Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Another interim word on keywords and the stacking of frames

This image is beyond silly - it's a grid of all the data points representing words used as frames in the Psalter. Handling that large a grid is awkward. Hard to see. And may take some time to load. It is comprised of 370 images and one 10M htm file.

It shows the patterns of new words introduced as a recurrence and possible frame in each psalm right up to to Psalm 150 and of the reuse of frames used in earlier psalms.

The overall question is - what story do the keywords tell and is the order of the psalms deliberate - an act of redaction, this decided if it can be, purely on the basis of content? Apart from historical speculation, content is all the information I have. Of course we know that the Psalter is well represented at Qumran and that it was the favorite book of the New Testament authors - judging by the number of allusions there.

Are there a few superficial lessons in content?

What we have so far is this:
  • Psalm 1 is about: happiness, wickedness, the way, sin, righteousness, and there is a conditional
  • Psalm 2: Earth, the stand-alone first person pronoun, the nations, and king
  • Psalm 3: many, arising, salvation, and people
  • Psalm 4: many, hear, righteous, speak, call, trust, bed, offer
  • Psalm 5: many, voice, you (both the stand alone pronoun and in the tone of address - even preposition + second person singular pronoun makes a significant sound at the end of the psalm.)
  • Psalm 6: hear, life/soul, time, vexed (O excuses!)
  • Psalm 7: righteousness, righteous, conditional, life/soul, evil, toil, salvation, work, persecution, trouble, turning, judgment

That's enough for now - it only gets more complex as the length of the psalms increase. Also I can see where things might be equal that are slightly different - due to the difficulty of automatically parsing the Hebrew. I expect you can see the pattern of frames reaching both forward and back.