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Search Criteria for Analyzing Author's Style

Joe Weaks

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Here's a "higher level" question for the language board. I do some papers and projects examining the style between sections of text. For example, the speeches in Acts in contrast with the narrative in Acts. I maintain lists of search criteria whose results among each set of text is compared with one another. In this way, you can look at final tallies, do some correlation statistics numbers, and come up with things like "Stylistically speaking, Luke is more like Mark than it is like Matthew."

I thought some might enjoy having a look at the criteria I use most commonly... it should be clear what I'm looking for in each instance. I'd very much like to see other suggestions added.


Search Criteria for a Grammatico-Structural Analysis

of the Rhetorical Style in the Speeches in Acts



I=Infinitive and Participles



C=Clauses and Phrases

O=Particles and Other

Vicinity searches (And/OR) reflect those within same clause.


V1 [VERB present]

V2 [VERB future]

V3 [VERB imperfect]

V4 [VERB aorist]

V5 [VERB perfect]

V6 [VERB pluperfect]

V7 [VERB optative]

V8 [VERB imperative]

V9 [VERB second imperative]

V10 [VERB third imperative]

V11 [VERB aorist imperative]

V12 [VERB subjunctive]

V13 [VERB second subjunctive]

V14 [VERB subjunctive] <NOT> ean

V15 [VERB middle]

V16 [VERB present middle]

V17 [VERB future middle]

V18 [VERB imperfect middle]

V19 [VERB aorist middle]

V20 [VERB perfect middle]

V21 [VERB pluperfect middle]

V22 [VERB passive]

V23 [VERB present passive]

V24 [VERB future passive]

V25 [VERB imperfect passive]

V26 [VERB aorist passive]

V27 [VERB perfect passive]

V28 [VERB pluperfect passive]

V29 [VERB first]

V30 [VERB first singular]

V31 [VERB first plural]

V32 [VERB first present]

V33 [VERB first future]

V34 [VERB first imperfect]

V35 [VERB first aorist]

V36 [VERB first perfect]

V37 [VERB first pluperfect]

V38 [VERB second]

V39 [VERB second singular]

V40 [VERB second plural]


I1 [VERB participle]

I2 [VERB future participle]

I3 [VERB aorist participle]

I4 [VERB present participle]

I5 [VERB perfect participle]

I6 [VERB passive participle]

I7 [VERB aorist passive participle]

I8 [VERB infinitive]

I9 [VERB future infinitive]


I11 [VERB infinitive] <NOT> <PRECEDED BY> [ARTICLE]

I12 ([ARTICLE] [VERB infinitive]) <OR> ([ARTICLE] [Particle] [VERB infinitive])

I13 [ARTICLE] [VERB participle]

I14 [VERB participle] [ARTICLE]

I15 [VERB participle] <NOT> <PRECEDED BY> [ARTICLE]

I16 eimi <FOLLOWED BY> <WITHIN 3 Words> [VERB participle nominative] <NOT> [ARTICLE nominative]

N1 [NOUN nominative]

N2 [NOUN genitive]

N3 [NOUN dative]

N4 [NOUN accusative]


N6 kai [NOUN]

N7 (kai [NOUN nominative]) <PRECEDED BY> <WITHIN 3 Words> [ARTICLE nominative]

N8 (kai [NOUN genitive]) <PRECEDED BY> <WITHIN 3 Words> [ARTICLE genitive]

N9 (kai [NOUN dative]) <PRECEDED BY> <WITHIN 3 Words> [ARTICLE dative]

N10 (kai [NOUN accusative]) <PRECEDED BY> <WITHIN 3 Words> [ARTICLE accusative]

N11 [NOUN vocative]

N12 [iNTERJECTION] [NOUN vocative]

N13 [NOUN singular vocative]

N14 "*e"@[NOUN vocative]

N15 [NOUN vocative] [NOUN vocative]

N16 "andres"@[NOUN vocative]

N17 "andres adelfoi"

N18 "andres" [NOUN vocative]



P2 [PRONOUN correlative]

P3 [PRONOUN demonstrative adjectival]

P4 [PRONOUN demonstrative substantival]

P5 [PRONOUN indefinite]

P6 [PRONOUN interrogative]

P7 [PRONOUN possessive]

P8 [PRONOUN reflexive]

P9 [PRONOUN relative]

P10 [PRONOUN personal intensive]

P11 [PRONOUN personal]

P12 [PRONOUN personal first]

P13 [PRONOUN personal first singular]

P14 [PRONOUN personal first plural]

P15 [PRONOUN personal second]

P16 [PRONOUN personal second singular]

P17 [PRONOUN personal second plural]

P18 [PRONOUN personal third]

C1 ei <FOLLOWED BY> [VERB indicative]

C2 ei <FOLLOWED BY> [VERB optative]

C3 ean

C4 [PREPOSITION genitive]


C6 [PREPOSITION accusative]

C7 [PREPOSITION] (men, de, gar, oun)

C8 [PREPOSITION] <Within 2> [NOUN] (men,de,gar,oun)

C9 [VERB passive] <AND> upo

C10 [VERB passive] <NOT> upo

C11 en

C12 eis

C13 ek

C14 epi

C15 pros

C16 dia

C17 apo

C18 kata

C19 meta

C20 peri

C21 upo

C22 para

C23 uper

C24 sun

C25 pro

C26 anti

C27 ana


O1 de

O2 kai

O3 men

O4 te

O5 [CONJUNCTION continuative]

O6 [CONJUNCTION correlative]

O7 [CONJUNCTION disjunctive]

O8 [CONJUNCTION interrogative]

O9 [CONJUNCTION copulative]

O10 [CONJUNCTION inferential]

O11 [CONJUNCTION explanatory]

O12 [CONJUNCTION adversative]

O13 [CONJUNCTION causal]

O14 [CONJUNCTION conditional]

O15 [CONJUNCTION locational]

O16 [CONJUNCTION nominal]

O17 [CONJUNCTION comparative]

O18 [CONJUNCTION result]

O19 [CONJUNCTION concessive]

O20 [CONJUNCTION temporal]


O22 [PARTICLE alternating]

O23 [PARTICLE indefinite]

O24 [PARTICLE interrogative]

O25 [PARTICLE emphatic]

O26 [PARTICLE negative]

O27 [PARTICLE comparative]

O28 [PARTICLE subjective]

O29 [PARTICLE modal]

O30 "idou"




For you info, I compile the data using scripts that automate the process. The script will

  1. Copy the search criteria onto the clipboard
  2. Jump to Accordance and paste the criteria in
  3. Do the search for Mark (or whatever text)
  4. Copy the results from an analisis window
  5. Go to the Results document and paste this result
  6. Do the same for Matthew (or whatever text)
  7. Repeat for as many Range samples as I want
  8. Return to the Criteria Source document, Copy the search criteria on the next line and repeat process

The result is a table of information suitable for comparison across different Range Samples.

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The result is a table of information suitable for comparison across different Range Samples.




How about a snapshot of the resulting table so we can see what you end up with?

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I put a fuller description of the whole methodology complete with examples of the tables on my blog. I didn't want to go too far astray in the forum here. What I'm most interested in is what sophisticated grammatical and syntactical search strings are folks using in Accordance (with a string search or a construct search).

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That was very interesting and helpful. Thanks for sharing that.

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