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Introducing Biblical Hebrew

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"Goes well beyond a presentation of the mechanics, teaching the student how to engage in exegetical and critical study of the Hebrew Bible. In this respect, [it] is a generous contribution to the study of Hebrew grammar and will likely be adopted widely for classroom usage."--Ralph K. Hawkins, Catholic Biblical Quarterly

This first-year grammar has grown out of the author's experience in teaching Hebrew to seminary students for over thirty years. Through those many years of classroom use, Dr. Ross has developed and refined his explanations, exercises, and examples to provide students with an effective introduction to Biblical Hebrew.

In addition to traditional deductive methods and exercises, Introducing Biblical Hebrew includes inductive sections that provide practical translation experience as the student works through passages from the Book of Genesis. In addition, there are well-paced vocabulary and grammar exercises and practical guides to the more technical features of the Hebrew Bible.

First year Hebrew students in Bible college, seminary, christian college, or a university setting will find Introducing Biblical Hebrew to be one of the most useful and balanced textbooks available. 


"In my opinion, this newly published biblical Hebrew teaching grammar by Allen Ross will become a widely used standard in the field. It has been tested for years in the classroom. It is comprehensive and thorough while at the same time well arranged and pedagogically effective for classroom use. This is a welcome addition to our resources for teaching and learning biblical Hebrew."--Richard E. Averbeck, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"Ross is to be commended for providing first-year Hebrew students with a very user-friendly grammar. Learning biblical Hebrew can be an imposing and frightening challenge, but Ross has done a nice job of making the technicalities of the language understandable....This grammar certainly has a potential to supplant others (e.g. Seow, Kelley) in the field and establish itself as the best of its kind."--Robert Chisholm, Dallas Theological Seminary

"Dr. Ross has given teachers and students an absolutely superb textbook introducing Biblical Hebrew grammar. The grammar is crystal clear, paradoxically concise and copious, and most helpfully creative. This experienced professor covers every important aspect of the Hebrew text, including the Masoretic accents and para-textual phenomena, and the critical apparatus at the bottom of the page. He introduces the student to the weak verb by the mechanical parsing method, which is the only way a beginning student can master their complex paradigms. His syntactic analysis is sufficient, and his excellent exercises re-inforce the learned material. Everything is presented in a lucid and balanced way."--Bruce Waltke, Regent College

"Ross' masterful Introducing Biblical Hebrew clearly evidences his thirty years of teaching under practical laboratory conditions. He provides clear, thorough explanations, yet not too esoteric as to be intimidating, anticipating the typical questions or stumbling points experienced by first-year students....For the teacher's needs, Introducing Biblical Hebrew more than satisfies a one-year curriculum or may function especially well as a preparatory step for advanced studies. It is the best introductory volume available for a curriculum equipping students for Hebrew exegesis. The instructor will enjoy teaching Hebrew with this textbook's accurate, balanced treatment."--Ken Mathews, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University

"Although many beginning grammars of Hebrew have appeared in recent years, few are of the caliber of Introducing Biblical Hebrew by Allen Ross. This is a text which can be used in bible colleges and seminaries or universities, whether the language program is minimal or extensive. Over the course of one year, the student covers all the basics of biblical Hebrew twice: once deductively and once inductively through guided rapid reading of selected chapters in Genesis. Thus it may be used for a one-semester-only-course as well. Great skill is required in teaching biblical Hebrew to distinguish barest essentials for beginners from information for intermediate or advanced levels. This text can easily be used at both levels. The arrangement of the material, the clear, simple presentation in each chapter with concise summaries at the beginning for quick overview and review, the consistent and early use of biblical examples in the exercises, and an approach which combines the best in modern linguistics with older philogical traditions reveals a pedagogical art seldom seen. Of special value is the inductive review via rapid reading. Many students flounder between finishing the basics and starting to read text with only a grammar and lexicon as aids. Ross provides copious helps to jumpstart the student in reading narrative and offers intermediate level information for the keen learner. I have used earlier versions of Ross' grammar to teach students over the past sixteen years with great success and highly recommend this text to others."--Peter J. Gentry, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

The Author

  1. Allen P. Ross

    Allen P. Ross

    Allen P. Ross (PhD, University of Cambridge) is professor of Old Testament at Beeson Divinity School and has taught Hebrew grammar to seminary students for over thirty years. He served as translator and editor of the New King James Version and commented on...

    Continue reading about Allen P. Ross


"Like so many Hebrew textbooks, this one is the product of several years of teaching the language to graduate students. In it, an introductory section that addresses the signs and sounds of the language is followed by an extensive study of nouns, adjectives, pronominals, and verbs. The author also treats various characteristics of the language such as Masoretic pointing, parallelism, and various literary constructions. The chapters are relatively short yet clearly written, enabling the student to learn the material gradually. There are several exceptional study aids at the end of the book that will facilitate this learning. . . . This is a fine tool."--The Bible Today

"Hammered out in scores of classrooms and many years in the making, Ross's Hebrew grammar is at last available to the wider public. This book is thoroughly up to date, well informed, and lavishly supplied with practical exercises and other features that are certain to enhance the learning process. . . . Ross and the publisher are to be applauded for a well-conceived, well-executed, and user-friendly tool that is certain to find broad acceptance and usage. Those who have waited long to see it are particularly gratified that this fine work is now available to the larger community."--Eugene H. Merrill, Bibliotheca Sacra

"Every year a new batch of elementary Hebrew grammars appears with the regularity and quantity of spring dandelions. All of them purport to be 'tested in the classroom' and to have discovered the key to eliminating every difficulty involved in learning biblical Hebrew. . . . When I saw that one of these books had received a stellar endorsement from a scholar as capable as Bruce Waltke, I decided it was worth a closer look. . . . No grammar is able to make the disciplined process of learning Hebrew actually disappears, nor can any single grammar satisfy the different learning styles and preferences of every student of the language. Nevertheless, with his grammar, Ross has gone a long way toward eliminating unnecessary difficulties in learning biblical Hebrew. So, while this new grammar might not be the language-learning equivalent of the perfect rose, it is no mere dandelion either."--Michael Williams, Calvin Theological Journal

"The book is handsomely designed and produced, full of diagrams and helpful examples in both English and Hebrew. . . . This volume contains much that is commendable, and includes details at interesting and sometimes useful places. It will no doubt find a niche among the plethora of new Biblical Hebrew grammars."--Bill T. Arnold, Hebrew Studies

"Introducing Biblical Hebrew goes well beyond a presentation of the mechanics, teaching the student how to engage in exegetical and critical study of the Hebrew Bible. In this respect, [Ross's] grammar is a generous contribution to the study of Hebrew grammar and will likely be adopted widely for classroom usage."--Ralph K. Hawkins, Catholic Biblical Quarterly

"Ross has provided us with a thorough teaching grammar for beginning Hebrew students. Each aspect of grammar and syntax is clearly presented with an adequate amount of examples. He provides a balance of linguistic and philological perspectives, combining age-old methods of language learning with more modern methods based on recent discoveries in pedagogy and linguistic theory. In his explanations, he does not shy away from using more technical, linguistic terminology. However, he does define each potentially unfamiliar term as it comes up. This makes his book an excellent grammar for students who have had no prior language experience, yet it is not too simple for those who have. . . . Ross's grammar is well-written, up-to-date, and a welcome addition to the teaching of Biblical Hebrew."--Jennifer Quast, Ashland Theological Journal

"Deliver[s] what is promised. Introducing Biblical Hebrew has set itself apart as an in-depth grammar, yet allows the teacher's role to be reemphasized."--Andrew J. Schmutzer, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

"Ross's Hebrew grammar is one of the best tools to begin learning the language. He clearly explains the major and several minor features of biblical Hebrew, and includes his own parsing system for Hebrew verbs."--Bruce Riley Ashford & Grant Taylor, Between the Times blog