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SACRED HERMENEUTICS

DEVELOPED AND APPLIED;

INCLUDING

A HISTORY OF BIBLICAL INTERPRETATION

FROM THE EARLIEST OF THE FATHERS

TO THE REFORMATION.

BY

SAMUEL DAVIDSON, LL. D.

AUTHOR OF LECTURES ON BIBLICAL CRITICISM.

Προηγουμένως πρόσεχε τῇ τῶν θείων γραφῶν ἀναγνώσει· ἀλλὰ πρόσεχε,
πολλῆς γὰρ προσοχῆς ἀναγινώσκοντες τὰ θεῖα δέομεθα.--ORIGEN.

EDINBURGH:

THOMAS CLARK, 38 GEORGE STREET.

LONDON: HAMILTON, ADAMS, & CO. - DUBLIN: CURRY & CO.

M DCCC XLIII.

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PREFACE.

THE following work is intended to complete the plan which the writer proposed, when publishing his Lectures on Biblical Criticism. Having prepared the way for the interpretation of the sacred volume by describing the principles on which the text is adjusted, it remained for him to unfold the general rules that should guide the Biblical expositor in ascertaining and presenting the true meaning. Such a system of Hermeneutics has accordingly been attempted. The fundamental principles, constituting the theory of interpretation, have been laid down and exemplified. As it would have been comparatively useless to state naked precepts apart from the mode in which they should be applied in exegesis, numerous examples are given, which may lead the inquiring student to a right apprehension of the extensive operation of a few hermeneutical laws.

The volume is published under the impression that such an one was needed. It is true, that there are various books on Hermeneutics in the English language, but none of them is constructed on the plan which the author regards as best adapted to the subject. They are unnecessarily brief, encumbered with a multiplicity of rules, deficient in examples, objectionable in arrangement, or partially antiquated. A course has been pursued differing in several respects from that of other writers—a course

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