One Year Graded Septuagint Reading Plan

It’s the time of year when conscientious types start thinking ahead about their next year of bible reading (and how it’s going to be better than this year). With that in mind, it seems appropriate to post a reading plan of my own design. One for the Septuagint, of course.

Like many of my recent side projects, this plan grew out of my work with Greg Lanier on Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition (Hendrickson 2018).

We have been really pleased over the past several weeks to see the enthusiastic reception of the Reader‘s Edition. It’s garnered a lot of positive attention in various outlets in terms of both production and content. Here are some examples from around the blogosphere:

Zwinglius Redivivus
Abram K-J
Exegetical Tools
Evangelical Textual Criticism
Books At a Glance
There is even a pretty lengthy unboxing video and a shorter one.

Amidst all this discussion, one question has been raised fairly often: Where should I start?

The Plan and the Ranking Index

In an effort to help answer this question, I have drawn up a one year reading plan for working through the Septuagint from easier portions to harder portions of the corpus. I explain the nitty-gritty details on the first page of the plan, which you can view and/or download below.

The short and sweet version is that there are two-hundred and forty readings grouped in fives, so that you can read a portion of text (usually ten to twenty-five verses) every day of the week in 2019 with four built-in weeks off. To be clear: this plan does not make you read the entire Septuagint in one yearIt is a “selective” graded reading plan.

I realize that most of the people interested in something like this are probably already reading their Greek New Testament and (hopefully) Hebrew Bible daily as well. So I erred on the side of shorter readings just to remove convenient excuses to avoid reading this important corpus!

Please share this reading plan freely!

We are also happy to provide the actual ranking index that we produced over the course of the project.

Septuagint Difficulty Ranking Index

And for some more detail on the Twelve Prophets corpus, here’s an index with each book ranked:



As I discuss in the reading plan introduction, we generated this index based on a raft of data that we collected along the way or extracted from the electronic version of the Rahlfs-Hanhart base text. Hopefully we will be refining it even further in the months and years ahead.

SBL Conference Audio

If you want to geek out more about the Septuagint, you can listen to the SBL paper that Greg and I co-presented last month with this link (see also here).






  1. Dear Will,

    Thanks so much for this! It is interesting to compare your ranking of the various books with the conclusions in my dissertation on where books fall on the “free” to “literal” range.

    Thanks again, and may your readers be many!


  2. As I have read some parts of the new testament, it would be good to have the same index for NT to compare. Is Genesis harder than Luke ???

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