CONCORDANCE (Late Lat. concordantia, harmony, from cum, with, and cor, heart), literally agreement, harmony; hence derivatively a citation of parallel passages, and specifically an alphabetical arrangement of the words contained in a book with citations of the passages in which they occur. Concordances in this last sense were first made for the Bible. Originally the word was only used in this connexion in the plural concordantiae, each group of parallel passages being properly a concordantia. The Germans distinguish between concordances of things and concordances of words, the former indexing the subject matter of a book ("real" concordance), the latter the words ("verbal" concordance).
The original impetus to the making of concordances was due to the conviction that the several parts of the Bible are consistent with each other, as parts of a divine revelation, and may be combined as harmonious elements in one system of spiritual truth. To Anthony of Padua (1195-1231) ancient tradition ascribes the first concordance, the anonymous Concordantiae Morales, of which the basis was the Vulgate. The first authentic work of the kind was due to Cardinal Hugh of St Cher, a Dominican monk (d. 1263), who, in preparing for a commentary on the Scriptures, found the need of a concordance, and is reported to have used for the purpose the services of five hundred of his brother monks. This concordance was the basis of two which succeeded in time and importance, one by Conrad of Halberstadt (fl. c. 1290) and the other by John of Segovia in the next century. This book was published in a greatly improved and amplified form in the middle of the 19th century by David Nutt, of London, edited by T. P. Dutripon. The first Hebrew concordance was compiled in 1437-1445 by Rabbi Isaac Nathan b. Kalonymus of Arles. It was printed at Venice in 1523 by Daniel Bomberg, in Basel in 1556, 1569 and 1581. It was published under the title Meir Natib, "The Light of the Way." In 1556 it was translated into Latin by Johann Reuchlin, but many errors appeared in both the Hebrew and the Latin edition. These were corrected by Marius de Calasio, a Franciscan friar, who published a four volume folio Concordantiae Sacr. Bibl. Hebr. et Latin. at Rome, 1621, much enlarged, with proper names included. Another concordance based on Nathan's was Johann Buxtorf the elder's Concordantiae Bibl. Ebraicae nova et artificiosa methodo dispositae, Basel, 1632. It marks a stage in both the arrangement and the knowledge of the roots of words, but can only be used by those who know the massoretic system, as the references are made by Hebrew letters and relate to rabbinical divisions of the Old Testament. Calasio's concordance was republished in London under the direction of William Romaine in 1747-1749, in four volumes folio, under the patronage of all the monarchs of Europe and also of the pope. In 1754 John Taylor, D.D., a Presbyterian divine in Norwich, published in two volumes the Hebrew Concordance adapted to the English Bible, disposed after the manner of Buxtorf. This was the most complete and convenient concordance up to the date of its publication. In the middle of the 19th century Dr Julius Fürst issued a thoroughly revised edition of Buxtorf's concordance. The Hebräischen und chaldäischen Concordanz zu den Heiligen Schriften Alten Testaments (Leipzig, 1840) carried forward the development of the concordance in several directions. It gave (1) a corrected text founded on Hahn's Vanderhoogt's Bible; (2) the Rabbinical meanings; (3) explanations in Latin, and illustrations from the three Greek versions, the Aramaic paraphrase, and the Vulgate; (4) the Greek words employed by the Septuagint as renderings of the Hebrew; (5) notes on philology and archaeology, so that the concordance contained a Hebrew lexicon. An English translation by Dr Samuel Davidson was published in 1867. A revised edition of Buxtorf's work with additions from Fürst's was published by B. Bär (Stettin, 1862). A new concordance embodying the matter of all previous works with lists of proper names and particles was published by Solomon Mandelkern in Leipzig (1896); a smaller edition of the same, without quotations, appeared in 1900. There are also concordances of Biblical proper names by G. Brecher (Frankfort-on-Main, 1876) and Schusslovicz (Wilna, 1878).
A Concordance to the Septuagint was published at Frankfort in 1602 by Conrad Kircher of Augsburg; in this the Hebrew words are placed in alphabetical order and the Greek words by which they are translated are placed under them. A Septuagint concordance, giving the Greek words in alphabetical order, was published in 1718 in two volumes by Abraham Tromm, a learned minister at Groningen, then in the eighty-fourth year of his age. It gives the Greek words in alphabetical order; a Latin translation; the Hebrew word or words for which the Greek term is used by the Septuagint; then the places where the words occur in the order of the books and chapters; at the end of the quotations from the Septuagint places are given where the word occurs in Aquila, Symmachus and Theodotion, the other Greek translations of the O. T.; and the words of the Apocrypha follow in each case. Besides an index to the Hebrew and Chaldaic words there is another index which contains a lexicon to the Hexapla of Origen. In 1887 (London) appeared the Handy Concordance of the Septuagint giving various readings from Codices Vaticanus, Alexandrinus, Sinaiticus and Ephraemi, with an appendix of words from Origen's Hexapla, not found in the above manuscripts, by G. M., without quotations. A work of the best modern scholarship was brought out in 1897 by the Clarendon Press, Oxford, entitled A Concordance to the Septuagint and the other Greek versions of the Old Testament including the Apocryphal Books, by Edwin Hatch and H. A. Redpath, assisted by other scholars; this was completed in 1900 by a list of proper names.
The first Greek concordance to the New Testament was published at Basel in 1546 by Sixt Birck or Xystus Betuleius (1500-1554), a philologist and minister of the Lutheran Church. This was followed by Stephen's concordance (1594) planned by Robert Stephens and published by Henry, his son. Then in 1638 came Schmied's , which has been the basis of subsequent concordances to the New Testament. Erasmus Schmied or Schmid was a Lutheran divine who was professor of Greek in Wittenberg, where he died in 1637. Revised editions of the were published at Gotha in 1717, and at Glasgow in 1819 by the University Press. In the middle of the 19th century Charles Hermann Bruder brought out a beautiful edition (Tauchnitz) with many improvements. The apparatus criticus was a triumph of New Testament scholarship. It collates the readings of Erasmus, R. Stephens' third edition, the Elzevirs, Mill, Bengel, Webster, Knapp, Tittman, Scholz, Lachmann. It also gives a selection from the most ancient patristic MSS. and from various interpreters. No various reading of critical value is omitted. An edition of Bruder with readings of Samuel Prideaux Tregelles was published in 1888 under the editorship of Westcott and Hort. The Englishman's Greek Concordance of the New Testament, and the Englishman's Hebrew and Chaldee Concordance, are books intended to put the results of the above-mentioned works at the service of those who know little Hebrew or Greek. Every word in the Bible is given in Hebrew or Greek, the word is transliterated, and then every passage in which it occurs is given - the word, however it may be translated, being italicized. They are the work of George V. Wigram assisted by W. Burgh and superintended by S. P. Tregelles, B. Davidson and W. Chalk (1843; 2nd ed. 1860). Another book which deserves mention is, A Concordance to the Greek Testament with the English version to each word; the principal Hebrew roots corresponding to the Greek words of the Septuagint, with short critical notes and an index, by John Williams, LL.D., Lond. 1767.
In 1884 Robert Young, author of an analytical concordance mentioned below, brought out a Concordance to the Greek New Testament with a dictionary of Bible Words and Synonyms: this contains a concise concordance to eight thousand changes made in the Revised Testament. Another important work of modern scholarship is the Concordance to the Greek Testament, edited by the Rev. W. F. Moulton and A. E. Geden, according to the texts adopted by Westcott and Hort, Tischendorf, and the English revisers.
The first concordance to the English version of the New Testament was published in London, 1535, by Thomas Gybson. It is a black-letter volume entitled The Concordance of the New Testament most necessary to be had in the hands of all soche as delyte in the communicacion of any place contayned in ye New Testament.
The first English concordance of the entire Bible was John Marbeck's, A Concordance, that is to saie, a worke wherein by the order of the letters of the A.B.C. ye maie redely find any worde conteigned in the whole Bible, so often as it is there expressed or mentioned, Lond. 1550. Although Robert Stephens had divided the Bible into verses in 1545, Marbeck does not seem to have known this and refers to the chapters only. In 1550 also appeared Walter Lynne's translation of the concordance issued by Bullinger, Jude, Pellican and others of the Reformers. Other English concordances were published by Cotton, Newman, and in abbreviated forms by John Downham or Downame (cd. 1652), Vavasor Powell (1617-1670), Jackson and Samuel Clarke (1626-1701). In 1737 Alexander Cruden (q.v.), a London bookseller, born and educated in Aberdeen, published his Complete Concordance to the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, to which is added a concordance to the books called Apocrypha. This book embodied, was based upon and superseded all its predecessors. Though the first edition was not remunerative, three editions were published during Cruden's life, and many since his death. Cruden's work is accurate and full, and later concordances only supersede his by combining an English with a Greek and Hebrew concordance. This is done by the Critical Greek and English Concordance prepared by C. F. Hudson, H. A. Hastings and Ezra Abbot, LL.D., published in Boston, Mass., and by the Critical Lexicon and Concordance to the English and Greek New Testament, by E. L. Bullinger, 1892. The Interpreting Concordance to the New Testament, edited by James Gall, shows the Greek original of every word, with a glossary explaining the Greek words of the New Testament, and showing their varied renderings in the Authorized Version. The most convenient of these is Young's Analytical Concordance, published in Edinburgh in 1879, and since revised and reissued. It shows (1) the original Hebrew or Greek of any word in the English Bible; (2) the literal and primitive meaning of every such original word; (3) thoroughly reliable parallel passages. There is a Students' Concordance to the Revised Version of the New Testament showing the changes embodied in the revision, published under licence of the universities; and a concordance to the Revised Version by J. A. Thoms for the Christian Knowledge Society.
Biblical concordances having familiarized students with the value and use of such books for the systematic study of an author, the practice of making concordances has now become common. There are concordances to the works of Shakespeare, Browning and many other writers.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)