly after Ott's Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma was removed. Though I'm still a newbie, I was told that would be a helpful resource to have and it'd be nice to get that back in Logos again.

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fgh | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 10:58 AM

Nick Steffen:
How much difference is there between the Denzinger editions?

I haven't seen the new, but the one we have is from 1954. That's before Vatican II...

"The Christian way of life isn't so much an assignment to be performed, as a gift to be received."  Wilfrid Stinissen

Mac Pro OS 10.9.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 1:27 PM

Nick Steffen:
Have you posted the denominational liturgical collection rules anywhere?

No because I've done it via tagging ... but I'll pull something together to help you.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 3:09 PM

My scheme is given at http://community.logos.com/forums/p/86075/604300.aspx#604300

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 459
Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 20 2014 3:16 PM

Thanks for your help, MJ! I'll take a closer look.

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