Encyclopaedia Biblica/Nebaioth-Nettles

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Encyclopaedia Biblica
Thomas Kelly Cheyne and John Sutherland Black
see Encyclopaedia Biblica for other articles, typographic issues, links to PDF copies, and public domain status


(AV in Gen. ; fl Tin, no?; NABAiooG, NABAIOTH], b. Ishmael, Gen. 25:13 (NAlBeoop [E])36 3 (NABAI60P [>]), 1 Ch. l2:9, Is. 60:7. A North Arabian nomad people, mentioned with KEDAR [q.v.], just as the Nabaiti are mentioned in Assyrian inscriptions with the Kidrai and the Aribi. See NABATAEANS, and cp ISHMAEL, 4(1), also Glazer, Skizze, 2z66/. , Hommel, AHTzjf, (who connects the name with Nebo, on the analogy of Ashtaroth, Anathoth).


(L^33 ; NABAAAAT [X c - am e- inf -], NABAAAT [I-], BS*A om. ), a Benjamite town, named with HADID and LOD, Neh. 1134. Now Beit Nebald, situated on a low hill, 3.5 mi. NE. of Lydda, and nearly 2 mi. N. of Hadid. See Rob. BR?,y>\ GueYin, Sam. 2:67-68; PEFM 2:296.


(033, cp Sab. ^Xt233 B33O7K ; NABAT, NABA6 [BAL]], the 'father' of JEROBOAM I. [q.v.] (1 K. 11:26, 12:2, 12:15 etc.), but properly a clan name of the type of Ishmael, Jezreel (see below).

Neubauer (Stud. Bib.\22i) connects it with NABOTH [q.v.], the confusion of a and n being not impossible, and suggests that Nebat and Naboth may both be connected with NEBAIOTH [q.v.], the N. Arabian Nabaiti ( = JV33) of Ashur-bani-pal, and the 1B33 of the Nabatsean inscriptions (see NABATAEANS). We might almost as well compare the Babylonian Nabatu of the inscriptions of Tiglath-pileser III., Sargon, and Sennacherib, 2 who are Aramaeans. True, the above Sabaean parallels suggest a different explanation: '[God is] splendour' ; cp Ass. nabatu, 'to shine' (Del. Prol. 98). But we must perhaps not be too confident of the originality of the formation with el, 'God'.

T. K. C.


(133), a Babylonian deity (Is. 46:1, [B Theod. Aq.], NeBOYC [Symm.], AAftON Nabu, the patron of Borsippa, is meant. The proximity of Borsippa to Babylon naturally led to the association of Nabu with the still more popular Marduk (MERODACH). In the later theological system Nabu became Marduk's son. Every New Year's day the son paid a visit to his father, on which occasion the statue of Nabu was carried in solemn procession from Borsippa across the river, and along the main street of Babylon leading to the temple of Marduk ; and in return the father deity accompanied his son part way on the trip back to E-Zida [the name of Nabu's temple at Borsippa]. 1 With the Mandaeans and Harranians Nabu was the deity corresponding to Hermes or Mercury ; with the Babylonians, too, he was closely connected with the planet Mercury. One of the ideograms connects his name with nabu, 'to call, name, proclaim'. He was reckoned the originator of the art of writing on tablets. According to Gunkel- the mention in Ezek. 9:2 of a supernatural being (one of six) in human form, 'with a writer's inkhorn at his side', is suggested by the descriptions of Nabu, who is not only the god of wisdom, but the herald of the gods (hence his name Papsukal, supreme, or sacred, messenger). His consort was named Tashmitum, with whom ASHIMA [q.v. ] is by some identified. Whether we may venture to assume that the name of this Babylonian god attached itself to the Moabite and Judahite towns called Nebo, and to the mountain known as Nebo, and also entered into some personal names such as BARNABAS (for Barnebus?) and MACHNADEBAI, seems to the present writer doubtful. It seems more probable that mutilation has taken place in some or all of these cases, and that Nebo conies in the case of Mt. Nebo from Negbu (see NEBO ii. , 2), and in the case of the other names from Nadabu (an old ethnic name ; see NADAB). Cp the identification of the Moabite Nebo with NADABATH. See BABYLONIA, 26.

T. K. c.


(133, NABAY [BAFL]).

1. The old theory.[edit]

Nebo in P is the name of the mountain from which Moses surveyed the promised land, and where he died (Dt. 32:49-50, 34:1). It is also mentioned in the itinerary (Nu. 33:47) as a place before which the Israelites encamped, in the mountains of 'the ABARIM' (q.v. ) - a plural noun which is commonly taken to mean the NW. part of the Moabite plateau with Mt. Nebo. Among the ridges by which this great plateau descends to the Jordan valley there is one which specially draws attention by a headland, 5 mi. SW. of Heshbon, and 9.5 mi. due E. of the NE. end of the Dead Sea, to the flat top of which, crowned by a ruined cairn, the name Neba is attached. 3 By R (Dt. 34:1) Mt. Nebo is identified with the 'top (or, as some think, headland) of the Pisgah', which D2 , and probably also J, regarded as the mountain of Moses' death. About a mile from Neba are the ruins (Byzantine) of Siaghah, and half a mile to the SW. the ridge ends in a project ing spur called Ras Siaghah, the slopes of which fall steeply on all sides to the Jordan valley and the Dead Sea (Conder, Heth and Moab, 132-133); it is usual to identify this headland with 'the Pisgah' (see PISGAH).

The view from both points is nearly the same ; but the Ras Siaghah commands a fuller view of the Jordan valley beneath. It is admitted, however, by all that the description of Moses survey in Dt. 34 1^-3 does not entirely fit the prospect from any of the Moabite moun tains. Conder says

If we make the simple change of reading towards instead of unto in the cases of Dan and the western sea ... the whole account reads as correctly as that of an eye-witness ; but it is certain that Dan (if the site near Banias be intended), and the utmost, or hinder, or most western sea, cannot be visible from Nebo to any mortal eye (Heth and Moab, 135).

Driver naturally enough passes over this improbable suggestion, but thinks (Deut. 420) that 'the terms of Dt. are hyperbolical, and must be taken as including points filled in by the imagination, as well as those actually visible to the eye', whilst Dillmann, Wellhausen, and others regard the whole description as a later in sertion which spoils the simplicity and naturalness of the original narrative. Lastly, W. F. Birch, being dis satisfied with the views of English scholars known to him, surmounts the difficulties by proposing new sites for Dan, the 'hinder sea', and Zoar, assuring us that if we will only identify Pisgah with Tal'at el-Benat, the biblical description will be found to be literally true (PFQ, 1898, pp. 110-111).

1 Jastrow, Rel. of Bab. and Ass. 127.

2 'Der Schreiberengel Nabu im AT u. im Judenthum', Archivf. Rcli^ions-wiss. 1(3)294-300.

3 This identification accords with the statement ot tus. (OS 28293) that Mt. Nebo (i>a/3av) was 6 R. mi. W. of Heshbon. Yet, until quite recent times, it has been usual, following Seetzen, to identify Nebo with the Jebel 'Attarus, about 10 mi. to the S. Against this see Tristram, Land of Israel (1866), p. 240.

2. A new theory.[edit]

Certainly the last-named writer seems to be correct in requiring the description to be taken literally. 1 It is essential that Moses should be compensated for his exclusion from the Promised Land by at least a sight of it in its full extent (cp Dt. 3:27), and we are expressly told that Yahwe showed it to him, and (Dt. 34:7) that his eye had not grown dim from age. Dillmann s suggestion may be plausible ; the text, as it stands, has peculiarities, and these, to critics of the text as it stands, may seem to point to a later editor. If, however, there are traces in Ex. and Nu. of an underlying story of the Israelites pre-Canaanitish period which differs in important respects from that which lies before us on the surface (see MOSES, 16), we are justified in examining the text of Dt. 34:1-3 rather more closely. The result of such a searching criticism is that Moses, according to the primitive story, no more drew his last breath on the traditional Mt. Nebo than his brother Aaron did on the traditional Mt. Hor. The corruptions of the text presupposed in the following attempt to restore the original (see Crit. Bib.), which the late narrators transformed, may all, it is believed, be justified by parallel cases of the same kind elsewhere.

And Moses went up from Arabia of Musri to the top of the mountain of the Negeb of Jerahmeel [fronting Jerahmeel]. 2 And Yahwe showed him Jerahmeel as far as Dan, and all Tappuhim [the land of Jerahmeel and Musri), all the land of Judah as far as the Jerahmeelite sea, :i and the Negeb of Jerahmeel [the land of Jerahmeel, the land of Musri].

This was, in fact, the land, the fairest part of which the spies of the Israelites (surely two, as in Josh. 2:1) had, according to primitive tradition, explored, and which Moses, according to the same tradition, surveyed before his death from a prominent mountain on the border of the Jerahmeelite Negeb. The mountain may, for shortness, have been sometimes called !3;rin, Mt. Negbu ; its full name was the Mountain of the Negeb of Jerahmeel.

1 He is also partly right, as will be seen, in supposing the sea to be the Dead Sea i.e., the original story meant this, though not the story as transformed in the traditional text.

2 The words in square brackets are to be regarded as glosses. For the reading ^NcrtT instead of njDDri cp MEPHIBOSHETH, PASEAH ; for CTtlBn instead of jriSJ cp NAPHTUHIM ; and for VKOIW instead of inT see JERICHO, 2.

3 The true original name of the Dead Sea; see SALT SEA. For the reading S.NDnTrt DVT for Jlinxn D rt, cp inx aS J/ for ^NDriT in Ezra 2:31.

There are three other passages which, when critically emended, confirm the view which is here taken. These are Nu. 21:20, 23:14, 23:28, and Dt. 32:49.

(a) Nu. 21:20. We can now supplement the articles BEER and NAHALIEL. The stations mentioned are, most probably, Beer-jerahmeel, Bamoth, the top of the Pisgah. The third of these, however, has really a fuller title. As Gratz has seen, K lri ( 'the valley' ) is probably miswritten for 1]] n. Following the parallel passage, when corrected as above, we should read - and from Bamoth to the slopes of the mountain of the Negeb of Jerahmeel, which looks forth towards the highlands of Edom. JD B TI. 1 ke jlO e" in Ps. 68:7 [68:8], is probably a corruption of DIN .Tib-.

(b) Nu. 23:14. 'And he took him to the highlands (nib) of Zophim, to the top of the Pisgah'. So the text stands. Zophim, however (O SIX), should probably be Missur (IlltD), and the Pisgah should be Jerahmeel.

(c) Nu. 23:28. 'And Balak took Balaam to the top of the PEOR, that looks forth upon the desert'. So according to MT. But 'the Peor' (")ij>Sn) has, most probably, been corrupted out of 'the mountain of Missur' CNJtD), and 'the desert' (fO trn) should be 'the highlands of Edom' (CtN .TIC )- Conder's account of the view from his 'cliff of Peor' (Heth and Moab, 142) must not tempt us to follow him. Balak was probably not a Moabite, but a Misrite (see ZIPPOR).

(d) Dt. 32:49. 'Go up to this mountain of the Abarim, to Mt. Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, which fronts Jericho'. So MT. But 'the Abarim' should probably be the Arabians (O lny); 'Moab' should be 'Missur' ; 'Jericho' should be 'Jerahmeel'.

We have now to ask how the geographical requirements of all the passages referred to can be most satisfactorily met. The mountain, it appears, was in the. Negeb; it was NE. of Kadesh-Jerahmeel (Kadesh-barnea ); it 'looked forth' towards Edom (cp Nu. 20:16) ; it commanded a view of the Negeb of Jerahmeel as far as the southern Dan (i.e., probably Halusah ; see SHECHEM, ZIKLAG), and of Judah (the early, diminutive land of Juclah) as far east as the Jerahmeelite Sea (i.e., the Dead Sea). Even if it be true that the Moses clan itself did not take Zarephath (Sebeita?), but left this to a kindred clan, we may still venture to place the mountain not far from Zarephath. Very possibly it is some part of the extensive mountain plateau called Magrah, which, though intersected by several broad wadies, runs northward, without any break, to a point within a few miles of Wady es-Seba , where it is divided by Wady er-Rahama (cp jerahme'el) from the mountains of that name (E. H. Palmer; cp NEGEB). There are certainly different points in this great plateau from which impres sive views might be obtained both towards Edom and towards the Negeb of Jerahmeel and Judah. Thus the interest of the Negeb is considerably heightened by the results of a not merely negative, but reconstructive, criticism. See PISGAH. T. K. c.

1 The notice in OSC^ 283 06 rests upon a confusion of Nebo with Nobah (Nu. 32:42), which goes back to LXX


(133, N&BAY)- a hil1 town taken b Y the Reubenites with Heshbon, Elealeh, etc. (Nu. 32:3 [v. 38 A /3a/uw [banoo], F t>a.pw [neboo]; BL om.], 33:47, 1 Ch. 5:8. Omitted in the Reuben list, Josh. 13:15). Mesha (inscr. l. 14) boasts of having taken it from Israel and exterminated its people (for Mesha's spelling of the name [mj], see text of inscr. [MESHA]). It remained Moabite, and is mentioned with the above places in the lament over Moab (Is. 15:2 Jer. 48:1, 48:22). Nebo was a hill town (Is. I.c.), and situated, perhaps, near the mountain of the same name (but see NEBO, MOUNT), although Eus. (OS, 28893) speaks of a ruined Nabau, 8 R. mi. S. of Heshbon, 6 R. mi. to the W. of which he locates the mount. 1

2. A city of Judah, the 'sons' (citizens) of which are mentioned after the 'men' of Bethel and Ai, Ezra 2:29 (vafiov [B], - w [A], -/Sou [L] ; in 1 Esd. 5:21 LXX om.). In the || passage, Neh. 7:33, they are called 'the men of the other Nebo' (-irw 133, va^ia. aap [B, cp Sw.], i>a.j3[e]ta tKarov [NA], vaj3av [L]). Very possibly 13J is a corruption of m:, 'Nadabu' (cp NEBO, i. ); -IRK, 'the other', in Neh. 7:33, is, according to Crit. Bib., a misunderstood fragment of SKCITV 'Jerahmeel' 1 ; if so, it need not have been accidentally introduced from v. 34, as Meyer (Rntst. 149) suggests ; but cp L. The commune of 'Nebo' ( Nadabu ?) is represented in the list of those with foreign wives (see EZRA i. , 5 end ; cp ii. , I? [*]). Ezra 10:43 ("a/3ou [BXA], -pav [L]), and appears by error in Neh. 10:19 [10:20] as NEBAI, RV NOBAI (Kt. <aij ; Kr. 2-3). T. K. c.


p-VKVP^i 1 Jer. 2l:2 etc., and so Jos. and Strabo N&BOKoApOCOpOC- Abydenus NABoyKoApOCOpOC, corresponding with Bab. form [below]; incorrectly > SiM"}D ! Q3 > ~]%) - Dan. 1:1 etc. [see BOB], and so LXX & N&BoyXoAONOCOp [with various scribal corruptions], -NOCOpOC Jos. [see Niese, Index]}, the Babylonian monarch Nabu-kudur-usur, son and successor of Nabopolassar on the throne of Babylon. He was second of the name, Nabu-kudur-usur I. being of the Pashe dynasty (about 1139-1123 B.C.). Nabopolassar had secured the throne of Babylon, during the years of weakness and dissension in Assyria which followed the death of Asur-bani-pal, apparently by aid of the Chaldean party in Babylon. While the power of Media was rising to the N. of Assyria, the astute founder of the neo-Babylonian Empire married his son Nebuchadrezzar to Amuhia, daughter of Cyaxares, king of Media. 1 Hence, when the crisis came and the enemy closed in upon Nineveh, Babylon was able to claim alliance with Media and at least lent a moral support to the overthrow of Assyria. After that event had destroyed the balance of power in Mesopotamia, the Medes or Manda nominally held the northern kingdom, while Babylonia retained independ ence. The decline of Assyrian power was always Egypt's opportunity in Syria. Necho II., perhaps as early as 608 B. c. , had begun to advance along the coast ; he was vainly opposed by JOSIAH [q.v.], and by the time that Assyrian resistance (606 B. c. ?) collapsed he was probably master of all Syria. The power of Media may have been exhausted by the struggle to capture Nineveh ; at any rate it was Nebuchadrezzar (Berossus- Josephus, c. Ap. 1:19) who successfully opposed the Egyptian king at Carchemish, 605 B.C. 2 How far Median troops assisted we do not know ; but either the alliance of Babylonia with the detested Manda had be come very strong or the Manda were otherwise en grossed by the rising Persian power. The powers in Assyria must have been either actively allied or singularly helpless for Babylonian troops to operate successfully in Syria and beyond. In all probability the remnant of the Assyrian troops took service under Nebuchadrezzar rather than with the Medes.

It was on this expedition that Nebuchadrezzar was brought into contact with the kingdom of Judah. On the difficulties in 2 K.. 24:1+ (cp 2 Ch. 36:16) see JEHOIAKIM. The inscriptions are unfortunately silent.

Nebuchadrezzar's succession to the throne of Babylon seems to have been accomplished without difficulty, and he entered on his long reign of forty-three years, 604 B.C. to 561 B.C. He had probably recalled the greater part of his troops from the W. , leaving only garrisons and governors in the more important cities, after the Assyrian model. His absence in Babylon and the necessity of watching events in Media and Elam, where Teispis the Persian made himself independent as king of Anshan, 600 B.C. , obliged Nebuchadrezzar to leave the W. alone. Relieved of the pressure, Egypt recovered, and under its new king Apries-Hophra began to adopt the usual policy of inciting the West to rebellion. How far Nebuchadrezzar had his hands tied by the troubles in Media is not clear ; but, either by active assistance to Persia or by maintaining a powerful frontier guard, he was able to preserve peace in Babylonia ; and when his warlike neighbours had once more quieted down he was able to reach Palestine without danger to his line of communications. A hostile power in Assyria, or a too active ruler in Elam, must have paralysed an advance to Syria.

1 Abydenus in Eusebius, Chron. 1:9.

2 Jer. 46:2, 2 K. 23:29. See EGYPT, 68. [Some doubt, however, rests upon the battle of Carchemish. See JEREMIAH (BOOK), 14, PROPHET, 45.]

Affairs in Judaea had been in a very unsettled state for some time. How JEHOIAKIM [q.v. ] rebelled, and left a heritage of woe to his son and successor JEHOIACHIN [q.v. ], who after a three months reign surrendered to the Babylonians, is told elsewhere (cp ISRAEL, 41). Nebuchadrezzar had then arrived in person (2 K. 24:11) to direct the siege of Jerusalem. He captured the city in 597 B.C. This was only an event in the general plan of reducing the W. to order ; Tyre and Sidon remained. Egyptian influence was always strong there, and the traders must constantly have carried sedition into the K. unless Tyre was friendly. The traders could not be interfered with ; they were too valuable. But Tyre would be a rich prize, and once in Babylonian hands the source of much mischief would be suppressed. Sidon was soon dealt with : the Assyrian kings had made that easy ; but though Nebuchadrezzar prosecuted the siege of Tyre for thirteen years (under Ithobaal II., see TYRE), 585-572 B. C. , he could not take it (see BABYLONIA, 66 ; PHOENICIA, 20). This siege was the outcome of a fresh outburst of activity on the part of Egypt. Nebuchadrezzar having settled affairs in Judea had returned to Babylon with his captives and spoil. What kept him there so long, eight or nine years, we do not fully know. Troubles in Elam, the death of the king of Ansan and the division of Media between the first Cyrus, his elder son, and Ariamna the younger son, probably needed careful watching, if not diplomatic interference. 1 But when Nebuchadrezzar was again free, he seems, according to the views of some, to have met and defeated the army of Apries, 587 B.C., and proceeded to a further invasion of Egypt (see EGYPT, 69 ; BABYLONIA, 66). Like the Assyrian invasions of Egypt, this was a punitive expedition ; and though fairly claiming to be a conqueror of Egypt, Nebuchadrezzar could not govern it. Zedekiah had relied on Egypt (Ezek. 17:15) and rebelled, only to bring on his land an invasion that culminated in a second siege and capture of Jerusalem in 587 B.C. Zedekiah fled, but was captured (Jer. 39:5), and, having witnessed the death of his children, was blinded and carried to Babylon. The city of Jerusalem was sacked, the temple and palaces destroyed by fire, and the walls made a heap of ruins. The country was placed under the Babylonian governor Nabu-zer-iddin.

That Egypt was not long under Nebuchadrezzar is clear from the fact that five years later the Babylonian governor on his way to Egypt (Jos. Ant. 10:9:7) carried off more captives from Jerusalem, Jer. 52:30. This was in the twenty-third year of Nebuchadrezzar's reign. Almost the only historical inscription of this king 2 speaks of a further expedition to Egypt in the thirty seventh year of his reign. Amasis seems to have been able to hold the country outside the Delta. Lydia was growing in power, and Nebuchadrezzar may have influenced Media to attack Lydia ; at any rate he (Labynetus? Herod. 1:74), with the king of Cilicia, mediated between them in 585 B.C., after the battle of the Halys (see BABYLONIA, 66). On the theory that he may have at one time conducted operations against Kedar, to account for Jer. 49:28, 49:33, see JEREMIAH (BOOK), 20, vii.

Unfortunately, in the fragments above noted, we possess no proper history of Nebuchadrezzar. The task of reconstruction is laborious, and must remain unsatisfactory until further discovery. That his annals found a native historian is almost certain. The inscriptions which have been preserved chiefly commemorate his pious restoration of the temples and ruined cities of his land. Temple restorations in Sippar, Kutha, Erech, Larsa, Ur, and many other minor cities are recounted at a length which bears eloquent witness to his power and the vitality of the religious feelings of his people. Babylon itself benefited above all. It became almost a new city. New streets were laid out, the Euphrates banked, new walls and an outer line of defence erected, which rendered the place impregnable. The new palace, the famous hanging gardens (if Nebu chadrezzar s work), and above all the restored temple of Bel (see BABYLON, 5), were his pride and his great claim to remembrance. Sir H. Rawlinson stated that he had examined the bricks of the ruins of not less than a hundred cities or temples near Bagdad, and scarcely found any that did not bear the stamp of Nebuchadrezzar son of Nabopolassar.

The references to Nebuchadrezzar in DANIEL [q.v.] and the later classical stories are not necessarily without foundation ; but his name became the centre of much that is probably pure romance. For example, the story of his madness receives no support from the fact that lycanthropia has been attested else where. 1 His own inscriptions speak only of a four-year-long suspension of interest in public affairs, which may not be a reference to his malady, though tradition of something of the kind may have lent verisimilitude to the account of it in Daniel.

The text of his inscriptions will be found in KB 82, pp. 10-70, and C. J. Ball, PSBA 11 124^ c. H. W. J.

1 Perhaps at this time Nebuchadrezzar made himself master of Susa, and restored its Ishtar image carried away to Erech by Ashur-bani-pal (?), when Susa was under Elamite supremacy.

2 Published by Strassmaier, Nbkd. 194.


RV Nebushazban (fafE na), one of the officers of the king of Babylon (Jer. 39:13; om. BNAQ, N&BoyCAZABAN [Theod. in Q m *-])- It appears to be the Ass. nabu-shizib-anni, i.e., 'Nebo delivers me', a name actually borne by the son of Necho I., king of Egypt, in token of his vassalage to the king of Assyria.


(pNllT-np, Bab. Nabu-zar-iddin; N&Boyz&pAAN ; but -A&p in 2 K. 2:58 [A]; Nabuzardan], chief of the body-guard to Nebuchadrezzar ; see 2 K. 2:58, 11:20, Jer. 52:30, and, on his special relations to Jeremiah, Jer. 39:11, 40:2, 40:5. The name is good Babylonian) Nabu-zar-iddin, 'Nabu has given a seed', and occurs often. Cp ISRAEL, 42 ; JEREMIAH, 2.

c. H. w. j.


(so AV in. 2 Ch. 35:20-22, Neco RV ; elsewhere PHARAOH-NECHOH, RV PHARAOH-NECOH, but PHARAOH- NECHO, RV PHARAOH-NECO in Jer. 46:2; 1]] and [in 2 K. 23:29, 23:33-35.] ri-?, [and Manetho] Nex<"<i, Vg. Nechao\ Herod. Diodor. Nexios, Jos. Nexavs, other MSS Ne^acos; 2 on the Egyptian form and the Assyrian Niku, see below]).

Son of Psametik I. , second king of the 26th or Saitic dynasty (610-594). 3 His royal names are, Nem-eb-re* ,* 'renewing the heart of the sun-god', Nk'w* (phonetically something like Ne-ko-u, read Nekou). The second or personal name was taken from his grandfather Necho (I.), known in the Assyrian inscriptions as Ni-ku-u, Niku, of Sai and Mempi, the most powerful of the Egyptian nomarchs at the time of the Assyrian conquest (Nechao in Manetho ; cp Herod. 2:152). Like Psam(m)etik, it seems to be of Libyan etymology ; 6 almost all Egyptian monarchs of that period descended from officers of Libyan mercenaries. 7

Necho II. was, evidently, one of the most active and enterprising Pharaohs ; but he had too short a reign and lived under too unfavourable political constellations to accomplish much. His attempt at conquering Syria from the crumbling Assyrian empire during its last struggles is referred to in 2 K. 23:29-24:7 = 2 Ch. 35:20- 36:4 (with free additions). This expedition against the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates (2 K. 23:29) was undertaken early in Necho's reign (609-608) ; as is well known, King Josiah of Judah opposed his march ; he did this, not from pious rashness, but as a vassal of Assyria. On the question of the locality where he fell, see EGYPT, 68, and JOSIAH, 2, and cp MVAG 3:54- Three months after the battle of Megiddo (the name is correct) Necho performed divers authoritative acts as suzerain of Judah. Jehoahaz was carried in chains from RiBLAH, 1 and Jehoiakim had to pay a heavy fine. See JEHOAHAZ, JEHOIAKIM. The allusion in Jer. 47:1 to the time when Pharaoh smote Gaza is to be referred to Necho's expedition. 2 Necho s Syrian domination (of which a stone found in Sidon or Byblus 3 is the only monument) came to an end, three or four years later (about 605), when the king of Babylonia, as successor to Assyria, reclaimed the Syrian provinces. The army of Necho suffered a complete defeat by NEBUCHADREZZAR, at that time the Babylonian crown- prince. The Jews, probably, still continued to cherish hopes of Egyptian opposition to the Babylonians, but in vain (2 K. 24:7).

1 See MADNESS, and cp Wi.

2 Wiedemann, Gesch. /Egypt. 628, quotes the mutilation Nebad; Cramer, Anted. Par. ii. 20423, Nechaob; Cedren. i. 197 12, Bekk., Necheito 1 i 195 9.

3 The statement of Herodotus is confirmed by Apis-stelae. The number of years is corrupted from sixteen to six in Africanus and Eusebius, to nine in Syncellus.

4. [Cartouche goes here]

5. [Cartouche goes here]

6 It is hardly identical with a name of the earliest period N-kw, as Griffith has suggested (Xz, 34, 1896, 50).

7 Schafer, AZ, 33 [1895], 116, on very inadequate grounds, assumed Ethiopian descent for that Saitic family.

On Necho's most important public work the digging of the canal through Goshen to the Red Sea - see EGYPT, 68. The work certainly was not abandoned, 4 otherwise Necho could not have kept a strong fleet on the Red Sea (Herod, 11). The inscriptions of Darius show too that the 'Suez-canal' of this king (Herod. 4:39, Strabo, 804) was only a restoration of Necho's work which the sand of the desert had filled in, as happened with various later attempts at connecting the Nile and the Red Sea. 5 The sending of an Expedition under Phoenician leaders around Africa (Herod. 4:42) confirms the fact that Necho had great plans in Africa, of which we know little. 6

The great canal seems to have left the king little time for other constructions. Some traces of building in Memphis (where also during his lifetime an Apis-bull was buried) have been found. Necho's tomb in Sais seems to have been destroyed together with his mummy last century. 7 w. M. M.

1 Cp Winckler, AOF 1 504.

2 See GAZA. On the statement of Herodotus (2159), see Wiedemann, Clio, 566 _/C

3 Published by Griffith, PSBA 16 91. On the vague possibility of finding the Egyptianised name of a king of Byblus in it, see W. M. Muller in Ml AG\ 190.

4 On the improbability of an oracle as the reason, cp Wiedemann (Gesch. Ag., 627), who, however, believed in the abandonment and ascribed it to political difficulties.

5 See W. M. Muller, MI AGS 152.

6 Herodotus places the digging of the canal before the Syrian expedition. The opposite is more probable.

7 Wiedemann, 1 1.

8 As an instance of the sacredness of such ornament may be cited the verse in the Babylonian Deluge -story where the goddess Ishtar swears by the necklace (lit. 'jewel of my neck' ) which her father had given her (Jastrow, Kel. of Bab. and Ass. 503, cp Jensen in A /?6i, 241 //. 164 f.~).

9 For a discussion, see BASKETS, n. i ; Che. JBL 18 2o8f. [1899].


A compound term like 'necklace' is not to be expected in a version of the Bible which retains the Hebrew colouring. Still it will be convenient to bring together under this heading the different Hebrew words which are used for ornamental chains (see CHAINS) such as we commonly call necklaces, or for neck-ornaments in general.

i. Strings of cylinders (see RING, i) are represented on Assyrian sculptures. 8 Similar strings of precious stones, pearls, or beads are described in Cant. 1:10 as D mn haruzim (AV 'chains of gold' ; RV 'strings of pearls', LXX bp^LffKoi [ormiskoi]), and Q lin (AV 'rows', RV 'plaits', LXX rpvy6vfs [trigones]), Cant. 1:10. Probably 9 the 'apples of gold' (Toy, 'golden fruits' ) in Prov. 25:11 (a corrupt passage) should give place to 'a string of pearls, or beads', D inn nin ; D mn means properly not 'strings', but 'beads (or the like) strung together' (cp Kon. , 2:1:136). For beads, however, we may, especially in Cant, 1:10, substitute 'silver ornaments' ; 1 others (e.g., Renan, Siegfr. ) prefer 'strings of coral', or (Now.) coral and metal.

2. Neck-ornaments also took the form of 'crescents' (so RV D Jiw), Is. 3:18, a Judg. 8:26-27 (AV 'round tires [mg. , ornaments] like the moon' ; LXX Aq. /uijc/trjcoi [meniskoi], but LXX{A} aiuvuv [sioonon] and LXX{L} a7ro<r. [apos] in Judg. ; Sym. Kov/jiLuv [kosmioon] in Judg. , pavidKai [maniaki] in Is. ; Vg. lunulae ; Aram, and Syr. X7no - i.e. , moon, like ino in Talm. ). These were, perhaps, amulets ; crescent-shaped charms are still a favourite Oriental protection against the evil eye. The crescents were worn both by women (Is., I.c. ; cp 3) and by Midianite men (Judg. 8:26 ?); also by camels (v. 21 ?). In fact, riding animals are still often decorated with pendent metal plates.

Budde, however, well remarks that the words, 'Gideon arose, and slew Zebah and Zalmunna, and took the crescents that were on their camels necks', read very strangely. His remedy is to suppose that the last clause is an addition suggested by v. 26b, in its original form (Bu. there omits all but 'beside the crescents that were about their camels necks' ). But how came this particular term Q jine (appropriated to an ornament of the ladies of Jerusalem) to be used here? The more natural term would have been mp3y> which in fact the later editor of v. 26 adopts. The only course left is to emend the text. The original text of v. 21 must have had "afftt JTnJJlfnviK nj3 l D.TV1I3, 'and he took the bracelets which were upon their arms' (see. Crit. Bib.). Gideon, in fact, took these royal insignia for himself as king. See GIDEON.

3. pjy, andk. Cant. 4:9 (0^ua), Prov. 1:9 (/c\ot6j Xpwreos), Judg. 8:26+ (irfpidffj.a [merithema] [B], K\. XP- [AL]), perhaps a neck-ornament, not always a necklace (plural in Prov. I.c.). In Cant. 4:9 pjy is certainly a dittographed fry. EV's rendering, 'with one chain of thy neck' is unjustifiable. Read, 'Thou hast terrified me, my sister, with thine eyes (cp 65) ; thou hast terrified me, thou hast struck me with blindness' (o liapa). See Crit. Bib.

4. 112)3, kumaz (ejun-Ad/aoi< [emplokion]), Ex.35:22, Nu. 31:50+,t perhaps a necklace constructed of little golden discs ; so RVmg. (see ARMLET).

5. Vn, htili Cant. 7:2 (D NVn ; op/xiovcos [ormiskos]), Prov. 25:12 (on LXX see n.), 3 Hos. 2:15 [2:13] rrSn (xafldp/iiia [kathormia]), perhaps a neck-ornament. See the Lexicons.

6. T3"l, rabid, Gen. 41:42 (Aoio? [kloios]; Aq. Sym. p.ai/ia(o)s [maniakes]), Ezek. 16:11 (KaOffna [kathema]), and, by emendation, 2 Ch. 3:164 (Bertheau, Ki.). Cp the golden collar bestowed by the sovereign as a reward, like our orders ; see 7:1 and cp 1 Esd. 3:6, and JOSEPH, 5, c.

7. MDrDn (Kr. NTJSn, hamnika, /u.afiaKr)s [maniakes]), Dan. 5:7, 5:16, 5:29 +. A Persian loan-word in Jewish Aramaic and in Syriac. Polybius (2:31) already recognised that the word was not Greek. A chain of honour (cp 6). I. A. -T. K. C.


(N6KCOAAN [BA]), 1 Esd. 5:37 = Ezra 2:60 NEKODA, 2.


(D^nSiT^N BhM ; Dt.lSnf). See DIVINATION, 3.


(rVTtl, 27, 'Yahwe has given or apportioned', or an expansion of O lJ, 'a Nadabite' [Che.]; cp NADAB), son of king Jeconiah ; 1 Ch. 3:18 UeNeeei [B], N&B&&IAC [A a ], N&A& Bi& [L]). For another Nedabiah see ANANIAS, 9.

1 If we read (with Gra.) nipyj f r JinpJ (Cant. 1:11), v. 11 will repeat v. 10, and will explain that the Q llD were of gold, the Q TTin of silver. I. A.

2 In Is. 3:18 we also meet with ornaments called 'little suns' (D D 3B = D D > D^ > , see Konig, 2:1:144 ; but LXX e^.7rAoKia [emplokia] EV 'cauls', EVmg. 'networks' ; so Ges.-Bu.). These, however, can hardly have been necklets.

3 tv bpfiiiTKut (Tap&iov in v. ii is probably, the original render ing of QriD Vna ( Sni), for which <cai o-apStoi/ TroAvreAe s now appears. Compare GOLD (on criD)-

4 The lower border of the capital of a pillar is meant.

5 Xpuo-oCi/ i//6AAioi/ o <t>opov<ri n-epl Tas x P a S Ka <- T v rpax^\ov 01 FaAarat. Cp Krauss, Griech. u. Latein. LehnvuSrter in Talm., etc., 1 5.




(33|n and 3J3 [Gen. l3:3, 1 S. 30:1]; EV The South, but rather a technical geographical term meaning 'the dry land', see GEOGRAPHY, 2 ; H epHMOC, Gen. 12:9, 13:13, Nu. l:3, 17:22 [18:23], Dt. 34:3, Josh. 12:8 [L] ; A,^ Gen. 13:14, 20:1, 24:62 etc. ; NAfeB, Josh. 10:40 ( NABAI, B) Jer. 32:44 [39:44], 33:13 [40:13]. 'Land of the Negeb', Gen. 20:1, 24:62 [AV 'south-country' ], Josh. 15:19 [AV 'south-land' ] ; RV in all three passages, 'the land of the south' ). Perhaps intended by the phrase the land of Ngb in Egyptian historical inscriptions (WMM As. u. Eur. 148).

1. Meaning of Negeb.[edit]

Great misapprehension is inevitably caused by the above renderings of the AV and RV. This has been wel1 shown by Wilton and E. H. Palmer, but may be pointed out once more.

Can it be really true that the spies sent, as we are told, from Kadesh, went up 'by the south' in order to get to Hebron ? The reader of the EV of Nu. 13:22 (cp 17) will think so until he learns the geographical fact that Hebron lay to the N. of Kadesh. He will also find the pointless phrase 'the south' (or in RV 'the South' ) made parallel to the hill-country and the lowland in the geographical descriptions in Dt. 1:7 and Josh. 10:40-41, and will again and again miss the true geographical colouring which a well-defined geographical term would have given.

Even if a doubt be permissible about the term Shephelah (RV 'lowland' ) for the 'sloping moorland' of Judah towards the Philistine Plain, there can be none as to the propriety of introducing the term Negeb (as Bennett has done in his Joshua), which is even more indispensable than the universally recognised technical term synagogue.

What, then, is the Negeb? It is the southernmost of the natural divisions of Palestine - the steppe region which forms the transition to the true desert ; and apparently it derives its name from its deficiency of water, the only abundant springs being in a few of the larger wadies. There is, however, a considerable amount of moisture which has infiltrated into the soil in these larger wadies, so that here at least the camels can always find pasturage. We know, moreover, that though now so deficient in verdure from the want of irrigation, the Negeb was, as lately as in the Byzantine age, much better off. We are also assured that between this district and the edge of the Tih plateau there is a more barren region which must anciently have borne to the then fertile region of the Negeb a relation similar to that which is at present borne to Palestine by the 'Negeb' in its barrenness. It is plain that except where the word Negeb is used laxly for the south (see EARTH [FOUR QUARTERS], i), there is no other course open to us but to adopt the technical term 'the Negeb'.

1 As H. P. Smith acutely points out, David did not raid the three Negebs spoken of on the same occasion. When Achish asked where David had been raiding, he answered, 'Against the Negeb of Judah, or against that of the Jerahmeelite, or against that of the Kenite'.

2 The Negeb, 19.

3 The Desert of the Exodus, 426.

2. The five Negebs.[edit]

In the following survey we are concerned almost entirely with the Negeb of pre-exilic times. The early post-exilic community did not occupy the Negeb any more than the Philistian Plain (cp Zech. 7:7 [LXX dpeivri [e oreine]], and the prophetic prospect in Ob. 20). We have first to consider the several names, of somewhat uncertain reference, given to different parts of the Negeb. In 1 S. 27:10 we read of the Negeb (LXX v6ros [notos]) of Judah, that of the Jerahmeelite, and that of the Kenite ; in 1 S. 30:14 of the Negeb (LXX J^TOS [notos]) of the 'Cherethite' and that of Caleb. 1 In Nu. 13:29, however, the land of the Negeb (LXX VOTOJ [notos]) is said without qualification to belong to the Amalekite. This statement is perplexing. The truth appears to be that phoy, 'Amalek', is really a miswritten form of SNDHT, 'JERAHMEEL'. From the probable evidence of names we learn that the Jerahmeelites at one time spread at least as far N. as the Wady Rahameh (cp HORMAH), in which name both Wilton 2 and E. H. Palmer 3 have found an echo of the name Jerahmeel, and to Kadesh-'barnea' (Kadesh-Jerahmeel) i.e. , 'Ain Kadis, and the Judahite Carmel (for this name too is perhaps a corruption of Jerahmeel). The Jerahmeelites of Kadesh, however, appear to have been dispossessed at an early date by the men of Judah, on whom, as Judg. 3:13 tells us, they subsequently took their revenge (cp JERICHO, 2). Re venge indeed was a fundamental element of primitive life in these regions. Like David himself (who possibly came from 'Debir' on the border of the Negeb 1 ) we find the 'Amalekites' making raids upon the neighbouring country. The narrative in 1 S. 30:14 (MT) mentions as suffering from such a raid the 'Negeb of the Cherethite' and the 'Negeb of Caleb' (otherwise called, in v. 16, 'the land of the Pelishtim' [?] and the 'land of Judah' respectively). Thus we have five different Negebs, or districts of the Negeb, mentioned. It is our next duty to define, so far as the historical notices permit, the geographical content of these several phrases. The kinship between the populations no doubt places some difficulty in our way.

(a) The country of the Amalekites (Jerahmeelites) whom Saul is said to have overcome was between the Wady of Beersheba and the Wady of Misrim - i.e. , the Wady el-'Arish (see EGYPT, RIVER OF) - not including, however, the Negeb of the 'Cherethite'. 2 It is consistent with this that in 1 Ch. 4:39-40 (see JERAHMEEL, 4) the Jerahmeelites are said to have dwelt in Gerar (the Wady Jerur). Their centre may be presumed to have been the sacred well commonly but incorrectly called BEER-LAHAI-ROI 3 (q.v. , and cp ISAAC, JEHOVAH-JIREH), which may have been 'Ain Muweileh. 4 At one time, however, they must have spread farther N. (see above), and in the time of David we find 'cities of the Jerahmeelite' in the occupation of Judahites (1 S. 30:29). Doubtless they had various sacred meeting-places, such as the 'Ain Rahameh and especially the 'Ain Kadis (both visited by Rowlands). Ain Kadis is the En-mishpat (Gen. 14:7) at KADESH-BARNEA (Jerahmeel), unless indeed En-mishpat is an early corruption of En Sarephath ; at any rate Kadis is the famous Kadesh.

(b) The Kenites, whose Negeb is spoken of, came originally from Midian (Ex. 2:15-16 MT), or rather perhaps Musri (see KENITES) ; they were allied to the Edomite tribe of the Kenizzites. Indeed, in 1 S. 27:10, 30:29 LXX{BL} actually reads 'Kenizzite' where MT and LXX{A} have 'Kenite'. We may assume the Negeb of the Kenite (or Kenizzite) to have lain to the S. of the Negeb of Caleb (see d). This view accords with the statement in Judg. 1:16 that the Kenites joined the Judahites in a migration to 'the wilderness of Arad in the Negeb of Jerahmeel' (critically emended text ; see Crit. Bib., and cp KENITES). As the result we learn that the cities of the Jerahmeelite Negeb fell into the hands of the Israelites (Nu. 21:3a), more especially HORMAH (q.v.}, or rather Rahamah, a name which seems to have suggested the thought of the mercifulness (cm) of Yahwe to Israel. Here, therefore, the Kenites, or Kenizzites, being friendly to Israel, could safely dwell, and hence in 1 S. 30:29 the 'cities of the Kenites' are mentioned between the cities of the Jerahmeelites and the city miscalled in MT Hormah, but marked out by its true name as of Jerahmeelite origin.

One of the cities referred to - it is only a short distance on the way from Tell Arad to the Wady Rahameh - has still a record of its existence in the suggestive name Tell Milh (land r interchange), with which it is fair to identify the 'Ir ham-melah ( Ir Jerahmeel) mentioned in Josh. 15:62 (see SALT, CITY OF). Strictly, indeed, the Negeb of the Kenites was also the Negeb of the Jerahmeelites ; see again Judg. 1:10 (where cy, 'people', should be JffOy, 'Amalek' = 'Jerahmeel' ). The Kenites appear also to have occupied Beersheba. 1

1 See 3.

2 This appears from the emended text of 1 S. 15:7 (see TRLEM).

3 The geographical definitions in Gen. 16:7, 16:14 point away from the En-mishpat-sephathim at Kadesh-'barnea'. 'Beer-lahai-roi' has to he 'between Kadesh and Bered' ; Bered probably comes from 'Midbar Shur' - i.e., the desert of Shur (but cp Niebuhr, Gesch. 1:259). The site there is plainly marked.

4 'About 10 hrs. beyond Rohebeh (Ruhaibeh), on our road (i.e., 10 hrs. camel's pace), is a place called Moilahi (or Moilahhi), a grand resting-place of the caravans, there being water here, as the name implies ( ?). . . . Shall I not please you when I tell you that we found here Bir Lahai-roi?' Rowlands, in Williams, holy City, 1:465. A writer in PEFQu., 1884, p. 177 offers an impossible etymological theory for this Moilahhi. Rowlands further states that the Arabs from near Gaza called the well Moilahhi Kadesah, but that those of the country called it Moilfihhi Hadjar (Hagar). It is not often that local traditions are so well founded ! Here, too, is the 'site of a large and populous city' (Palmer, 356).

(c) The 'Negeb of the Cherethite' is usually explained as = 'Negeb of the Philistine', and this is plausibly supported by the apparent equivalence of Cherethites and Philistines in 1 S. 30:14, 30:16. It is no doubt hard to understand how the Philistines came to be found in the Negeb ; but Matthew Poole's Synopsis has an answer ready - 'the place pertained to the satrapy of Gaza' (!). The truth is, however, that just as nna (Cherith) has been regarded (see CHERITH) as a corruption of n]n7 (REHOBOTH), so VTID (Cherethite) may be a corruption of 'n]n7 (Rehobothite). The centre of the Negeb of the Rehobothites was no doubt the Wady er-Ruhaibeh 2 (see REHOBOTH). But this section of the Negeb also included ZIKLAG (1 S. 30:14) or rather Halusah 3 on the site still known as el-Halasa, west of the Wady er-Ruhaibeh, in a wady the upper part of which is called 'Asluj 4 and the lower Halasa, and the not less historic Zephath or ZAREPHATH [q.v.] i.e. , Sebaita or Esbaita, S. of el-Halasa, in the Wady el-Abyad. From Zephath it received the second title c nra px, land of the Zarephathites, though in the text of 1 S. 30:16, by transposition and corruption of letters, OTISI* has become n nc ?B. Pelishtim - i.e. , 'Philistines'.

(d) The 'Negeb of Caleb' was of course S. of Hebron, and included the sites of Tell Zif, Ma in, and Kurmul ; Nabal, who is connected with Maon and Carmel, was a Calebite (1 S. 25:3), and the name el-Kulab is still attached to a wady 10 m. SW. of Hebron. Other names may be added to the list from 1 S. 30:27-31, for David's 'friends', the 'elders of Judah', were of course his tribal kinsmen ; David's connection with the Calebites is so close that, in spite of tradition, we cannot help regarding him as a Calebite (see DAVID, i, n. 2).

(e) The Negeb of Judah was probably identical with that of Caleb ; the hills around Zif, Ma'in, and Kurmul are in fact the outposts of the hills of Judah. In 1 S. 30:16 the phrase 'the land of Judah' is an alternative for 'the Negeb of Caleb' in v. 14, just as the land of the Zarephathite [see c] in the same clause is equivalent to 'the Negeb of the Rehobothite' in v. 14. In 2 S. 24:7, however, the 'Negeb of Judah' must be understood in a large sense for the Negeb belonging politically to Judah, which, for the writer, extends to Beersheba. It should be remembered that David's bodyguard was (in our view) composed of Rehobothites and Zarephathites (in MT 'Cherethites and Pelethites' ). See REHOBOTH, PELETHITES. This implies that the Negeb from which David's warriors came was thoroughly absorbed into Judah. The list of places in the Negeb of Judah in Josh. 15:21-32 (P) may require a similar explanation. This need not prevent us from admitting that a larger section of the Negeb belonged, in post-Solomonic times, not to Judah but to Israel (see PROPHET, 6). The sanctuaries of the Negeb were largely resorted to by the N. Israelites, and Jeroboam II. seems to have recovered the Negeb for Israel (2 K. 14:28 ; for an emended text, see PROPHET, 7).

1 See 1 Ch. 4:11-12, where TEHINNAH (y.v.) is probably a cor ruption of Kinah (Kenite?) and IR-NAHASH (q.v.)of 'Beer-sheba'. The alliance of the Kenites with Caleb (Chelub) is also attested. ESHTON (q.v.) comes probably from 'Eshtemoh'.

2 Wilton (The Negeb, 21) deserves credit for connecting the Cherethite Negeb with the Wady er-Ruhaibeh, though he had nothing but geographical probability to guide him.

3 Targ. Jer.'s equivalent for Bered, but rather the true form for Ziklag, the current identification of which (see ZIKLAG) shows anew how greatly geography has suffered from an un critical view of the Hebrew text. Rowlands writes thus, 'Khalasa (ancient Chesil I think) must have been a large city the remains are very extensive heaps of stones and portions of houses, etc.' (Williams, 464).

4 'Asluj is connected by Rowlands (Williams, 465) with the name Ziklag.

3. Boundaries of the Negeb.[edit]

[detailed map of the Negeb goes here]

It is generally held that the NW. limit of the Negeb was a point S. of the present ed-Daharlyeh, a large village between es-Semu on the E. and 'Anab on the W. which is probably to be ideinified with Debir, or rather (in our view) Beth-zur (one of several places bearing the name ; see KIKJATH-SEPHER). This is a reasonable view, but must not be either supported or illustrated by the passage (Judg. 1:15) rendered in RV 'for that thou hast set me in the land of the south, give me also springs of water', because this passage is corrupt. The Debir or perhaps Beth-zur there referred to is not the 'Kirjath- sannah, that is, Debir' mentioned in Josh. 15:49, but the well-known BETH-ZUR (q.v. ) near Halhul, N. of Hebron, and the 'springs of water' which have played such a large part in the question as to the identification of the Debir of Josh. 15:49 are non-existent in a sound text. The only right basis of the perfectly legitimate assertion that ed-Dahariyeh is 'the frontier town between the hill-country and the Negeb', 1 is the observation of a physical fact. It is characteristic of the Negeb that the vegetation, meagre at the best, becomes almost completely dried up in the heats of summer, and that the deterioration of verdure begins to be visible S. of ed-Dahariyeh. As Conder says, 'the district of Debir is [at the present day] just the limit of the settled population and of culti vation'. 2 It was probably either here or at Carmel that Jesse lived and David passed his early youth ; 3 here, too, that Saul mustered his forces to go to war with 'Amalek' (1 S. 15:4; see KIRJATH-SEPHER, TELAIM).

The Israelites themselves, however, did not place the N. boundary at ed-Dahariyeh ( = MT's Debir) but at En-rimmon, otherwise designated Rimmon ( 'from Geba to Rimmon', Zech. 14:10) and probably called a&o Baalath-beer-rimmon, which is to be identified with Umm er-Rammamim, about 9 mi. N. of Beersheba, on a geographically important site (as Solomon, who appears to have fortified it, recognised) near the boundary line which separates the Terabin and Tiyahah territories on the S. from the Henady Arabs and the hill-country on the N.*

On the reading BAALATH-BEER-RIMMON, probably to be re stored in Josh. 19:8 and in 1 K. 9:18, see RAMATH OF THE SOUTH. This is, we think, the full name of the place otherwise called EN-RIMMON and (perhaps) AZMON. 5 'Rimmon' may be a popular corruption of 'Jerahmeel'.

On the S. and SW. the boundary line of the Negeb went by 'Kadesh-barnea' (Kadesh-Jerahmeel) and 'Hazar-addar' (Hazar-Jerahmeel) - i.e. , 'Ain Kadis and (probably) 'Ain Muweileh respectively. The authority 6 from which we obtain this information adds that the southern boundary line of the land of Israel passed on to 'Azmon - i.e. (as we have just seen), Hazar-rimmon, which is Umm er-Rammamim - and went round to the torrent course of Misrim, which is the well-known Wady el-'Arish. There is also a passage - of very late date, it is true, and often greatly misunderstood - in which the southern limit of the Negeb is fixed at a more northerly point than Kadesh - viz. , at Zarephath or Sebaita (Ob. 20, critically emended text), which appears to have been regarded sometimes as the most northerly city of Musri 7 (in N. Arabia; see MIZRAIM), sometimes as the most southerly city of the Negeb of Palestine.

This way of regarding Zarephath agrees with the specification in Josh. 11:17 of the southern boundary of the land conquered by Joshua as 'the bare mountain (EV, the Mt. Halak) that goes up to Seir', which Trumbull identities with the 'bare and bald rampart of rock which forms the northern wall of the Wady el- Fikreh' (Kadesh-barnea, 1895).

Summing up, we may say that the Negeb is an irregularly shaped tract extending from the hill-country of Judah on the N. to the wilderness of Zin (i.e., the Azazimeh mountains) on the S. , and from near the Dead Sea and the southern Ghor on the E. to the Mediterranean on the W. , and that in the character of its soil it forms a transition from the rich fertility of Canaan to the wasteness of the desert.

1 So GAS IIG 279.

2 PEf \\ 1875, p. 51.

3 Beth-zur, in our view, the true name of 'Debir', was perhaps also called Beth-el ("lli", sfir, and 7N, el, being synonyms for 'God' ), and 'Beth-el' mistaken for 'Beth-lehem'. It is, however, simpler to suppose that 'Bethlehem' in 1 S. 17:12, 17:15 as well as in Mic. 5:2 [5:1] (see MICAH [BOOK], 4 [e}) is a corruption of Beth-jerahmeel. Some place in the Negeb, perhaps Carmel ( = Jerahmeel), may be meant.

  • Wilton, 20.

5 LXX apparently had acreA^oji/a [aselmoona], (so FL in Nu. 34:4-5) where the final a. may be disregarded. A represents -\ ; the second -\ dropped out.

6 Nu. 34:4-5; cp Josh. 15:3-4. In spite of Wetzstein's geographical learning, his explanation of the southern boundary-line of Judah (Del. Gen.W, 586+) is very improbable. Without textual criticism no progress could be made. Cp KARKAA.

7 On the traditional error respecting this place-name see OBADIAH, ZAREPHATH. Note, too, in this connection that pTH, 'Zidon', in 1 K. 17:9 should probably rather be "Hlra, Missur - i.e., Musri in N. Arabia (see MIZKAIM). Zarephath was probably the first town in the Negeb entered by a traveller from Beersheba which belongs to Judah (1 K. 19:3), which was reckoned to the land of Musri.

4. Goshen or Geshur.[edit]

We must, however, bear in mind the limitations stated in Nu. 34:4-5 (see 3), and we must allow room

  • (a) for the tract of land in SW. Palestine, between the Negeb and the Shephelah, called 'the land of Goshen' (Josh 10:41,

11:16), and

  • (b) for a district between the Negeb proper and the edge of the Tih plateau which was less favoured by nature than the Negeb.

As to (a), to supplement what is said elsewhere (see GOSHEN, 2), it may be suggested here, not as an assured result, but as a probability, that [t^j (Goshen) is miswritten for 1^3 (Geshur?).

In 1 S. 27:8 we find the Geshurites and the Girzites (where one of the two names is obviously a doublet) mentioned beside the Amalekites - i.e., the Jerahmeelites - and in Josh. 13:2 the Geshurites beside the Philistines. It is difficult to find room both for Goshen and for the Geshurites or Girzites (Girshites?), and it is a simple expedient to identify them. The name 'Girshites' is probably a better form than either 'Geshurites' or 'Goshen'.

5. The Negeb of Musri.[edit]

As to (b), we may safely assume that this district belonged, as Kadesh and Zarephath may once have belonged to the kingdom of Musri in N. Arabia, and the still existing traces of the careful agriculture of its ancient inhabitants seem to show that it was not an unvalued possession. The Wady Mayin and the Wady Lussan (cp the name of the Roman station of Lysa in the Peutinger Table) were apparently the most thriving parts of this district, owing to the excellent wells in the former Wady and the admirably constructed dams in the latter. The Wady Lussan, it should be noted, is a little to the S. of the Wady Jerur, the Gerar of Gen. 20:1, 26:1, where Isaac had such large flocks and herds. We must not speak too positively, however, of the times of the Israelites ; but it is at least reasonable to suppose that this district was not worse off for vegetation then than the Negeb is at the present day. 2

1 On the use of the terms 'wilderness of Zin', 'wilderness of Paran', see ZIN, PARAN.

2 Palmer, ibid. 345 347. 3 Ibid. 392.

  • Ibid. 316^. 321 ; cp Trumbull, Kadesh-barnea, rtoff.

6. Wealth of the Negeb.[edit]

It is at any rate plain that in David's time the Negeb was in its way a comparatively rich country (see the notices in 1 S. 15:9, 29:9, 30:16), and for the Greek period we may perhaps claim the witness of the Chronicler (2. Ch. 14:14-15). These passages agree in speaking of the abundance of sheep, oxen, asses, and camels - the wealth of a pastoral people. No doubt the palmiest days of the Negeb were in the Byzantine period. We have not the means of contrasting the Byzantine cities with those of the pre-Roman age, though where the dwellings consist of rock-hewn caves, these are doubtless older than the masonry of the buildings. The nawamis, or beehive huts of stone, with which every hill-side is covered (cp KIBROTH-HATTAAVAH, TENT) are assigned by Palmer to pre-historic peoples ; 3 the duwars or stone-enclosures he compares with the rtnsn or 'nomad villages' of early Israelite times, which are distinguished in Josh. 19:8 from O'7y or 'cities'. 4

The same explorer gives us a vivid picture of the vanished prosperity of the Negeb (see Desert of the Exodus, pt. ii., chap. 5). His descriptions of the ruins of cities and of the remains of terraces, etc. , justify us in inferring that the later condition of this region was far from contemptible. There are, indeed, no grand remains at Kadesh ( 'Ain Kadis), and Beer-sheba is absolutely destitute of ruins ; but Rehoboth (Ruhaibeh), Zarephath or Zephath (Sebaita), and Ziklag (Halasa) are still represented by the remains of fine cities of a post-biblical age. Of Solomon's 'Tamar', or perhaps (see 3) Baalath-beer-Rimmon we have nothing but the probable site to point to ; the latter name may suggest that even in the relatively unfertile Negeb pomegranates (rimmon), may have flourished, unless indeed Rimmon is a popular corruption of Jerahmeel. That many of the strongly -embanked terraces at el-'Aujeh and elsewhere were once planted with fruit-trees, there can be no doubt.

Such a name as 'Anab - i.e., 'grape-cluster' is also thoroughly justified. The towers so frequent in the Negeb are evidently vineyard-towers (Is. 5:2), and Arabic phraseology still gives the name Tuleilat el-'anab, 'grape-mounds', to the small stone-heaps covering the hill-sides and valleys for miles, along which, anciently, vines were trained.

7. Eshcol.[edit]

The fact just mentioned throws considerable doubt on the common theory (see ESHCOL) that the Eshcol of Nu. 13:23-24 was at Hebron. The original tradition surely did not mean that Caleb brought the huge cluster of grapes, the pomegranates, and the figs all the way from Hebron. It was, probably, a journey of exploration in the Negeb that was originally meant, and the spies brought the fruit from the orchards and vineyards nearest to the camp.

'If Eshcol be at Hebron, we must either suppose that they brought the grapes through a grape-bearing country, or that they brought them to a Kadesh N. of Ain Gadis ['Ain Kadis] and situate at the present border of Palestine' (Palmer, op. cit. 353). The latter hypothesis is clearly unsuitable, as Palmer well points out. It is also not improbable that 'Nahum the Elkoshite' was really 'Nahum the Eshcolite', the Negeb being a veritable nursery of prophets (see PROPHET, tiff.).

Fully to understand the tradition of the 'spies' we must distinguish between its present and its original form. As it now stands, it seems to represent Eshcol as near Hebron. It is shown elsewhere (MAMRE, REHOBOTH), however, that 'Eshcol' may be a distortion of 'Halasah' and 'Hebron' in the original story relative to 'Eshcol' and the spies a corruption of 'Rehoboth'.

The narrative in Nu. 13:21-26 is composite, and vv. 21, 25, 26 are assigned to P, who apparently found 'Rehob', not 'Hebron', in his authority, and misunderstood it as meaning a northern Rehob (see REHOB), so that he had to allow 'forty days' ( = a long but indeterminate period) for the search of the spies. Rehoboth and Halasah naturally go together, and coming from the desert the spies might quite naturally be supposed to have called this region 'a land flowing with milk and honey'. [Wi. (Gesch. 2:40-41), however, maintains that the primitive tradition mentioned not Hebron but Kirjath-arba, which (cp MAMRE), like Rehob in v. 21, he places in the N., at or near Dan.]

We have done our best to explain the geography of the Negeb, mainly from a historical point of view. The task has been very difficult owing to the corruption from which (we believe) the place-names have so frequently suffered. The reader will tear in mind that one object of the present work is to contribute in some degree to the rectification of the details of biblical geography. Nowhere perhaps is so much rectification needed as in the case of the geography of the Negeb. The current identifications (e.g. , those of Ziklag, Brook Besor, Telaim, Bealoth, Hazazon-Tamar, Tamar, Ramath of the South, Hormah, Azmon, Karkaa, Madmannah, En-gedi [in Samuel], Ir-ham-melah) cannot be accepted. They are based on what we believe to be textual errors. Not only the geography but also the historical notices themselves relative to the Negeb need to be brought nearer to their original form. Some of these have already been considered here ; two more may be mentioned in conclusion,

  • (a) 2 Ch. 20, the account of the victory of Jehoshaphat over the Moabites, the Ammonites, and the Meunim. A plausible view of the main geographical points has been given by Conder (PEFQ, 1875, p. 70/) and Buhl (Pal. 97) ; it may be added here that in v. 16 the Chronicler perhaps wrote, 'the wilderness of Jezreel' ; if we should not rather emend 'Jeruel' into 'Jerahmeel', and suppose the recasting of an older narrative in which various place-names were different e.g. , 'Jerahmeel' for 'Jeruel', 'Kadesh' for 'Hazziz', and 'Kadesh-Jerahmeel' for 'Hazezon-tamar' (see TAMAR}. It should be noticed that in v. 2 En-kadesh is misread by the Chronicler as En-gedi. 1 See ZIZ, and cp L rit. Bib.
  • (b) 2 K. 14:7, Amaziah's victory over the Edomites. Here JOKTHEEL, [q.v.] should be read Jerahmeel. It seems that in spite of the favourite legend connecting the name Jerahmeel with the story of Hagar (see ISAAC), narrators went on devising fresh explanations of the name. One such is found in Nu. 21:3 ; another in 2 K. 14:7. So inextricably are legendary narrative and geographical fact interwoven ; so impossible is it to study geography without a critical view of the Hebrew documents and their contents !

8. Literature.[edit]

See especially Wilton, The Negeb or South Country of Scripture (1863); E. H. Palmer, The Desert of the Exodus, Pt. II. (1871): Trumbull, Kailesh-barnea (1884); ( .. Williams, The Holy 0^(1849), 463-468 (Note on Southern Horder of Palestine, with letter from J. Rowlands on his exploration of Kadesh and the surrounding country). T. K. C.

1 En-kadesh is misread in the same way in 1 S. 23:29, 24:1.

2 EC" f e " out owing to niB (corrupted from[ipjy] flEC ) which follows.

3 [The form is doubtful. See HACHALIAH. At any rate it springs from an ethnic name, and, if identical with Hilkiah, from one of the ethnics connected with the Negeb. Nehemiah, if=Naham, has a similar origin.]


(n33r^7), Ps. 61, tit. AV, but RV 'on a stringed instrument'. The Massoretes, however, took ru JJ (neghinath) to be in stat. constr. ; they connected it by the accents with TiiS, as if the phrase meant 'accompanied with David's playing on stringed instruments'. LXX, Sym. , Jer. , Tg. , render as if they read riirjja. These views are all impossible ; the text needs careful emendation ; see NEGINOTH. T. K. c.


eN YMNOic[6,Theod.];

6N y<\\MOlC [Aq.]; AlA Y&ATHpiOGN [Sym.]; in psalmis], Pss. 4 (eN Y &A/v\Oic), 6 (om. A), 54, 55, 61 (?), 67, 76 ; (titles), AV ; but RV 'on stringed instruments'. But nrjj does not mean 'a stringed instrument', nor is it used in the plural (in Ps. 69:13 [69:12] rnr.331 should be JUEb ). 2 mrJ3 (Xeginoth) is corrupted from m St? (Sheminith ; see PSALMS, 26, 26), and this from C prm (Ethanites). Thus in Ps. 6:1 (tit. } there is dittography. The prefixed preposition was evidently altered as a consequence of the faulty reading rvu j:. Observe that the psalm in Hab. 3 is inconsistent. It gives rnrje ^j; in v. i, but [ ] nirjJa in v. 19 (the title has by accident been divided); see HABAKKUK [BOOK], 8. m scrr^j; (or rather, nas n c v^y 'for the Sabbath-day' ) should be substituted. LXX in Hab. has ev rr/ (pSy avrov [en te oode autou]. See SHEMINITH, UPON ; and cp Music, 6. T. K. c.


(Jer. 29:24 etc. ). See SHEMAIAH (2).


(iVprn, 30, 62, 'Yahwe is consolation' [or, a consoler], but originally no doubt an ethnic name, cp NAHAM, NAHAMANI, and see note 3. Cl. - Ganneau reports a late Jewish name irvom [Sceaux et cachets Israelites, 1883] ; BNAL Nee/V\l&C [genit. NeeMlA I but in Neh. li, B c - m e- SU P- L, and in Neh. 1247 N c - a L, NeeMioy]; Nee/v\ioc [B in Ezra 22], NAIMI&C [i Esd. 540 B], NGMIAC [2 Mace. 136 V*]).

1. His enterprise.[edit]

1. B. Hachaliah, 3 a leader in the reorganisation of the land of Judah. We are in a favourable position for studying his career, because a large portion of the book which bears his name (Neh. 1:1-7:5, 11, 12:27-13:31) comes from a work of his own composition [which, however, we must not read with a blind belief in Nehemiah s infallibility]. He was one of the cupbearers of King Artaxerxes, i.e. , of the first king of that name l (465-425 B.C.) - [an important office - see CUPBEARER - which gave him great influence with the king]. It so fell out that while attending to his duties at the royal winter palace at Shushan or Susa, in the month of Kisleu or December, 445 B.C., he received a visit from a party of Jews from Judea, led by a kinsman of his own named Hanani, who told him of the sad condition of the Jews in 'the province' (Judah or Judasa), and of the defenceless state of Jerusalem. Greatly troubled by this news, he betook himself to prayer and fasting [and from the words of his prayer it appears, according to Kosters, that it was not to any recent calamity that Hanani referred, but to the old devastation by Nebuchadrezzar].

[This view of Kosters is rejected by We. (CGN, 1895, p. 170) and by Meyer (Entst. 56). With most recent critics they are of opinion that the wall and gates of Jerusalem were rebuilt by Ezra, and that their destruction (Neh. 13) was the work of the Samaritans (cp Ezra 4, Neh. 4:7) acting with the sanction of Artaxerxes I. It has also been held (Nold. Aufsiitze zur pers. Gesch. 5:6 ; Che. OPs. 71), that it stood in some connection with the revolt of the satrap Megabyzos (448 B. C. ), with which the Jews may, rightly or wrongly, have been suspected of complicity.

The latter theory, however, is too hazardous. If the Jews of Judea had been regarded as mixed up with this revolt, Artaxerxes would not have been so ready to accede to the wishes of Nehemiah ; indeed, Neh. 2:19 implies that up to Nehemiah's time the Jews had not committed any overt act of rebellion,2 and we may venture to suppose that the great king wished, through his Jewish courtier Nehemiah, to reward the Jews of Judaea for not having been drawn away from their allegiance by Megabyzos. As for the former theory, we cannot safely base anything on the narrative and official documents in Ezra 4, both of which are most probably fictional (see EZRA-NEH.), though Meyer and Sellin have vigorously defended their genuineness ; see also Winckler, AOF 2:210+

The prevalent opinion, which assumes that Ezra came to Jerusalem before Nehemiah, rests on an imperfect criticism of the compilation of the Chronicler, and has been rightly rejected by Marquart (Fund. 58) and Winckler (AOF 2,2if> f. ). To this it must be added

  • (1) that after Ezra's failure in respect of the mixed marriages we cannot understand how he should have succeeded in stirring up the people to restore the wall, and put an impediment in the way of fraternising with the Samaritans, and how, when Nehemiah takes up and not without difficulty, carries through the work of restoration, no mention should be made of Ezra (Neh. 12:36 has been tampered with, see 5); and
  • (2) that the conversation between Nehemiah and the king in Neh. 2 makes no reference to a removal of a royal prohibition to restore the walls. It is no answer to this that Artaxerxes was good-natured but weak. There is no evidence for this ; the manner in which he reached the throne certainly does not favour this view ; but cp ARTAXERXES, ad fin.
  • (3) The language of the Samaritans in Neh. 2:19-20, 3:33 [4:1] seems to imply that no previous attempt like that of Nehemiah had been made.

1 [The king under whom Nehemiah and Ezra lived must have been the first Artaxerxes ; otherwise the growth of the Pentateuch and of the Psalter is scarcely explicable. It is true, Marquart (Fund. 31) objects that if a son of Joiada was already married in 433 (Neh. 1328), Joiada s grandson Jaddua could not possibly have been high priest a century later under Darius III. But why need we take 'Darius the Persian' (Neh. 12:22) to be Darius III.? It is not to the Chronicler that Neh. 12:1-26 is to be assigned, but to an earlier writer. Jaddua may be an error for Joiada (emend v. 11-12 accordingly). Joiada, son of Eliashib, was apparently high priest in 433 (Neh. 13:28, where 'high priest' refers to Joiada ) ; his son 'Johanan' may well have been high priest in 424. Thus 'the reign of Darius the Persian' (12:22), corresponds to 'the days of Johanan b. Eliashib' (v 23). In Neh. 12:11 'Jonathan' should of course be 'Johanan' ( 'Jaddua' goes out). 'Johanan' in Ezra 10:6, if correct, must be a brother of Joiada ; but the name may be a mistake (due to the redactor of Ezra's memoir) for 'Joiada'. ]

2 [The expression is designed. Tattenai may have given reason for suspecting the Jews of a disloyal temper, which may, indeed, account for the sudden disappearance of ZERUBBAHEL (q.v.). More than this we cannot suppose, and persistent loyalty during the revolt of Megabyzos would wipe out previous suspicions.]

Not less untenable is the theory which has lately been revived by Sellin (Serubbabel, $\f. ; cp 197), viz., that the wall and gates had been restored by Zerubbabel under Darius I., but had shortly afterwards been destroyed, when the royalistic mos-ement centering in this prince collapsed (to this he finds an allusion in Ps. 89:40). Long ago (1854) Ewald (GVI (3) 4:156) proposed the same view, which he supported by the very same psalms as are appealed to by Sellin, viz., 44, 60, 74, 79, 80, 89 (Ewald adds 85, Sellin 83, 102) psalms which he had previously (with more plausibility) referred to the destruction under Bagoses related in Jos. Ant. 11:7:1. This, however, is connected with a historical theory respecting the career of ZERUBBABEL [q.v.], which has no evidence in its favour, and the view about the destruction of the walls is inconsistent with Zech. 2:4-5. Cp PSALMS (BOOK), 28, 32. We are now (1901) able to add that the author himself has withdrawn this theory (Studien zur Entstehungsgesch. etc., 2:181, 2:186). His present view is that the walls were being rebuilt under Cambyses (or Cyrus) when they were destroyed by the Samaritans (p. 182). Against this see (3) in the preceding paragraph.

Nothing therefore remains but to consider the claims of the theory of Kosters.

(1) That no recent destruction is referred to is plain from the prayer of Nehemiah. The great object before the mind of the suppliant is the return of the exiles to Jerusalem. Until the wall had been restored, and the community had adopted the same view of religious purity as was current among the Jews of the Dispersion, such a return was impossible. The first thing, there fore, was to get the wall restored. Had this been done earlier, a large body of exiles would have migrated before the time of Ezra. They did not so migrate, for Nehemiah evidently found no considerable Babylonian element at Jerusalem ; therefore the wall cannot have been rebuilt before the time of Nehemiah.

(2) The same result follows from the language of Hanani in Neh. 1:2-3. He does not indeed underrate the miserable condition of Jerusalem ; but the main point with him is the affliction and the insults suffered by its inhabitants. That is the novel element in the tidings which he brings. Shortly before Nehemiah's governorship the relations between the Jews and the Samaritans were becoming more and more strained. There was as yet no regular feud ; but the tendency to a feud was not wanting. There was an active, though not as yet a predominant, orthodox party at Jerusalem, and Sanballat and Tobiah 'had come to feel that the differences which parted them were greater than the resemblances which united them'. 1 They did not withhold taunts and insults, which were returned in good measure to them and to their Jewish sympathisers by Jewish prophetic writers (Is. 57:3, 65:1-5, 66:3). Hanani, doubtless, feared that worse things would follow, and attributed this to the want of a material barrier to intercourse between the unorthodox party in Jerusalem and the Samaritans outside. Hence, probably, the stress which he laid, when visiting Nehemiah, on the destruction of the wall (Neh. 13).

Both in Serubbabel and recently in Studien ii. Sellin controverts Kosters' interpretation of Neh. 1:3, where the Jews of Judaea are called 'the remnant that are left of the captivity' ( 3PM JO nNB 3 "WN D lXtfjn). Sebl ( 3!: ), according to Sellin, means the same as golah (rpia), 'those who had been carried away'. Kosters, however .(and so Marq. Fund. 35), takes the phrase to mean 'those who have escaped the deportation in the time of Nebuchadrezzar'. According to Sellin, Hanani implies that a considerable number of Babylonian Jews - Jewish captives ( 3B*) - had returned to Palestine, but (so at least in Serubbabel) that many of these had lost their lives in the troublous times of Zerubbabel - a very forced explanation. The true sense is shown by Ezra 9:7, 'we have been given up ... to the sword, to captivity, and to spoiling' (RV), where 'to captivity' clearly means 'to be carried' captive. Kosters' view is perfectly correct, and indeed is required by the preceding word peletah ( "TE 73), 'those who have escaped'. ]

For three months Nehemiah remained a prey to his own sad thoughts, and then his opportunity came. Artaxerxes one day questioned him about his depression, and Nehemiah, after secret prayer to God for help, laid his case before the king. Artaxerxes and his consort (who also was present) were favourable to the request, but desired that Nehemiah s leave of absence should be as brief as possible. It would seem, how ever, that he left Susa invested with the governorship of Judah for an indefinite period ; [though the text of 5:14 may perhaps require a closer inspection ; see 5]. Provided with letters to the governors of the region to be traversed, and with a military escort, Nehemiah in due course reached Jerusalem.

1 Jew. Rel. Life, 45.

2. Restoring walls.[edit]

Within three days from his arrival he addressed himself to his work. After making a nocturnal survey of the walls, secretly and almost unaccompanied, he began to stir up both rulers and people to take in hand the work of restoration. 1 This they declared themselves ready to do (2:11-18). Prompt action was taken, and not only Jerusalem, but also other places, such as Jericho, Tekoa, Gibeon, Mizpah, joined in the work ; high priest, priests and Levites, civil administrators, and heads of guilds, and even women, became each responsible for some part of the building (3:1-32).

[This passage, as well as the brief account of Nehemiah's secret visit of inspection, deserves careful study from a topographical point of view. Some of the proper names, too, are most interesting; e.g., BKSOUEIAH, COL-HOZEH, HALLOHESH, HARHAIAH, HASSENAAH.)

3. Opposition from Without.[edit]

The difficulties, however, with which the governor had to contend were still great. Influential persons of non-Israelite descent - 'Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite servant [EV , 'the servant, the Ammonite' ], Geshem, or Gashmu, the Arabian', of whom at least the first two had intermarried with leading Israelite families - had regarded the coming of Nehemiah 'to seek the welfare of the Israelites' (2:10) with no favour. They vied with one another in ridiculing Nehemiah's undertaking (2:19-20, 3:33-35 [4:1-3]). Then, waxing bolder, they planned a sudden attack on the builders of the wall (4:7-8, 4:11 [4:1-2, 4:5]). Nehemiah, however, was warned in time by Jewish friends on the frontier. At once he sus pended building operations, and posted his people behind the walls with arms, so that the enemy was overawed and had to abandon his plan. Henceforward Nehemiah was continually on his guard. Of his people one-half were in constant readiness to repel any onslaught. The builders themselves had their weapons by their side, and all the workers passed the night within the walls, a precaution that had not previously been thought necessary (4:15-23 [4:9-17]). The enemy s next resort [as Nehemiah represents] was to cunning (6:1-14). Over and over again they invited the governor to conference. On one occasion they pretend that their object was to counteract certain evil rumours which had been circulated against him ; on another they feed a Jewish prophet to induce Nehemiah to seek refuge in a part of the temple that was forbidden to the laity, so that he might lose influence with the people. Nehemiah saw through them, however, and did not fall into their traps.

[The section of Nehemiah's memoir on which the above sketch is based needs a very thorough criticism. It is no doubt plausible to assume that Sanballat and Tobiah were a Moabite and an Ammonite respectively, and to illustrate the intermarriage of Jesvish families with them by Neh. 13:1. It would seem, however, that Sanballat and Tobiah were worshippers of Yahwe, and from Neh. 4:2 [3:34] that Sanballat was a kinsman of the Samaritans. These considerations throw some doubt on Rosters view.

The most critical course is to emend the text of the passage referred to (3:34 [4:2]), which is admittedly in some disorder, and to read, 'And he said before the Jerahmeelites and Misrites, What are the Jews doing?' See Crit. Bib.; the proof of this emendation lies in the interpolated C WlSK explained as corrupted D ^XDrTT (dittographed). Sanballat (if the name may pass) was a Misrite of N. Arabia; Tobiah (or rather Rehobothi?) was probably called a Jerahmeelite, not an Ammonite. 'The servant' (cp RV) is a corruption of 'the Arabian', which is itself a misreading. See SANBALLAT, TOBIAH.

Whether Sanballat really believed that Nehemiah was about to rebel against Persia (2:19, 6:6) is uncertain ; but it was, at any rate, a colourable pretext for his opposition. The sudden disappearance of ZERUBBAREL [q.v.] seems to have been caused by just suspicions of his untrustworthiness, and some Jewish prophets may possibly have represented Nehemiah as the destined Messiah. 1 That Sanballat was unconciliatory cannot fairly be said. Undeterred by a first rebuff, he made four more attempts to bring about a conference with the governor (6:2-5). Nehemiah's cause was better than that of Sanballat ; but Nehemiah carried his suspiciousness to an extreme. He was the man for the time ; but historical students will seek to do justice not only to him but also to his opponents.]

1 [According to Wi. (AOF 2:234+), the object of Nehemiah's mission was to introduce an important modification into the purely hierarchical system of government lately introduced by Ezra in the priestly code, the high priest Eliashib having shown himself untrustworthy. Once more the land was placed under a secular official - a pehah [pekhah] (.ins), or 'governor', appointed by the court. When Nehemiah returned to Susa, Eliashib, who coveted the support of other noble but non-Israelitish families, renewed his intercourse with Tobiah the Ammonite ; and Nehemiah, on his second arrival at Jerusalem, punished this by banishing certain members of the high-priestly family on a legal pretext. But Nehemiah's mission can be accounted for without this hypothesis.]

4. Difficulties within.[edit]

Nehemiah had to contend with pusillanimity within, as well as with hostility without. He had to listen to complaints of the difficulty of the work (4:10 [ 4:4 ]) and to grievances of the poor against the rich (5:1+); nor could he by any means certainly reckon on the fidelity of the Jewish relatives of his enemies (6:17-19). But these obstacles also he was able to overcome. By his vigorous measures of defence, by the firmness of his faith in his own vocation and in the help of God, he inspired the timid with courage, and all with a spirit of respect and reverence. Above all was he strong by his generous disinterestedness ; thus, himself renouncing all claim upon his debtors, he induced the rich Jews to engage themselves to restore the possessions of their poorer compatriots which they had received in pawn, and not to exact payment of their debts ; the dues which as governor he was legally entitled to exact for his osvn use, he refrained from collecting ; he gave up his personal servants that they might labour at the building of the wall ; daily he received at his table Jews from outside the city who came to Jerusalem partly to hold council with him, and partly for the purpose of sacrificing (chap. 5). In this way he was able to make head against all difficulties and at last bring his great work to a conclusion. On the 25th of Elul, after fifty-two days labour, the restoration of the wall was completed (6:15).

1 Jew. Rel. Life, 46-47.

5. Dedication.[edit]

A solemn dedication ceremony ensued. Two choirs of priests and singers, followed by the rulers and the people, and headed, the one by Hoshaiah and the other by Nehemiah, marched from one fixed point in opposite directions, with music and song, along the walls, and rejoined one another for the solemn festival in the temple (12:27-43).

[It is stated in Neh. 5:14 that Nehemiah acted as governor of Judah from 'the 20th to the 32nd year of Artaxerxes the king, that is, 12 years'. This must surely be due to a later hand. Nehemiah's leave was only for a set time, and the king evidently expected him to return soon. The restoration of the wall was taken in hand promptly, and was effected in fifty-two days (Neh. 6:15). It is true Nehemiah had ulterior objects. But apparently he had not communicated these to Artaxerxes. If Josephus s date (see n. i) be correct, Nehemiah s governorship lasted only seven years. The context of Neh. 5:14, however, suggests that the memoir was written soon after the completion of the wall (see v. 16). Not improbably we should read in v. 14, for 'thirty-second', 'twenty-second', thus allowing two years for the governorship. This amply suffices for the works ascribed to Nehemiah. The mistake 'thirty-second' would be caused by the fact that Nehemiah's second brief governorship is placed in the 32nd year of Artaxerxes (Neh. 13:6).]

The walls and gates once set in order, Nehemiah's next care was for their being properly guarded, and for the due opening and closing of the gates ; he also saw to the government of the city, devised means for augmenting its population by immigration (7:1-5a, 11:1-2), and successfully induced many Levites, who still remained in other cities and villages, to transfer their residence to Jerusalem (cp 13:10-11).

[Between Nehemiah's first and second visits Marq. and Che. place Ezra's attempt at reorganisation. Nehemiah is nowhere mentioned as present in Jerusalem in the records of Ezra ; Ezra nowhere in those of Nehemiah. The reference to Ezra in Neh. 12:36 is an interpolation of the redactor; in Neh. 12:33, Ezra (=Azariah, 102) is a gentilic name. On the supposed references to Nehemiah in the memoirs of Ezra, see TIRSHATHA. That Nehemiah found no Babylonian element in the population of Judah worth reckoning with, appears from his own record. The only difficulty is in the date in Ezra 7:7 (cp Neh. 1:1). Perhaps we should read, for 'in the seventh year', 'in the twenty-seventh year' (J73C>1 C"lb J? nJtt>3); similarly in v. 8. It is true that Ezra 7:1-10 comes to us in a revised form ; but we need not assume that the date is the insertion of the reviser. Cp CHRONOLOGY, 14.]

6. Second visit : religious reform.[edit]

After a visit to Artaxerxes (Neh. 13:6) in the 32nd [or possibly 22nd] year of his reign, 433 K. c. [or 443 ?], Nehemiah returned to Jerusalem. He now appeared more than formerly as a religious reformer. The holders of the higher offices of the priesthood learned what stuff he was made of. 'The priest Eliashib' had given the use of one of the chambers belonging to the temple to Tobiah. Nehemiah indignantly cast out Tobiah's household utensils (13:4-9). Worse still, a grandson of Eliashib l the high priest had married a daughter of Sanballat. Him Nehemiah expelled from the sacred city (13:28). In the same section (v. 29) the governor makes reference to a number of priests who had desecrated their office ; we may assume therefore that this was not the only drastic measure carried out by Nehemiah in the temple. Certainly it is presupposed in Ezra 9-10, Neh. 9-10 that shortly afterwards the priesthood which served in the temple was of the right sort. It is not impossible that Nehemiah even deposed the high priest in favour of his son Jehohanan, the ally of Ezra (Ezra 10:6). His next measures of reform were directed against those who had married foreign wives ; he made them swear that they would not suffer their children to intermarry with foreigners, and did not hesitate physically to assault the recalcitrant (13:23-27). He took measures to prevent traders with their wares from entering the city on the sabbath day (13:19-22); secured that the Levites, who during his absence had again left the city, should thenceforward no longer be kept out of their dues (13:10-14) ; and made certain regulations with reference to the temple service, the wood-offering, and the first-fruits (13:30-31).

1 [No doubt the Manasseh, of whom Jos. Ant. 11:8:2-4 tells us.

7. Office.[edit]

Nehemiah's activity in Jerusalem after his return having thus been so different from that of his earlier period, and so much more decidedly ecclesiastical, it becomes a question whether during his second period he still continued to hold the dignity of governor. There is some reason for doubting whether he did. He himself expressly says [in the difficult passage, 5:14, on which see above, 5] that he was 'governor in the land of Judah' for only twelve years, down to the 32nd year of Artaxerxes ; and in the parts of the Book of Ezra-Nehemiah which relate to the time of his second visit, he is called [if we may trust the text] the Tirshatha and no longer peha or governor. See TIRSHATHA.

It seems probable, therefore, that on the occasion of his journey to court, Nehemiah had asked and obtained a change of position. Why he desired this we are not told ; but we are able to guess. From the outset Nehemiah s programme had been the restoration of Israel, to which the restoration of the walls was only subsidiary. To this restoration the most serious obstacle was the conduct of Nehemiah s non-Jewish adversaries. Their efforts to frustrate the restoration were indeed in vain ; still, their influence at Jerusalem continued to be very great, because of their alliance with the ruling families among the Jews, and even with that of the high priest. Their Jewish relatives who had supported Nehemiah in his rebuilding of the wall seemed disinclined to assist him in counteracting the foreign influences, on behalf of which indeed they openly took sides against him 1 (6:17-19). Nehemiah saw clearly, however, that, if Israel was to be restored, the high-priesthood must not be allowed to remain in the hands of Sanballat's and Tobiah's relations, and that a religious reformation had to be brought about. This he desired to accomplish ; but for the purpose he needed to have a position that would enable him to come forward in another capacity than that of governor of Judaea. It was with reference to this that he made his journey up to court, and we find him returning apparently with permission to come forward as a reformer of the religious condition of Judaea, not as Pehah, but as Tirshatha. It is not inconceivable that, in connection with his plans for reformation of the priesthood, Nehemiah had asked the king to hand over to the high priest some of those functions of governor which, in point of fact, we find him exercising at a later period.

[This hypothesis depends to some extent on the correctness of a very strange-looking word (hat-tirshatha), which in every passage where it occurs may be corrupt, and in some of the passages may have been inserted by a glossator. This at least, however, it is safe to assume, when drawn a second time by patriotic anxiety from Susa, Nehemiah came rather as special high commissioner than as governor. See Jew. Rel. Life, 64.]

The conjecture that Nehemiah's journey to court was the occasion of the return of Ezra and his band of exiles to Jerusalem is natural. By what means could Nehemiah better bring about the accomplishment of his aims than by such a strengthening of the Jewish element in Judaea? That at all events he gave his powerful aid to Ezra, co-operated with him in the formation of the congregation, and also took part with him in introducing the new law, we have endeavoured to show elsewhere (EZRA, 6-8).

Nehemiah was a strong man ; he achieved great things, and conquered difficulties that were well-nigh insuperable. It was faith that made him strong ; though he is himself the chronicler of his own good deeds (5:1, 9:13, 14:22, 14:31), we cannot doubt either the genuineness of his piety or the purity of his patriotism ; he sacrificed much for the restoration of Israel, the object of his faith and prayers. No wonder that this man was affectionately remembered by posterity. Ecclus. extols him (49:13; see, however, Swete's text) as the restorer of the city walls ; and in one of the two letters with which 2 Macc, opens (1:1-2:18) he is even celebrated as the man that rebuilt the temple and discovered the altar-fire which, at the destruction of the temple, had, at God's command, been hidden by the priests. More over, in 2 Macc. 2:13, where it is said that he commenced a library of accounts of the kings and the prophets, and writings of David, and letters of kings concerning temple-offerings, he is honoured as collector of part of Israel s sacred literature. Thus he was regarded in later times as the restorer, not only of Jerusalem and its walls, but also of the temple and its services ; and also as the man who rendered important service towards the formation of the sacred canon of Israel.

2. B. Azbuk, chief of half the district of Beth-zur, mentioned in list of wall-builders (Neh. 3:16). See above, 1-2; also EZRA ii., 16 [L], 15 d.

3. One of the leaders (see EZRA ii., 8e) of the Jews in the great post-exilic list (Ezra 2:2, Neh. 7:7 = 1 Esd. 5:8, Nehemias). see EZKA ii., 9, and GOVERNMENT. W.H.K. T. K.C.

1 [All that Nehemiah says, however, is that the nobles of Judah kept up a correspondence with Tobiah (Neh. 6:17). What follows in v. 19 is incorrectly read. vri31B can hardly mean 'his good deeds'. Read Moreover Rehobothites (nTHim) were (continually) speaking before me, and reporting my words to him. In justification of this, see TOBIAH.]




with the [RV], or, upon [AY], (ni^narr?!? ; ynep THC KAHPONOMOYCHC ; ATTO KAHpoAocicoN [Aq.], ynep KAHpoYX"*> N [ Svn1 -] pro htfreditatibus [Jer.]), Ps. 5 (title). Interpreters differ precisely as in the case of MAHALATH [q.v.] But we may be sure that '(the) Nehiloth' 1 is not the first word ( 'heritages' ?) of a well-known song, nor a synonym for halilim, 'flutes' (see, however, RVmg), nor miswritten for meholoth, 'dances' (so apparently Tg. reads). As Griitz has pointed out, it is simply a corruption of nioSjKn) [alamoth]. The versions all agree in disallowing the in niV mn ; it is true, they also disallow the i, which, however, is of no significance. Tg.'s reading suggests that between niD^J/rrVy and ni^ rurr^JJ there was a transitional reading nVrtDrrSjJ ; i. e, , Alamoth first became M-h-l-th and then N-h-l-th. See further PSALMS (BOOK), 26 [i]. T. K. c.


(D-1H3), Neh. 7:7 = Ezra 2:2 , REHUM.


(Knt TO, 68), the mother of king JEHOIACHIN (2 K. 24:8, Nec6<\ [B], N&IC6A [A], NG6C9AN [L]). The readings quoted approximate curiously to the name NEHUSHTAN [q. v. ], and are on this account strongly suggestive of corruption. Comparing ctyin (which we take to be from cw) and prm (from |E"ID), we may suppose XDWT] to be a corruption of rrira- The queen-mother then was Cushith - i.e., a N. Arabian. Her father was Elnathan of Jerusalem Elnathan, however, is probably an expansion of Ethan (cp NETHANIAH), and the very unlikely 'Jerusalem' (like 'Abishalom' in 1 K. 15:2, 15:10) is a corruption of Jerahmeel. Cp MAACHAH. T. K. C.


(IFIBTH ; N ece<\Aei [B], Nec6\N [A], Neec0A.N [L] ; Nohestan, Naasthan}.

1. Name.[edit]

2 K. 18:4b is rendered thus in EV, 'and he brake in pieces . . . Nehushtan' (with two marg. rends., 'Or, it was called', and 'That is, a piece of brass' ). The implication is that when HEZEKIAH [q.v. ] destroyed this idolatrous object, he called it 'a mere piece of brass (bronze)'. It cannot be denied that this view of i 1 ? jnp i is plausible ; it is also favoured by LXX{BA} (KCU (KaXfvev [kai ekalesan]). To suppose that those who offered sacrifices (lap ; see INCENSE, i) to the brazen serpent called it 'Piece of Brass', is surely absurd. Still, the grammatical structure of the sentence favours the view that a statement respecting the name given by the worshippers is intended (Klost. reads jop i or iNtp i I cp L /cat fKa\fffav [kai ekalesan]), and the question arises whether [nt^m represents correctly the name given by the worshippers to this sacred object. The theory which is archaeologically the most defensible as to the religious significance of the brazen serpent has suggested to the present writer that the original word may have been jmS, Leviathan, and that the deuteronomist, who (probably) adopted 2 K. 18:4-5a from the royal annals, out of a religious scruple changed jrn 1 ? [LVYTN] into JDC m [NHShTN], which of course involved interpreting iS tnp l [VYQRAYLV], 'and he (Hezekiah) called it'. *

1 Or else if? [LVY] in jmV [LVYTN] fell out owing to the preceding iV> [LV] and BTO [NHSh] was inserted by conjecture for the missing letters. This approaches Noldeke's suggestion, j3B VHJ (ZD.IfG, 1888, p. 482, n. i). But the combination of these two terms for 'serpent' could not have been original. Klost. is also at any rate on the right track; he explains (jn 1 B m), 'ancient serpent'. See SERPENT.

2. Origin and meaning.[edit]

The early writer from whom the deuteronomist draws in 2 K. 18:4 brings Nehushtan (?) into connection with the brazen serpent (nc*n: e m, 6<f>iv [ BAFL ]) mentioned in Nu. 21:9. Combining these two passages we are justified in supposing that in the regal period the superstitious Israelites sacrificed to the idol to obtain the recovery of their sick (cp SERPENT). It would not, however, follow that a healing virtue had always been supposed to be inherent in this sacred object. The fact (as we may venture to regard it) that the brazen oxen in 1 K. 7:25 were really copies of the oxen which symbolised Marduk in Babylonian temples (from which the brazen 1 'sea', also symbolic, was probably derived) suggests that for an explanation of Nehushtan we should look to Babylonia (see CREATION, 13, 19, 22). Now, it is certain from very early inscriptions (KB 31, p. 143; 3:2, pp. 21, 35, 73) that Babylonian temples contained, not only brazen oxen, but also brazen serpents. Some of these (see e.g. , KB 2z, p. 35) may have been protective serpents, such as were worshipped in the larger Egyptian temples ; but when, as in Solomon s temple, only a single one is mentioned, it is reasonable to suppose that it is the 'raging serpent' (i.e., Tiamat) that is meant, as in the inscription of king Agum-kakrimi (A Z?3i, p. 143). If so, the brazen serpent (more properly called LEVIATHAN, see above, i), which Solomon adopted with the brazen 'sea', and the brazen oxen from Babylonia, was originally a trophy of the Creator's victory over the serpent of chaos.

In later times it is very probable that the true meaning was forgotten ; it appears from Am. 9:3 (see SERPENT, 3-4) that the prophet Amos had heard only an echo of the old dragon-myth. A new meaning would therefore naturally become attached to the venerated symbol the meaning suggested above, which is supported by the etiological story 1 in Nu. 21 (cp Baudissin, Sim/. Sent. Rel. 1 288).

A less probable theory of the brazen serpent must not be unrecorded. W. R. Smith thought (/. of Tliil. !> 99) that 'Nehushtan' represented the totem of the family of David, and was worshipped by members of that stock in the manner described in Ezek. 8:8. This theory, however, is based on the traditional text of 2 S. 17:25 (see NAHASH), so that the totem-theory needs some modification in order to become plausible. Hence Benzinger has suggested that there may have been a serpent-clan among the tribes which united to form the Israelitish people, cp Gen. 49:17, of which Nehushtan may have been the sacred symbol just as the ARK [q.v.] may have been that of the tribe of Joseph. It is very doubtful, however, whether the so-called serpent-names. NAHASH, NAHSHON, NUN, and NEHUSHTA are textually sound ; all are in various degrees suspicious.

Was the brazen serpent in the temple really of primitive origin? We may well doubt it. The presumption is that it was neither more nor less ancient than the other sacred objects of Babylonian affinities in the temple of Solomon (cp CREATION, 19). 2 T. K. C.

1 The view here taken of Nu. 21:5-9 is not disproved by W. H. Ward's discovery of a Hittite cylinder on which worship is apparently represented as offered to a serpent on a pole. Indeed, such a representation helps us to understand how the story came to arise (cp SERPENT).

2 The writer has maintained these theories for several years, nor is he under obligations to other critics. Only after writing the above did he observe Stade s combination of suggestions in GVI 1 467, one of which is that the idol Nehushtan might be connected with the cultus of the sky-serpent.


pN" 1 !?}, on the first part of the name see ZALMUNNA ; INAHA [B], ANIHA [A], NACIHA [L]), mentioned with Beth-emek in the delimitation of Asher; Josh. 19:27-28. See BETH-EMEK and cp NEAH. Conder finds Neiel at Kh. Ya nin, 9 mi. E. of Akka, and Robinson at the village Ali ar 2 mi. E. of Ya'nin. Both are no doubt ancient sites (see Guerin, Gal. 1434436).

NEIGHBOUR (o TTAHCION) answers in the LXX to nX \lh, JVpl? amith, 1] rea, JT3 }N 31115 karobh 'el bayith.

Three points in the teaching of Jesus connected with this word deserve special attention.

1. In Mt. 5:43-44, Jesus contrasts the precept given to the ancients, Thou shall love thy neighbour and hate thine enemy, with his own rule, Love your enemies. The former part of the old principle is a verbal quotation from Lev. 19:18 LXX, and, as the parallelism clearly proves, neighbour was there synonymous with compatriot. The Jew was not at liberty to hate his personal enemies (see, on the contrary, Ex.23:4-5 ; Lev. 19:13; Prov. 20:22, 24:17, 24:29, 25:21-22; Job 3l:29 ; Ps. 7:4 [7:5]), nor is he anywhere required in express terms to hate the heathen. The scribes, however, may very well have thought such feelings justified from the ban under which Canaanite cities were to be put (Dt. 7:2), and from the language used in Dt. 15:2-3, 20:13-18, 25:17-19, Mal. 1:2-3 , and especially Ps. 139:21-22. All the more natural and indeed inevitable was such an inference in the strong reaction against the heathen power which held the chosen people in its grip. Jesus, then, taking 'neighbour' in its accepted sense, pronounces the former half of the Jewish maxim in sufficient and sweeps the latter half of it away. His disciples are to love not only their countrymen, not only even their private foes ; their love is to reach even those who hate them as members of the Kingdom of God. Christianity is to overcome the very opposition which it creates. The author of Lk. 6:27, as is his wont, omits the reference to the Jewish law and sets the maxim at the head of the discourse immediately after the intro ductory beatitudes and woes.

The words 'Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself' occur in the summary of the law which Jesus gave the rich young man, as reported in Mt. 19:16-30. They are absent, however, in the parallel account in Mk. 10:17-31 (cp Lk. 18:18-30) and the fact that this is just the point in whicli the young man fails when Jesus puts him to the proof, shows that the words in question do not belong to the original tradition but have been added from 22, 39. In any case they throw no light on the term neighbour, as Jesus understood it.

2. In Mt. 22:34-40 ( = Mk. 12:28-34) Jesus, when ques tioned as to the kind of commandment which is greatest, quotes as the great commandment Dt. 6:4 'Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord and thou shalt love the Lord thy God', etc., connects with it another commandment from another book, 'Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself' (Lev. 19:18), and declares that the second is 'like' - i.e., in importance - to the first. All the law and the prophets, he says, hang on those two commandments, - i.e., proceed from them - so that multiplicity of enactment disappears in unity of spirit. Here Jesus accepts the love of our neighbour as sufficient, though to him, no doubt, the word had a wider sense than it bore in the Hebrew Code.

3. Once, however, Jesus took occasion to develop this wider meaning. Asked 'Who is my neighbour?' he replied by the parable of the Good Samaritan (Lk. 10:29-37) and then himself asked the questioner, 'Which of these three thinkest thou proved neighbour to him that fell among the robbers?' 1 The object of Jesus was apparently to show that one of the heretic and hated Samaritans could prove himself a better neighbour to a Jew than a priest or a Levite, and that it is therefore wrong to refuse them the title of neighbour. If this interpretation be correct, 1 Jesus extends the term 'neighbour' in the command 'Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself', till it is co-extensive with mankind.

This wider sense belongs to 6 ir\T\awv [o plesion] in the rest of the NT. According to Paul (Rom. 13:9) all the law is summed up in the command, 'Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself', 1 and this, according to James (2:8), is the royal or principal law. vv. E. A.

1 It is the simplest, though not the commonest interpretation of the passage. See B. Weiss, ad loc.


Pj53n), Josh. 19:33 AV+, RV ADAMINEKEB.


(&nip3, a kind of bird? 83 ; NCKCoAA [BKAL]).

1. The family name of a company of post-exilic Nethinim: Ezra 2:48 (vf\- [B], ye<c<uSAi/[A])- Neh. 7:50 (<ccoa^ [ ]) - 1 Esd. 5:31 (i/oe/Sa [HA], KV NOEHA).

2. One of the three families from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, Addon and Inimer, that were unable to produce written evidence of their Israelite descent : Ezra 2:60 = Neh. 7:62 = 1 Esd. 5:37 AV NECODAN, RV Nekodan (ctKioW [BA]).



i. One of the sons of Simeon; Nu. 26:12, 1 Ch. 4:24. If these clan- names are traditional records of ethnic affinities, a better reading would be JEMUEL ("?MD ; if/uouTjX ; le/ziTjX [B], in Ex.) as in Gen. 46:10, Ex. 6:15 - i.e. , Jerahme'el. This is confirmed by the circumstance that a Reubenite bears the same name ( 'Reuben' probably is a Jerahmeelite name ; Reuben seems to have been originally a southern tribe). further evidence might be produced. The patronymic Nemuelite (i>a/j.ovr)\[e~\i) occurs in Nu. 26:12.

2. A Reubenite, brother of Dathan and Abiram (Nu. 26:9).

T. K. C.


(NCOJKOpOC, Acts l9:35, 'a worshipper', AVmg 'the temple keeper', RV 'temple-keeper' ). The word Neocoros is an old religious term in Asia Minor, adopted and developed in the imperial cultus which was so important in the organisation of the empire. Originally expressing the devotion of the city to the particular deity whose worship was most zealously cultivated, the term 'Neocoros', or 'Neocoros of the Emperors', came to be connected with the politico- religious imperial cultus almost entirely, and when the title appears on coins and inscriptions under the empire it signifies 'Warden of a temple dedicated to the imperial worship'. The temple had to be dedicated by the Provincial Synod, whose president was (in Asia) the Asiarch. It had also to be dedicated to the emperor alone ; it was not sufficient if a particular city dedicated a temple, apart from the Provincial Synod, nor if the emperor was merely received as partner into the temple of an older deity. Coincident with the dedication of the temple and the appointment of the necessary priests and other officials, was the establishment of games in honour of the emperor. The title and permission to erect the temple was granted by decree of the senate in Rome. When by similar decree permission was granted for the erection of a temple and the establishment of games in honour of a later emperor, the city received the title 6is Neco/copo? ; and rpis XewKOpos when a third foundation was made. Apparently no city received more than the triple Neocorate, which was granted first to Pergamos (according to the boast on its coins, which may not be true). Ephesus alone boasts a fourth Neocorate ; but the fourth refers to the worship of Artemis, which was officially recognised by Hadrian. 1 It is with reference to this worship that the title is used of Ephesus in the 'town clerk's' speech - for, of course, the old signification of the word, in which sense it could be used by any city that wished to express its devotion to a particular deity, still continued even after it gained the special meaning above explained (cp Wood, .//>/>. Inscr. vi. 6, p. 50). It is, in fact, doubtful whether so early as about 56 A.D. Ephesus could claim the title in its imperial sense.

Of the Asiatic cities mentioned in the NT, the title was possessed by Pergamus, Ephesus, Laodiceia, Hierapolis, Philadelphia, Smyrna.

See Buchner, De Neacoria ; Monceaux, De coiniintni Asiie Provinciif, 1886; Ramsay, Cities and Bisk, of Thrygin, 1 5*.

w. 1. \V.

1 Cp imperial silver coins of Ephesus bearing the type of Artemis and the legend DIANA EPHESIA. See Rams. Church. in Rom. Einp, 143.



i. A Kohathite Levite, Ex. 6:21 (vafcK [BAL], va<f, 7 [F]).

2. A son of David, 2 S. 615 i Ch. 3 7 146 (i<a$e/c, i>a<j>a6 [/>;>] [B]; I aijieK, i a<j>ey, va<j>ay [A]; va<j>a.T [, iCh. 146]; va-fyet), veey, va<j>eK [L]). See DAVID, n n., NOGAH.


(2 Macc. 1:36), RV NEPHTHAI ; see NAPHTHA.


(D>mB:, nrANTec [BADEFL] ; cp iO S: [NPhYLA] = Kesil or ORION [q.v.] in Tg.).

1. Biblical references.[edit]

(a) Gen. 6:4: 'The Nephilim arose in the land (or, on the earth) in those days (namely) when the divine ones had intercourse with human maidens ; those are the heroes, the famous ones'. (The words p-"inn D3i and oSiyo "lE N are here untranslated ; see c and 3. ) The passage to which Gen. 6:4 belongs, comes in its present form from J1, 1 whose account of the early men apparently did not refer to a deluge (see DELUGE, 14). J availed himself of an old mythological story, which, however, did not in all respects please him, and from which he therefore only took very small portions, such as were in themselves unobjectionable and appeared consistent with the other stories which he had to weave together into a history of the early men.

The text must first of all be critically emended : even Rosters (Th. 7"10 42) infers from Q3E*3, 'for their sin' (?), an early tradition of the sin of the b'ne Elohim (on D;C 2, see n. 2). Knowing what we do of the early Hebrew and (still more) of the Babylonian myths, we can attempt to reproduce the outlines of the old story, assuming the most reasonable corrections of an imperfect text.

'And so it fell out, that when men began to multiply on the earth, and daughters were born to them, the divine ones (b'ne ha-Elohim) saw that the human maidens were fair, and took as wives any that they preferred. [And they taught mankind how to clothe themselves and how to forge brass and iron. And their sons in after-time became heroes, and men prospered under their rule. Now the cause wherefore the divine ones had come down to earth was this. There had been dissension among the divine ones, some being friendly to men, some unfriendly. And those that were friendly came down to visit men upon earth. But the lord of the divine ones doubted in his heart whereunto the prosperity of men would grow.] And Yahwe said, The spirit of the glorious gods shall not tarry longer in habitations of flesh. 2 [I will sweep them from the earth, lest they become too strong. But the divine ones spoke soft words and counselled their lord to wait.]'

According to this view of the story, the parents of those primeval heroes, including Nimrod, whom J1 identifies with the 'Nephilim', are the founders of civilisation (see CAINITES), and their sons carry on the arduous work. The supposed dissension among the divine ones is in accordance with the Deluge story and other Babylonian myths. The hesitation of the supreme God Yahwe (who was portrayed as no better than Bel) is in harmony with the survivals of primitive theology in Gen. 3:22, 11:6 (also J1). A later editor is the author of 6:3b, where 'his days' presupposes that DIN, 'man', precedes - i.e., that v. 3a has already become corrupted. Verse 4 belongs to J1 except the words 'and after that', to which we shall return ( 3, ii. ).

Then, most probably, in this writer s narrative followed the story in Gen. 11:1+ which originally began thus, 'And the whole earth was a single family in the wilderness of Jerahmeel', and ends with 'and they left off building the city' (see PARADISE, 7), after which may have come the account of the true Noah (Gen. 9:20-27), and of Cush and (especially) Nimrod (Gen. 10:8-12) who was regarded as one of the 'famous men', the heroes of Jerahmeel. See NIMROD, NOAH.

(b) Nu. 13:33 (E). The account of the episode of the Spies also mentions the 'Nephilim'. 'And there we saw the Nephilim, the sons of Anak, who come of the Nephilim'. Here 'the Nephilim is' original ; the sons of Anak, etc., is a (correct) gloss. According to this passage the 'Nephilim' were still to be found when the Israelites entered Canaan (or the Negeb).

(c) Ezek. 32:27 : 'And they lie not with the heroes that are fallen of the uncircumcised, who went down to Sheol with their warlike equipment'. Cornill plausibly reads c^tyo for D^IJTO (with LXX), and also C SB3 for D ^BJ. D^iyo at once reminds one of Gen. 6:4, where the same word occurs ; but it is nevertheless wrong in both passages : something much more definite is required (see 3). D I 7B3 (c <( ?B3?) must be right. Ezekiel, if this view be accepted, does not regard the Nephilim as lying under the curse of God. He also tells us who they were (see 3, end).

(d) Later writers, however, thought very differently. In Ecclus. 16:7, Wisd. 146, Judith 16:7, Bar. 3:26+, 3 Macc. 2:4, we find allusions to the 'giants' and their fate. The author of Enoch 9-10 has much more to say. He supplements Gen. 6:1-4 by the statement that the giants at length turned against mankind to devour them. Upon this the Lord himself interposed. The chief fallen angel and his companions he punished in the way described elsewhere (see AZAZEL) ; their sons, the giants, he caused to perish in internecine warfare.

This account is closely followed in the Book of Jubilees (chap. 6). Both Jubilees, however, and the fragments of the Greek Enoch differ from the Ethiopia Enoch in one respect - they mention three classes of giants - viz., the Great Giants, the Nephilim, and the Eliud (or, in Jub. 7, Giants, Naphil, and Eljo).!

1 According to Olshausen the whole of v. 4 consists of glosses {Monatsl-er. tier Berl. Akad., June 1878). Budde, Wellhausen, Kautzsch-Sqcin, Holzinger, Ball are content with assuming that

  • 3 "inn 031 s a gloss. This is only a step in the right direction

(see 3), nor may we follow Budde (Bibl. Urgesch. 30 ff.) in reconstructing the old tradition so as to include a part of v. 4. The early pre-Yahwistic tradition may be gathered from vv. 1-3a. J1 adopted the tradition, and connected with it the origin of the heroes called Nephilim (?).

2 The present text contains two untranslatable words (TIT and Q3B 3)- There has been some disarrangement, and, conse quently, some confusion of letters. Read DTi^N fin T1*T ^ nba n urc sa D ynK. For T\K\ cp Nu. 9:19, 9:22; for IN I( 7K, 1 S. 4:8; for 3 acre, Job 4:18, 10:4. For other emendations of JIT and C3C 3 see Di. s notes. None of them are satisfactory; the corruption is more extensive than has been suspected. Yet the material handed down is not irremediably corrupt. The student should notice that C3V3, not 03BQ, is the best Massoretic reading (Geiger, Jiiti. Zt. 3 155, Ginsburg). Even that, however, will not produce a good sense.

2. Origin of myth.[edit]

We must at once dismiss all theories of the existence of an early myth of a 'sin' of the b'ne Elohim. Neither those supernatural beings nor their offspring were originally regarded as having 'sinned'. There is not even any trace in Gen. 6:1-2 of 'war in heaven' ; any such myth which there may once have been has perished. We cannot, therefore, follow either Lenormant, 2 who compares the Greek myths of the Gigantomachia and the Titanomachia, or Sayce, 3 who suspects a connection between the 'Nephilim' and the terrible beings described in the so-called 'Cuthaean' creation-story, 4 which, however, is no creation-story at all. These terrible beings are the brood of Tiamat the chaos-monster, and are represented (the narrator has lost hold on the early myth, in which the bird-like, raven-faced beings are, no doubt, storm demons) 5 as oppressing a certain (Babylonian?) king till they are cursed and destroyed. They are, in short, the destroyers, not (like the heroes of the Hebrew legend) the founders, of civilisation. The true parallels to Gen. 6:1-2 lie close at hand ; the sexual intercourse of gods and men is a constant feature of ancient mythologies (cp Plat. Cratylus, 33), including the Babylonian (see CAINITES, 5-6). The later Jews (as the NT shows us) naturally took offence 6 at Gen. 6:2. The first Yahwist (J1), however, hands on this part of the old tradition in perfect simplicity.

1 See Charles, Book of Enoch, teff. ; JQR 6 (1894) 195^ 202 (Jubilees), also Jubilees (about to appear).

2 Origines de rhistoire, 1 Jfyoff.

3 Crit. and Man. 91.

4 See CREATION, 16 ; Zimmern, ZA 12317 ff. 6 Cp R. Brown, Primitive Constellations, 1 108.

6 [See Jude (,/. -2 Pet. 2 4, and especially Enoch 15:4, 'Whilst you were still spiritual, holy, in the enjoyment of eternal life, you have defiled yourselves with women . . . and produced flesh and blood'. ]

3. Origin of 'Nephilim'.[edit]

It still remains

  • (i. ) to explain the name 'Nephilim', and
  • (ii. ) to account for the troublesome phrases ne-x cSij C and J3 nnt< D3i in Gen. 6:4 ; cp also Ezek. 32:27.

i. It is not a matter of merely linguistic interest to explain D Sl IsJ ; the race so designated, though mentioned under this name only twice or thrice in the OT, evidently filled a large place in Israelitish tradition. It is a mistake to regard the name as a mere appellative ; from Nu. 13:28-33 it is plain that Nephilim (if the reading is correct) has as definite a reference as the parallel phrase, b'ne Anak, 1 which, as Dt. 2:11 shows, was the name of a branch of the REPHAIM [q.v.]. It is therefore enough simply to mention the supposed connection with ^/^BJ [root NPL]. 'to fall' (as if 'those who fall on the weak', or 'those who have fallen from heaven', or 'those who had been born contrary to nature' ), 2 with sjn^s [root PLA] (as if 'extra ordinary ones' ), 3 and with /y/Ss: ( = "?3J = Ass. nabalu, 'to destroy' ). The name has, very possibly, been distorted through corruption of the text either of Gen. 6:4 or, more probably, of Nu. 13:33 (an editor adjusted the reading of the other passage or passages accordingly). What then are the best authenticated names of the pre-Israelitish peoples of Canaan, and more especially of that part of Canaan which was referred to in the original story which probably underlies Nu. 13:17-33? They are Amorites and Jerahmeelites, and it so happens that the city with which originally the b'ne Anak were connected was the Jerahmeelite city of REHOBOTH [q. v. ]. Among the many distortions of the name Jerahme'el or Jerahme'elim which the OT contains, it is very credible that o ^an was one, 4 and from D-^ST [RPLYM] to D ^SJ [NPLYM] the step is easy. This, consequently, was what E said in Nu. 18:33, 'And there we saw the Jerahmeelites' [gloss, 'the sons of Anak, who belong to the Jerahmeelites' ]; and the true words of J1 in Gen. 6:4 are these, 'The Jerahmeelites arose in the land in those days'. Cp JERAHMEEL, 4.

ii. It is now very easy to explain o^tyo "iB N and QJI iD- inN. The former phrase comes from D !?KDrlTn. 'the Jerahmeelites', and the latter is simply an editor's endeavour to make sense of n ririND, the disarranged letters of D^MDITT, 'Jerahmeelites', inserted as the earliest editor's correction of D ^BJ- In Ezek. 32:27 a similar correction is necessary. n Stj D (like n ^ny in Judg. 14:3 etc. ) is a corruption of Q 7Kbm .

Thus the origin of the Jerahmeelites is traced by an early Hebrew writer and also by Ezekiel to the semi- divine heroes of primitive culture, such as NIMROD [q.v.], the beginning of whose kingdom was Jerahmeel. The idea that these heroes and their divine fathers are leaders in sin is late. T. K. C.

1 The conjunction of pjy 33 and S^Oy in Nu. 13:28-29 suggests that pjy is really a corruption of p^DJ? (Amalek) i.e., ^NDrlT (Jerahmeel).

2 Views successively maintained by Del., the first in ed. 4, the second in ed. 3, the third in ed. 5 (the new edition ) of his Genesis. For the derivation from \/SE3i [NPL] see Aq., Sym., and cp the ru)i/ TrfTTTiaKOTuiv following rtav yiydi Twv in Ezek. 32:27 (LXX, fUTTLTTToi Ta in Gk. Enoch [Charles, 84, 350].

3 Tuch, Knobel, Lenormant.

4 3 corrupted from a, as in *?ys> Gen. 21 22 etc. (see PHICOL).


(Nei<t>6IC [B]), 1 Esd. 5:21 AV = Ezra 2:30, MAGBISH, q.v.


(1 Ch. 5:19 ), RV NAPHISH.


(D^Bi; Kri D^p-lD} ; on name, see below), the name of one of the families of NETHINIM (q.v.}, Ezra 2:20o (N&cpeiCOON [B], NecppyceiM [AL]), miswritten Nephishesim or Nephushesim in || Neh. 7:52 (D DUB3, Kre; DD^S3, Kt. ; N ecpu)C<\cei [B], -eiM [N], Ne4>ooc<\eiM [A], NecpoyceiM [L] ; one of the sibilants is clearly superfluous) = 1 Esd.5:31 Naphlsi (i>a<t>ei<rei [B], i>a<pi<rt. [A], vfcpuireifj. [L]). Guthe compares the name Neflsi or Nefusi on an ancient seal in the Brit. Mus. (Rev. Arch., 1891, p. 109). Since Meunirn precedes, Nephisim will probably be a tribal name ; cp NAPHISH, a tribe of Ishmaelites.

T. K. C.


( N ecpGAi ) , 2 Macc. 1:36. See NAPHTHA.


( N ecbe<\AeiM, Tob. 1:1). See NAPHTALI. In Tob. 1:2 'the city which is called properly Nephthali' [AV] rests upon the false reading icvpius T??S vfcftQa^eifj. for Kvdius TTJS vt>6a\ei/j, [BX], or KvSiav r.v. [A] ; RV has KEDESH NAPHTALI ; see KEDESH, i.


( N ed>eAAeiM (Ti. WH]), Mt. 4: 13 AV, RV NAPHTALI.


(Ned>6Ap [AV]), 2 Macc. 1:36 RV, AV NAPHTHAR (q.v.).


(nifiBJ), only in the phrase 'the fountain of the waters of Nephtoah' ( 3 D j\tfD, nHfH YAATOC NA4>0u) [BAL], MA(j>6co [B in 15a]), a locality on the border of Judah and Benjamin (Josh. 15:9, 18:15+), generally identified with Lifta, a village with a large fountain, the waters of which are collected in a great walled reservoir of very early origin, and situated about 2 mi. NW. of Jerusalem on the slope of a hill on the E. side of the Wady Bet Hanina. The locality is undoubtedly ancient, and its situation may be consistent with the description in the book of Joshua. The equation, Nephtoah = Lifta, however, is rather difficult, and the frequency of corruption in the name-lists suggests caution. Certainly the name Nephtoah ( 'an opened place' ?) is improbable, and the phrase 'the fountain of the waters of N.' is tautological.

J O in ninSJ D probably comes from a dittographed yyQ (the final forms of letters very slowly became prevalent). In the list of the towns of Judah we find (Josh. 15:34) a place called Tappuah Enam, 1 which is grouped with Zanoah and En-gannim, and must have lain somewhere near Timnah (Josh. 15:10) ; the same place is also probably meant in Gen. 38:14, ^ as the place visited by Judah s daughter-in-law Tamar. Most probably for mna ryD *?X in Josh. ll.c. we should read (by transposition) Cry rnarr?X 'to Tappuah (of) Enam'. This may perhaps throw fresh light on the boundary of Judah and Benjamin. Cp TAPPUAH.

Conder has already noticed that Petah 'Enayim in Gen. 38:14 should be the name of a town, and be identified with Tappuah Enam in Josh. 15:34 (PEP Q, 1876, p. 66). Nephtoah he identified with Etam or 'Ain 'Atan, close to the Pools of Solomon, SW. of Bethlehem, following Yonia 31a (PEFQ, 1879, P- 9S)- But the Talmudic traditions are often untrust worthy. T. K. C.


(D O^-IB? [Kt.]), Neh. 7:52 RV = Ezra 2:50 AV Nephusim. See NEPHISIM.


02- NHP [BAL], NHpei [B in iS.14 5 o]), the father of Abner (1 S. 14:50-51. 26514 2 S. 28 12 823 252837 i K.2 S 32 i Ch. 833 9 3 6 39 26 2 8t).

For two competing explanations of 1 Ch. 8:33, 9:36-39 ( 'Ner begat Kish' ), see ABNER, n. i, KISH, i. It seems to the present writer extremely probable that the true name of Abner s father was Nadab or Abinadab. It will be noticed that in 1 Ch. 8:30 'Ner' is not mentioned, but that Nadab is, while in 9:36 we read 'and Ner and Nadab' ; 'Nadab' in the latter passage is a correction of 'Ner'. Both in 8:30 and in 9:36 we meet with jn3y (Abdon?) ; this is a corruption of 3-uhbx (Abinadab). 'Baal' which comes between 'Kish' and 'Ner' or 'Nadab' is a fragment of 'Ahibaal', one of the two competing names of the grandfather of Saul and Abner, and to be explained like Meri(b)baal ; see MEPHIBOSHETH. Similarly Nadab (of which Ner is a corruption) might be a fragment of Abinadab (from Nedabi one of the Nadab-clan ?). Both names were probably written in the margin of some (late) document used by the Chronicler as corrections of jnsy. Cp KISH, 1, 2. T. K. c.


(NHpeyC [Ti. WH]) and his (unnamed) sister are saluted by Paul in Rom. 16:15 ; cp ROMANS, EPISTLE TO.

Nrjpevs [nereus] and Nrjpeis [nereis] occur pretty often as names of slaves ; e.g., Domitia Nereis, wife of an imperial freedman and secretary (CfL vi. 8698). Lightfoot (Philifpiatis 1 ?}, 174) cites from Acc. di Archeol. 11:376 a Claudia Aug. L. Nereis, related to a mother and daughter Tryphaena (ibid. 11:375).

According to the (apocryphal) Acts of Nereus and Achilleus, Nereus was a house-slave of the Christian princess Domitilla. A Nereus occurs in the Acta Philippi of which the scene is laid in Asia Minor. His ashes were believed to have been deposited in the Church of SS. Nereus and Achilles at Rome. For other legends cp the Bollandist, Acta Sanctorum, May 12.

1 For crym msn. 'Tappuah and (the) Enam' read CJ J?n 'and Tappuah of (the) Enam'. See TAPPUAH, i.

2 For cyy nnSS, 'in the gate of Enaim' read y nS3ri3, 'at Tappuah (of) Enaim'. Gen. 38:16 'and he turned aside to her' does not favour the reading nnE3, 'in the gate'.


(Sill? ; THNepreA [B]- Swete, T HN epreA, A om., TON NlplfeA [L-]) the patron deity of CUTHA (q. v. ), still worshipped by the Cuthaeans whom 'the King of Assyria' transplanted to the cities of Samaria (2 K. l7:30+). Cp NERGAL-SHAREZER. The planet sacred to Nergal was Mars, which, like its god, was called Karradu, 'warrior'. He was the god of war ; but earlier he was the god of the heat of summer or midday. Fundamentally he was identical with Gibil the fire-god, and a title by which (apparently) he was known in Palestine was Sarrapu 'burner' (perhaps connected with o sTB ; see SERAPHIM). He was also the god of pestilence, and as such, otherwise called Dibbarra (cp na^), the god of Deathland. Jensen (Kosmol. 476) thinks that Ner-unu-gal (of which ^-u is a shortened form) was interpreted by the Babylonians 1 'the mighty one of the great dwelling [of the dead]'. His symbol, like that of Dibbarra, 1 was the lion. The month sacred to him was Kisilimu (Kislev) - i.e. , the middle of November to the middle of December - possibly as containing the days when the sun appears to die (Kosmol. 486). G. Hoffmann ingeniously traces the divine name Nergal in the corrupt personal ABED-NEGO, which should, according to him, be read Abed-nergo (-nergal). Cp Uzza, rather Ezra (ZA 11:237-238).


or, rather, Nergal-sarezer pVN~C 7313. So Ba., Ginsb. ; NHRfeA CAR&C&p [NAQ] : Jen 39 ^ ^PFANACAP [B], M&pr-ANN&C&P [X ], NHpfCC CAR- [Q]; Jer. 39 3 ^, NArAPfACNACep [B], N&cep [KAQ], NHpeA CAPC&P [Q*;]i Neregel, Sereser).

1. Hommel's theory.[edit]

The name looks like a Hebraised form of Nergal-shar-usur ( 'Nergal, protect the king' ), which is the name of Evil-merodach's successor, better known as Neriglissar. 2 According to Hommel (in Hastings DB 1:229a) and Kent (Hist, of the Jewish People, 367), this prince may be identified with the officer mentioned in Jer. 39:3, 39:13. The theory is tempting, because it vivifies the somewhat dry account of the captains of the king of Babylon in the Hebrew narrative (but see 3).

2. Neriglissar.[edit]

He was raised, to the throne by the priestly party, and Nabu-na'id 3 (Stele, col. v. ) recognised him as a true and faithful friend of his country. Neriglissar (559-555) reigned four years all but four months. He was, like Nebuchadrezzar and Nabu-na'id, a great builder of temples, and evidently bent on consolidating his kingdom rather than on foreign conquests or alliances. See his cylinder, KBm.lTiff. But there was also a Nergal-shar-usur, son of Bel-shum-ishkin, who plays an important part in the private contracts of Amel-Marduk's reign. Cp also SHAREZER.

1 Jastrow, Rel. of Bah. and Ass. 529.

- See Berossus, Jos. c. Ap. 1:20; Eus. Chron. 49 22^ 5022^". ; and Abycienus, Eus. Chron. 41 28-32 42 28-30.

3 See Messerschmidt, Die Inschr. tier Stele Nabunaids, p. 21.

3. Underlying narrative.[edit]

The objection to the ordinary theory is, not that in v. 13 Nergal-sharezer is called RAB-MAG (q. v. ), a title of obscure signification which is unlikely to have been assigned by a Hebrew writer to so important a person, but that the text of vv. 1, 3, 5, 13 has almost certainly undergone both corruption and editorial manipulation. That some of the names in vv. 3, 13 are corrupt, is indeed generally admitted ; but it is almost certain that a bolder theory is necessary. It has been maintained elsewhere (e.g., OBADIAH [BOOK], 7) that the Edomites and Arabians took part in the capture of Jerusalem and the carrying away of a part of its inhabitants as captives. This gives us the key to the problems of several sections of Jeremiah (cp PROPHET), and in particular 108913513. The results of our criticism of these passages can now lay claim to a high degree of solidity. We should probably read nearly as follows :

'Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon and the king of Jerahmeel came to Jerusalem and besieged it' (v. 1b). '(It came to pass that) all the princes of the king of Babylon and all the princes of the king of Jerahmeel came in, and sat in the middle gate, - the prince of Jerahmeel, the prince of Missur, the prince of Nodab, the prince of Cushim, and the prince of the Arabians' (v. 3). 'And the Jerahmeelites and the Chaldaeans (Cushites?) pursued them' (v. 5a). 'Then sent Nebuzaradan, captain of the guard, and the prince of Nodab, and the prince of Cushan, and the prince of the Arabians, and the prince of Jerahmeel, and the prince of Missur' (v. 13).

With this we may compare the equally necessary reconstruction of 34:1.

'The word which came to Jeremiah from Yahwe, when Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, and the king of Jerahmeel, and Missur, and the Ishmaelites, and the Edomites fought against Jerusalem'.

For parallels to some of these corruptions, see JERAHMEEL, MIZRAIM. Nergal-sharezer appears to be a very early emendation of a corrupt reading nsjnB Sro (cp BK*), which proceeded from nso "IB 1 Vxcnyhe l. The editor, in fact, did his best to give a Babylonian colouring to the passages, but had imperfect success. T. K. C., 1, 3; c. H. w. J., 2.


(rsmpei [Ti. WH]), a name in the genealogy of Jesus (Lk. 3:27). See GENEALOGIES ii., 3.


(nn?, as if 'Yahwe is light', 35, 44; cp Abner ; but both names may be altered from the ethnic Nadab, Nedabi, 'Baruch' too being a Jerahmeelite name ; NHp[e]lOY [BNAQ]), the father of Baruch (Jer. 32:12, etc. ). In Bar. 1:1 Nerias (Srjpiov [BAQ]).


Nets of various kinds were used in ancient Palestine in fishing, fowling, and hunting.

1. ncn, resheth, any kind of net (LXX gen. SIKTVOV [diktoun]) ; also used of the brazen network in the altar (Ex. 27:4-5, 38:4 ; LXX tpyov SiKTviarov ; EV 'net-work' ).

2. D"in, herem (something perforated), according to some scholars a hand-net, but note LXX's renderings (Ezek. 25:5, 26:14, Eccl. 7:26, o-ayrjir [sagene]) , Hab. 1:15, a.fi.<f>L^\ri<TTpov [amphiblestron]) ; see FISH, 3.

3. "lOIJp, mikmar, Is. 51:20 (a/u$. [Symm. in Q m K-]) and "C3D, makmor (something twisted ? 1 ) Ps. 141:10 (ap.<f>.), as well as the feminine forms rrT23D, Hab. 1:15-16: (EV 'drag' ; AVmg. 'flue-net' ; cray.) and J1T33O, Is. 19:8 (cray. and an$. ayKitrrpov , see Swete ad /dc.) perhaps a drag-net ; in Is. 51:20, where apparently it means a net large enough to catch an antelope ; but is 32 NW3 s impossible (see Isaiah, Heb. SSOT 148, 201).

4. lisa, masod (from T)S, 'to hunt' ) is rendered net by EV in Job 19:6 (oxvpia/jM.) and Prov. 12:12 (AVmg. 'fortress' ; RVmg. 'prey' ; the text is unsatisfactory : see Toy). The pi. D % "11J3 (0T)pev/u.a[Ta] [thereumata]) is rendered SNARES (q.v.) in Eccl. 7:26 (EV). From the same root are derived : rniSO, specially used of fish in Eccl. 9:12 (aju.<#).), and ,THXS, rendered 'net' in Ps. 66:11 (wayi s [pagis]) ; but the text of the whole verse is unsatisfactory, 2 and in Ezek. 12:13, 17:20 'snare' (jrepio\^).

5. C DDif, sebakim, is applied in an architectural sense to the ornamentation about the top of a pillar, 1 K. :17! ( " r V ? ^ nD3b , 'nets of checker work, cp Jos. Ant. 8:3:4, SIKTVOV cAarr) xaAicea irepin-eTrAeyimeVoi ). The text here has to be corrected ; see Klo. ad lt>c. iy is properly some kind of lattice work ; cp "I33E 1 , 'net-work' (1 K. 7:18, :41) and 'lattice' (2 K. 1:2) ; used also of the meshes of a net, in Job 18:8 (AV 'snare', RV 'toils' ).3

In the NT fishing-nets are denoted by the following : (i) SI KTVOK [diktoun], Mt. 4:20, Lk. 5:5, Jn. 21:6 ; (2) ^ c/H /SArjo-Tpoi/ [amphiblestron], Mt. 4:18, Mk. 1:16 (not Ti. WH) : and (3) crayTJnj [sagene], Mt. 13:47, for all of which see FISH, 3. See also Fowl. ING, 8.

1 V23 = 13D> t twist. Del., however (and so Ges.-Bu.), compares Ass. kaindni, to overpower (Heb. Lang, \off-).

2 niisp should certainly be .Y>1SD ( 'abyss' ); r. n^ can then be quite regularly emended (Che.).

3 Cp Ar. shabakat(un), 'net', and MH ,1330 ? 'hair-net'.


(D*rn?), 1 Ch. 4:23 RV. See GEDERAH, 2.


RY Nathanel (N3n3 ; cp irVJJTJ, and see NAMES, 27 ; N&6&NAHA [BXAL] ; only in P and in post-exilic literature, possibly, like Ammiel, etc., based on an early tribal name; cp [n t*, Ethan, Sflnrr, Jathniel, and prr, Jithnan ; *? may be an afformative ; so, too, NETHANIAH [q.v.] may = Ethani, as Pelatiah = Pelethi or Pelathi [Che.]).

1. b. Zuar, a prince of Issachar (Nu. 1:8, 2:5, 7:18, 10:15 [P]).

2. Brother of David and fourth son of Jesse (1 Ch. 2:14). See DAVID, i, col. 1020, n. 3.

3. A priest of the time of David (1 Ch. 15:24).

4. Father of Shemaiah, a Levite scribe (1 Ch. 246).

5. b. Obed-edom (i Ch. 26:4, i/an? leirjA [I!]).

6. One of Jehoshaphat's commissioners for teaching the Law (2 Ch. 17:7. He is mentioned with BEN-HAM, and MICAIAH, both names indicative of Jerahmeelite affinities (Che.)

7. A chief of the Levites, temp. Josiah (2 Ch. 3:59); in 1 Esd. 1:9, a captain over thousands, NATHANAEL.

8. A priest of the b'ne Pashhur in list of those with foreign wives (see EZRA!., 5 end), Ezra 10:22 = 1 Esd. 9:22, NATHANAEL (yaflararjAos [B]).

9. Priest temp. Joiakim (see EZRA ii., 6l, 11), Neh. 12:21 (Kc.a mtf. inf. ; O m. BN*A).

10. A Levite musician in procession at dedication of wall [see EZRA ii., 13.?-] Neh. 12^6 (om. BN*A, MaSai/arjA [ Nca m *- illf -])-


(r j, N<\9ANlAc[BAL], see NETHANEEL).

1. The father of ISHMAEL (2), 2 K. 26:23 (na.09a.viai; [A]) 25 : Jer. 40:8-41:18).

2. An Asaphite musician, 1 Ch. 25:2 (i/aOaAias [B] ; v. 12 vaflaK[B]).

3. A Levite priest sent by Jehoshaphat to teach in the cities of Judah (cp NETHANEEL, 7), 2 Ch. 17:8 G-tai/Oai ias [B]).

4. The father of JEHUDI (q.v.), Jer. 36:14.


(D^n:); 01 N&6iNAioi [AK^L], in 1 Esd. 01 lepoAoyAoi [BAL]; cp D"J-in?, Nu. 8:19 RVmg Nethunim). The members of the clerical order who returned from the exile, according to the lists in Ezra-Nehemiah, belonged to five categories - priests, Levites, singers, porters, and Nethinim (temple-servants). In one respect the usus loquendi varies somewhat : in Ezra 2:55 = Neh. 7:57 the children of Solomon's servants are distinguished from the Nethinim and are separately enumerated according to their families ; but elsewhere they are included under the designation Nethinim (e.g., in the subscription [Ezra 2:70, Oavififj [thaniem]. (B), vaBivfi/j [nathineim]. (A)] to the list already cited). A similar variation is seen between Neh. 11:3 ( LXX{BN} om.)and 11:21 (LXX{BN* A} om.), the fact being that the children of Solomon's servants belong to the class of inferior temple-servants called Nethinim in any case, but are only sometimes singled out as a separate group within it.

1. Organisation.[edit]

These Nethinim constituted a regularly organised class of temple-servants - organised, that is to say, in the manner in which all such classes were organised in those days, in the form of 'families' under family 'heads'. Their family registers are kept with the same care as those of the other servants of the temple (Ezra 8:20, va.0[f]iveifj. [BA ; vaOfiv B b vid - once]). The list given in Ezra 2:43+ ( v. 43 vafffivifj. [natheinim] [B] ; v. 58 vaOeiviv [natheinin] [B], vaffivfi/j [nathineim]. [A] ; v. 70 Qaviei/j. [thanieim] [B], vaffivfift [nathineim] [A]) enumerates 35 such families, or subdivisions, of the Nethinim and 10 families of the 'servants of Solomon'. The second recension of this list in Neh. 7:46+ (va.6[e~\iveifj. [BA] ; v. 6ovat)fiVfi.vet/n.[R*], vaOei (vel potius v\0i)veivei/ui [ B b ], vadivtveifj. [X], vadavei/ji, [A]) makes out only 32 families. Unfortunately we are not informed whether the 220 Nethinim who returned with Ezra are included in these figures or whether there were other subdivisions besides those named in the list. In Neh. 11:21 it is stated that the entire body was under two chiefs named Ziha and Gishpa. The first of these two names is given in the Ezra list (2:43) as that of the head of the first of the subdivisions enumerated; whether GISHPA (q.v. ) is to be identified with Hasupha the head of the second subdivision is very doubtful.

That the Nethinim were really regarded as forming part of the privileged personnel attached to the temple-worship is shown not only by the manner in which they are constantly named in conjunction with the other classes, but also by the fact that they shared with the priests and Levites immunity from taxation (Ezra 7:24). On the other hand, neither the heads of the Nethinim nor those of the singers and doorkeepers figure as signatories to the covenant, though they joined in the oath that was taken (Neh. 10:30).

In Jerusalem, Ophel - i.e. , the southern and eastern slope of the temple hill - is assigned to the Nethinim as their habitation (Neh. 3:26, KaOeivei/j. [B], va.6[f]iv[e]ifj. [NA] ; 11:21). More precisely, they inhabit that part of Ophel which extends to the Watergate in the E. and to the tower projecting from the royal palace (Neh. 2:26; see JERUSALEM, 24). A house of the Nethinim is mentioned in Neh. 3:31 (fiii6a.va6ti.iM [B], pT)6a.va.6iu [K* vid -], rov prj0a.va.0L [N c - a ], fiT]6a.i>va.(>ivi/j. [A]), farther to the N. , near the city wall to the E. of the temple (a little to the S. of the Sheep Gate) ; by this only some sort of official or service house can be meant. A different representation is made in Ezra 2:70 ( = Neh. 7:73 = 1 Esd. 5; cp 1 Ch. 9:2, oi dfdofj.(voi [BA]) where only a portion of the Nethinim, as also of the priests and Levites, dwells in Jerusalem, the others being distributed throughout the 'cities' - doubtless the Levitical cities - in the country. This would assume that, like the priests and Levites, they were not on duty all the year round, but rendered their services at the temple in regular rotation. As to that, however, we have no further details.

2. Origin.[edit]

The Nethinim who returned from the Exile regarded themselves (and were generally regarded) as descendants of the temple slaves who had in ancient times been given 'by David and his princes' for the service of the Levites (Ezra 8:20) ; a small proportion of them, as already indicated, were thought to be descended from slaves given by Solomon (Ezra 2:55). [For an attempt to solve the problem of the origin of the Nethinim and the 'children of Solomon's servants', from a new point of view, see SOLOMON'S SERVANTS, CHILDREN OF, and cp Amer. J. of Theol., July 1901.] As to this, nothing is reported in the historical books ; but it is to be taken for granted that from very early times there must have been an inferior grade of servants at all the greater sanctuaries, and above all at the temple in Jerusalem. These were, of course, not free labourers working for hire - a class of person unknown to Hebrew antiquity but slaves in the strict sense of the word, the property of the sanctuary. Even the child Samuel was given to the sanctuary by his mother (1 S. 1:28+). It is manifest, however, that this form of hierodulia was not common among the Hebrews. The OT offers us no other concrete example of it, and the later accounts make even Samuel to be something quite different, - a Nazirite, to wit. On the other hand, another form of hierodulia was common enough : foreign captives taken in war were given to the temple as slaves - as was customary also with other nations. In JE (Josh. 9:23) we are told even of Joshua that he handed over the Gibeonites to the sanctuary as hewers of wood and drawers of water. Whatever the actual facts may have been in this particular instance, we may be sure that incidents of the kind were frequent, not merely under David and Solomon, from the moment that there was a great royal sanctuary in Jerusalem. In all such instances these temple-slaves were invariably of heathen nationality, not Israelites. The older age found nothing to object to in this ; and, later, such a writer as Ezekiel, by his rebuke of the practice, bears witness to the fact that even in his day foreigners rendered service of this kind at the sanctuary without challenge. He brings it against the Israelites as a particularly shocking charge that they did not themselves take in hand the care of the sanctuary but delegated the duty to others, 'foreigners uncircumcised in heart and uncircumcised in body', whereby Yahwe's sanctuary was profaned (44:7 [cp Che.'s reconsideration of the passage in Amer. J. of Theol., July 1901]). The precept of the law ( Nu. 31:28-30) according to which a definite proportion of the captives taken in war is to be given to the priest as Yahwe's heave-offering is perhaps also to be connected with this ancient usage, although it is equally possible that the law may have had reference only to the priests and Levites private property in slaves.

In post-exilic times the practice which had given offence to Ezekiel was, as was to be expected, abolished ; plainly, however, not in such a sense as to banish those foreigners altogether from the temple, but only in the sense that they were admitted into the fellowship of Judaism by receiving the rite of circumcision. At all events, the names of the subdivisions preserved to us in the lists in many cases betray quite unmistakably their non- Israelite origin - such, for example, as the MEUNIM and NEPHISIM (qq.v.; Ezra 2:50). That the Nethinim enumerated in Ezra and Nehemiah were reckoned as members of the community is a necessary inference from the fact that they came up with the others to Jerusalem at all. Perhaps it comes to this, that reception into the community, which also carried with it promotion to the position of free temple-servants (see below, 3), was the reward for the return. In Neh. 10:29 (vadivfiij. [BA], vaOeivi/j. [N]) the Nethinim are expressly reckoned as belonging to the community and held bound to observance of the precepts of Yahwe. Indeed, at a period when circumcision was required by the law even in the case of private slaves (see SLAVERY) such a demand in the case of temple-slaves became a matter of course.

3. Change in their position.[edit]

Their social position was, as already indicated, at the same time necessarily raised. They no longer appear as slaves in the strict meaning of that word, but as free men of the commonwealth of Israel. It is of their own free choice that they accompany the others to Palestine (Ezra 8:17+, v. 17 ruv affavei/j. [BA], v. 20 va.()eivei/j.[BA]). As free men they pledge themselves to keep the precepts of Yahwe (Neh. 10:29). Such accession on their part to the community was not, indeed, in every case wholly spontaneous. In many instances special persuasion was required to induce them to accompany Ezra (Ezra 8:17+). Nevertheless, their number is very considerable ; in the first list, in addition to 74 Levites, 128 singers, and 139 doorkeepers, we have 392 Nethinim and servants of Solomon, and with Ezra there came only 38 Levites but 220 temple servants (Ezra 8:18+).

The distinction of rank between the Levites and the inferior grades of temple servants diminished more and more as time went on. On the one hand, even in P, the Levites figure merely as a special kind of Nethinim, a gift made by the people to God and by God in turn handed on to the priests for their service ; and their actual position is not in fact different from that of temple servants (cp 1 Ch. 23:28); all the characteristic functions of worship are assigned to the priesthood (see LEVITES). On the other hand, we find singers and doorkeepers, who in the times of Ezra and Nehemiah were still sharply distinguished from the Levites (cp Ezra 2:40+, 7:24, and often), soon gaining admission to the ranks of the Levites (1 Ch. 15:16, 26:1+, and elsewhere). It is, therefore, not impossible that in the end the Nethinim too became Levites. It is at least very noticeable that the Chronicler (who also edited Ezra and Nehemiah), in those parts of his work where he is narrating in his own person and not simply reproducing his sources, mentions the Nethinim only once (1 Ch. 9:2) - not even when relating the assignment of the Levites, singers, and porters to their several duties in the sanc tuary by David, although this is precisely the place at which some allusion to their having been given by David to the temple might have been expected. In the Greek Ezra, finally, even the Levites are spoken of as lep6Sov\oi [Hierodouloi] (1 Esd. l:2-3) as well as the Nethinim (8:22, 8:48); this last word, moreover, is also rendered Na.8iva.ioi. [nathinaioi] (LXX{L} in 5:29, 8:5, 8:49). It would seem as if the author made no longer any such sharp distinctions as had formerly been drawn between the two, but regarded the Nethinim as a mere family (subdivision) of the temple-servants as a whole, that is to say, of the Levites (cp Wellh. Prol. 145).

The Mishna (yebanoth, 2:4 ; Kidd. 4:1) oddly enough still regards the Nethinim as pure heathen and prohibits intermarriage between them and Israelites. This wholly unhistorical theory rests probably on the view that the Nethinim were of Gibeonite origin (see above, 2). How different was the view of the post-exilic age is proved by Neh. 10:29+, where the Nethinim are represented as uniting with the rest of the Jews on this very point, recording their solemn vow never in time to come to allow their sons and daughters to marry any but Israelites. j g_


(HBb? ; NeTco(J>A [BK], NecfcooTA [A in Ezra 2:22], aver. [A in Neh. 7 26 ; om. B], veTia<f>an [L]), whence Netopbathite ( flSbJ; usually VfT<a<j>a9(()i or veT<o<j>a.T(()t, but in 2 S. 2328 efTw^areiTT)? [B], veir<a<f>a8fi-njt [A], o rov ^>ATI<X [L], in 2 S. 2829 verovtfxidfi [BA om.], in 2 K. 2023 i/e^x/xifliemjs [B], ve0taifra.9ei.Tris [A], vr<a<ba.9<.rr\<; [L], in I Ch. 2 54 fiT<a(f>a9. [B], iCh.9i6 viareijiarei. [B], j-ero^ari [L], in i Ch. 1130 i/efliu- <paTei. [B once], i/OTw^aflec [ once], in i Ch. 2" 13 verou^ar [BA], in Jer. 408 vewf>an [N] ; in Neh. 1228 BNA om.). In I Esd. 5 18 i>ere/3as [BJ, veTia<j>ae [A].

A place or district mentioned with Bethlehem, Anathoth, Beth-gilgal, and Gibeah (combining 2 S. 28:29, Ezra 2:22, Neh. 7:26, 1 Esd. 5:18 [RV Netophas], Neh. 12:28), the 'villages' of which were inhabited by Levites after the Exile (1 Ch. 9:16, Neh. 12:28). Men of Netophah rallied round Gedaliah (Jer. 40:8, 2 K. 25:23). Netophah was also the birthplace of David's warriors MAHARAI and HELEB (2 S. 23:28-29, 1 Ch. 11:30, 27:13-15). The site is uncertain. It is plausible to identify Netophah with Nephtoah, which was a place on the border of Judah and Benjamin (perhaps Tappuah ; see NEPHTOAH). This appears to suit the mention of Anathoth and Gibeah as if not very far from Netophah, but would require us to take Bethlehem in Ezra 2:21, etc., as a Benjamite town of that name, which is otherwise un known, unless, perhaps, it represents the Beth-jerahmeel which may have been the name of the centre of the clan to which king Saul belonged (see SAUL, i) ; indeed, the 'Beth-gilgal' of Neh. 12:29 (mentioned there after 'the Netophathite' ) may also have come out of 'Beth-jerahmeel'. 1 Conder, however, identifies Netophah with Umm Toba, NE. of Bethlehem (PEFMem. 3:52). Bet Nettif, a village in the Wady es-Sant, nearly opposite esh-Shuweikeh (see SOCOH), has also been thought to preserve the name Netophah. This may very possibly be the Beth Netophah of the Mishna (Sheb. 9:5; cp Neub. Geogr. 128), but is surely too far to the W. to be the Netophah of the OT.

Schurer (<JK/( 3 )2i84) reminds us of the toparchy of Bethleptenpha (TTIV Be0Ae;m)i <<o TOTrapxiav, Niese : Jos. BJ 4:8:1, 445) or Betolethephenen or Betolethenepenen (Plin. v. 1470), a name which (with Schlatter, Zur Topogr. u. Gesch. Pal. 1893, p. 354 ; and Furrer) he identifies with the Netophah or Bethnetophah of the Mishna. He also identifies both with Bet Nettif, but does not meet the objection just now mentioned. A confusion between Netophah and Nephtoah was natural.

T. K. C.

1 Both 'Lehem' and 'Gilgal' are possible distortions of Jerahmeel.

2 [Gra., Du. read "?1in for [Tin in Ps. 58:9 (L).]


in EV the rendering of two different words.

i. ^nn, harul (Job 30:7, Prov. 24:31, Zeph. 2:9+ {2} ) is rendered in RVmg. 'wild vetches'. LXX has (ppvyava dypia [phrygana agria], 'wild brushwood', in Job ; but in Prov. and Zeph. they seem to have misread it as connected with ^in- Vg. has 'thorns' (spinae and sentes), as also Pesh. in Job. Harul would appear to be the same as Aram. Jlcu, and Ar. hullar is probably akin. As spinae is used to render Xd#i>/>os [lathuros] in Geop. 186, and the Arab, word denotes a vetch, it is now generally held that harul means some luxuriantly growing plant of the vetch kind. For a list of the Palestinian species see FFP 290-291; see also Noldeke, Mand. Gram. 55, and Schwally in ZATW 10:189.

To the view that harul is a vetch it is objected that (1) in Job 80:7 a shrub or small tree must be meant, and (2) in Zeph. 2;9 the plant is associated with saltpits, which would imply some salsolaceous shrub - such as Anabasis articulata, Forsk. - whereas vetches like a good soil to grow on. Possibly, therefore, the Heb. word was applied somewhat differently from its Aramaic equivalent.

2. fc isjp, 1 kimmos (Is. 34:13, Hos. 9:6), and pl. D Jtrep (Prov. 24:31+, where EV has 'thorns' ), may be a general word for weeds of the thistle or nettle kind. Barth (Nominalb., 45) compares Arab, kumash, which denotes useless material or rubbish. If, however, the meaning is to be specialised, the most probable view is that of Tristram (NHB 474) that kimmos is a species of Urtica, the most common in Palestine being U. pilulifera, which is peculiarly addicted to deserted and ruinous buildings. It appears from Is. 34:13 that the plant meant by kimmos is at least distinct from thorns.

N. M. w. T. T. -D.