Question: Please explain to me how to use the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia, the critical edition of the Biblical text based on the Leningrad Codex.
Answer: I suggest you consult the following brief summary by Dr. Marc Brettler (Professor of Biblical Studies at Brandeis University) of how to use Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS). This 2-page guide is found on the Scholarly Bible Editions section of his home page. Limitations of Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia are summarized in Dr. William H. C. Propp’s Guide to Biblical Research, revised and updated by Dr. Jeffrey H. Tigay.
Some of the more complete guides to BHS mentioned by Brettler, Propp and Tigay are:
Scott, William R. A Simplified Guide to BHS: Critical Apparatus, Masora, Accents, Unusual Letters & Other Markings, 2nd ed. (1990) BS715 1977c
Wonneberger, Reinhard. Understanding BHS: A Manual For The Users of Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (1984). REF BS178 W582 1984
A more recent guide is: Kelley, P. et al. The Masorah of Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia: Introduction and Annotated Glossary (1998) BS718 K38 1998.
For broader reference: the JTS Library’s Research Guide to Jewish Studies: Bible identifies key texts, editions, commentaries, translations and reference books in the field of Biblical Studies.