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Visualizing Cross References

Jim Darlack posts about showing Bible cross references graphically using a scatter plot (via Logos Bible Software Blog).

We thought we’d share with you what a few such visualizations would look like.

Old Testament Citations in the New Testament

This chart shows, at a verse level, where the New Testament cites the Old Testament. You can see clusters in the Law, Psalms, Isaiah, and Minor Prophets.

Chart showing New Testament citations of the Old Testament, with the NT on the y-axis and the OT on the x-axis

See a large (3200-pixel-wide) version of the above chart.

All Cross References

The below chart shows all 80,000 cross references found in the ESV Classic Reference Edition.

These cross references come in four types, which appear in different colors on the chart:

  1. Direct citations (red)
  2. References to words and phrases (gray)
  3. Thematic references (blue)
  4. Less-direct references (green)

Most cross references point to nearby passages: thus the central axis. You can particularly see lots of cross references in the Psalms (near the middle of the chart) and the New Testament (the upper right). Revelation references to Genesis are in the upper left.

The chart is largely symmetrical, which you’d expect in a good cross reference system: referenced verses should (for the most part) point to the verses referring to them.

Chart showing New Testament citations of the Old Testament, with the NT on the y-axis and the OT on the x-axis

See a large (3200-pixel-wide) version of the above chart. Also download a layered Photoshop file (.psd, 12 MB). You need Adobe Photoshop to open it.

Want More?

Download the data behind these charts. This zip file also contains the PHP file we used to generate the plot.

March 29, 2006 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 10:06 am | (5) Comments »

5 Comments

  1. [...] Graphing the Word at the ESV Bible Blog. [...]

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  3. Wrapping Up The Week is a semi-weekly feature of Postscript Posthaste where I put those miscellaneous links you need to read and I don’t have time to comment on. It’s the stuff that falls into the “a little something for everybody”

    Trackback by Wrapping Up The Week: Putting Things in Perspective — January 18, 2007 @ 4:22 pm

  4. The ESV Blog has an interesting post on graphic visualizations of cross references.

    Trackback by Cross References — January 18, 2007 @ 4:22 pm

  5. Graphing the Word at the ESV Bible Blog.

    Trackback by Un-Type-ical Analysis — January 18, 2007 @ 4:22 pm

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