Encyclopaedia Biblica/Medeba-Meshach

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search



(N1TP, Moab. fcQiniD [MI, 1. 8], 15. 1 'water of rest' ?).

Nu. 21:30 Mcoap [BAFL]; Josh. 13:9, SaiSafiav [B], naiS. [Ba?b], paiSafta (ft sup. ras. Aa) [A], peSafta. [L] ; Josh. 13:16 HeSa/3a [L], BA om. ; I Ch. 19 7 fj.aiSa.fta [B], ftaiS. [], TOV /xr)S. [A], ft)S. [L]; Is. 15 2) TV M<U a/3(e)cTtSos [BNAGT] or omit?; i Mace. 9 36, wSafta [ANY] ; Medaba ; Pesh. usually trans literates [naiNp], but reads -,310 desert 1 in Nu. [mqicL mjffl west in Josh. lSg [ja-|j?s], NTT ib. v. 16. MI, 1. 3 is perhaps to be vocalised NTinp.

A city on the tableland (misor) of MOAB, S. of Heshbon (Josh. 13:9, 13:16) ; according to Nu. 21:30 (if the text is correct) a city of the Amorites. Although the whole tableland - Medeba to Dibon - is assigned to Reuben by D and P in Josh. 13g 16, the Chronicler is aware that it was not Israelite in David s time (i Ch. 19:7). Medeba was seized by Omri ; but after forty years of Israelitish occupation, it reverted to Moab in Mesha's time (.!//, /. 8); certainly it was Moabite when the elegy of Moab in Is. 15/. was written (6th or 5th cent. B.C.?). It was an important fortress during the Maccabrean period, and its people succeeded in captur ing John, the brother of Jonathan the Jewish prince (i Mace. 935-37), for which treacherous act they were after wards made to suffer (Jos. Ant. xiii. 14 9i 102-3). Medeba (M.rjSava) is mentioned by Ptolemy (v. 176) as a town of Arabia Petraia between Bostra and Petra (viii. 202o) ; by Eusebius (f^eSSajSa, fiijda^a) and Jerome (.\fedaba), in OS 13832 279i3, as still known in their time under its ancient name ; and the name occurs also among the episcopal cities of the province of Arabia (Rel. , p. 217). A mosaic map of Christian Palestine and Egypt found at Medeba and described by Clermont Ganneau in Recueil d" Archiol. orient, xi. (1897), p. 161 has deservedly excited much attention. See PEFQ, July 1897 (a translation from Cl. Ganneau, Recueil d Arckfol. orient, xi. 161, and 1897, p. 239; 1898, pp. 85, 177, 251).

The ruins survive and bear their old name, under the Arabic form M&debA. They lie 2940 ft. above sea -level, about four m. S. by W. of Heshbon, with which they are connected by an ancient paved road. The city occupied a low hill a mile and a half in circumference. The whole site is covered with ruins, for the most part dating from early Christian times. Outside the walls (the line of which can be distinctly traced) is a large pool, 108 yds. long, 103 yds. wide and 10-13 ft- deep; it is at present dry. The plain around Madeba, though now desolate, is fertile, and thickly dotted with ancient cities (Burckhardt, Syr. 366 ; Irby and Mangles, 471 ; Porter, Handbk. 303; Schumacher, ZDPV 18n 3 y:; Baed. Pal. (3) 175^; P-Kf" Q, Jl>" 1895, and 1901, pp. 235-246).




The words are synonymous.

1. In OT.[edit]

Cruden, in his Concordance, defines 'mediator' as 'a person that manages, or transacts, between two contending parties, in order to reconcile them'. This might also be given as a definition of 'umpire', which is the word suggested by our translators (in preference to the too theological term mediator ) in mg. of Job 9:33 ( = n pia) as an alternative to the archaic DAYSMAN [q.v. ].

It should be noticed that though LXX here gives ^eo-tVijs, the word represents, not Fl DID (as Adeney in Hastings, DB3 311 n., supposes), but 1J % 3 3 ; apparently LXX is thinking of O JSri C^K (EV a champion), i S. 174, which Driver (TBS 107) explains as the man of the ptraixijuov, who came forward as the /oieffiVr)? to bring the warfare to a close. s words are, eifle fy 6 ^ie<Ti n)s rj/jLtav Ka.1 eAe y^u>i (et yap ... 6 SieA. [A]).

The passage in Job is of great religious interest. The afflicted Job is struggling after a worthier conception of God, and can at first only express it thus, O that there were an umpire between us, who might impose his authority (lit., lay his hand) upon us both i.e. , upon the imperfect God of Job's theology and upon the much perplexed man himself (see JOB [BOOK], 6, col. 2473). In Is. 2:4 EV s shall reprove might with advantage become shall be an umpire to (Che. Proph. Is., shall arbitrate for ).

The idea that the divine anger is liable to be excessive finds similar expression in 1 S. 2:25, which in the Bible of 1551 is thus rendered, If one man synne agaynst another, dayseman may make hys peace ; but yf a man sinne agaynst the Lord, who can be hys dayseman ? This is at least preferable to EV s render ing ; entreat for him (cp LXX) obscures the play upon words, on which see Driver, TBS 27 f. The passage implies the use of 7?D3 as a term for umpire.

2. NT references.[edit]

The NT word is 'mediator' (yueir/TTjs, also in Polyb. , Lucian, etc.), which occurs in Gal. 3:19-20, 1 Tim. 2:5, Heb. 8:6, 9:15, 12:24-25. The verb, occurs in Heb. 6:17 t (wherein God interposed with an oath ). In the last passage the idea is that the divine oath fills up the space between the promise and its intended recipients. In i Tim. 2:5 (RV) Christ Jesus is called the one mediator between God and men, (himself) man ; man (AvOpwiros) is with out an article, to emphasise the human nature spoken of. In Heb. II. c. the phrase is the mediator of a new cove nant, which distinguishes Christ from Moses. In Gal. 3 i9/. , the reference is again to the distinction between the Law and the Gospel. The Law, we are told, was ordained through angels by the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not (a mediator) of one, but God is one. (oiara-yfls 5i dyy^Xuv, 4v \fipi /xetnrou. 6 8 fjievirris ecds OVK H<rTiv, 6 Si 6(6s eft tar iv. ) The com mentator Winer reckoned over 300 different explanations of this hard passage. Amidst such discord we can not wonder that some (Michaelis and Straatman) have rejected the whole passage as an interpolation. This is certainly an arbitrary procedure. The chief difficulty lies, not in the words is not of one (evds OVK ICTTIV), but in the next clause (6 5 6f6s eh to-riv), regarded as a sequel to the former words, and, accordingly, P. D. Chantepie de la Saussaye proposes to expunge them (St adieu, edited by de la S. , 8374^:). It is conceivable that an early reader of the words, Now a mediator is not (a mediator) of one, may have stumbled at them ; God is one, how then can it be said that a mediator is not a mediator of one ? Most commentators, how ever, disapprove even of this plausible solution of the problem. But what explanation can be called more than plausible? For the difficulty here meets a fresh difficulty in the context. What is the force of the words ordained through angels (Stara-yets 5f dyy\uv), which, it would seem to us moderns, add nothing to the argu ment ? There is no reason at all for expunging them ; but perhaps we may be allowed to pass them over as merely inserted out of deference to Midrashic speculation (see ANGELS, 9). We then seem to get a clear argu ment, viz. , that God requires no mediator (such as Moses) 1 to make his promise (the Gospel) legally bind ing, since it is essential to the conception of a promise that it depends on the will of a single person.

The law, therefore, is inferior in dignity to the promise because the latter was given to Abraham directly, not tv \ipi /iecriVou. Apparently the writer is thinking of Lev. 26 46, where renders, o rofxo? ov efiwKf jcuptoc ai a fjiftrov O.VTOV KOU. avo. inftrov TU>I> viHtv Itrpa>jA tv ru> opei Seu-a tv \fipi- Mwixrij. The words iv \eipl M. correspond to fv \<tpi jiecrirou In Gal. (The reference is from Lipsius, //C22( 2 ), 42 .X, and Holtzmann NT Theol. 2 [1897], p. 31, n. i)

Orello Cone (Paul, 1898, 192 f.), however, remarks, Paul seems to have written, not with immediate refer ence to the account of the Sinaitic legislation in Exodus, but rather with the Jewish tradition about the Law as "ordained by angels" before his mind. He adds very truly that in the account of the giving of the law in Exodus nothing is said about angels ; God speaks directly to Moses, and even plans the transanction thus for the sake of the safety of the people (Ex. 1924 Dt. 5$). It is not clear, however, that any argumentative stress is laid upon through angels (di ayytXuv). The idea is that the law, not being communicated to the people directly, is inferior to the evangelical promise. To ex press this it would have been enough to say by the hand of a mediator (ei> x eL pl nctrlrov). The weakening words, ordained through angels, may plausibly be taken as a purely conventional reference.

Ramsay (Historical Commentary [1899], 380) takes a different view. He cannot avoid the suspicion that Paul here is betrayed into a mistake, and is thinking of the other and infinitely more important sense of the words, God is one, as in Rom. 830, He is one and the same God in all His acts, one God makes both the Promises and the Law. In other words, the argument of Paul is a fallacy.

For a criticism of some of the chief current explanations see Holtzmann, NT Theol. (cited above). See also, especially, Lightfoot s Galatians, ad loc., and Lipsius, HC (cited above). Against de la Saussaye, see A. H. Blom, Verklaring van Gal. 820, Th.T. 12(1878), 2i.(>ff. T. K. C.

1 The view that the mediator is Christ (Origen, Chrysostom, Augustine, and most of the fathers) seems to be clearly wrong. Schmider s theory (1826) that the angel of the law is meant (cp Acts 7 38, cp 53) is much more plausible. But Moses could not have been left out altogether in this connection. Talmudic and Rabbinical names for Moses as mediator are 11013) y*CN> ar "d n^ff-


1. Practitioners.[edit]

The most primitive references are to the obstetric art ; see FAMILY, 9^ Four cases have special points. In two of these (Gen. 35:17, i S. 4:19) the mother dies in childbed after giving the infant an appropriate name. The other two are to bring out a subtle point as to the seniority of twins ; Esau is the first-born, but he is (symbolically) seized by the heel by the second twin, Jacob, whose usurpation began, as it were, in the womb (Gen. 25:25). Again, in the birth of Tarnar s twins (Gen. 38:27), the arm of one protruded and was marked by the midwife with a red thread ; but, in the event, the child so marked as the elder was the second born.

A prolapse of the arm may occur ; but unless it had been replaced, and some turning operation performed on the twin thus presenting, the other twin could not have taken precedence of it. The Talmud shows an acquaintance with the Caesarean section, to save the child in the death of the mother.

In Ezek. 16:4, salting of the new-born, as well as washing before swaddling, is mentioned (cp FAMILY, 10). In the Talmud the excessive redness of the infant, or a yellowish or greenish hue, is an indication for delaying circumcision. In 2 Macc. 7:27, a mother in cludes in an appeal to her son that she had given him suck three years. 1 The nurse (nprp) of Rebekah (Gen. 24:59 358) was probably a foster-mother (ropx) ; the nurse of the lame child Mephibosheth an ordinary attendant (2 S. 44) ; cp NURSE.

There are few references to surgical practice. In Ex. 21:19 one who maims another in a quarrel has to pay for the loss of the hurt man s time as well as, in modern phrase, the surgeon s bill. In 2 K. 829 Joram, wounded in battle, goes to Jezreel for his cure. A unique reference to physicians as a class occurs in 2 Ch. 16:12, where Asa, in his sickness, sought not to Yahwe but to the physicians a remark possibly suggested by the king s name, which perhaps means physician (see ASA). Prognostics of sickness, as part of the prophetic function, appear first in the cases of Nathan (28. 12 14) and Ahijah (i K. 14) ; but it is not until Elisha (and of this the Talmud makes a point) that medical skill is prominent among the prophet s abilities in the cure of Naaman (2 K. 5:3), in the prognostic of Benhadad (2 K. 8:7+), in the recovery of the Shunammite s son from sunstroke (2 K. 4:18-35), in medicating the unwholesome water at Jericho (2 K. 2:20), and in correcting the poisonous effects of the pottage of wild herbs (2 K. 441). To Elijah also is ascribed (2 K. 14) a prognostic of the death of Ahaziah from a fall (the king himself having sent to consult the oracle Baal-zebub [see BAAL-ZEBUB] at Ekron), and the restoration to vitality of a widow s son (1 K. 17:17), nearly identical with Elisha s. The one great instance in the later history of prognosis and treatment by a prophet is that of Isaiah in the case of Hezekiah (2 K. 20 15 7).

That the priestly class were the depositaries of medical knowledge seems to follow from the Levitical ordinances for leprosy, for although some of these were wholly ceremonial, and not at all utilitarian, they imply on the part of the priests a skill in diagnosis or in discriminating one disease from another. They were themselves, it seems, so subject to illnesses arising from their frequent bathing and bare feet that a special physician was attached to their service in the temple (Mishna, Shekalim, 5:1-2).

The period of the Wisdom literature is the one in which medicine as an art becomes most prominent.

1 Two or three years is not an uncommon length for the suckling to last even in the present day. The weaning was generally celebrated with a feast. Cp Benz. HA 149.

Solomon's knowledge of the vegetable kingdom was tradition ally said (Midrash) to include that of drugs, and there are also references in the Talmud to a book of cures (niWDT 1BD) attributed to the same king, and said to have been withdrawn by Hezekiah from the use of the people because it alienated them from the Lord (the nearest parallel to this in the OT is Hezekiah's removal of the brazen serpent, 2 K. 184).

The honour of the physician is set forth at length in Ecclus. 38:1-15. Those were doubtless the physicians of whom the woman with the issue of blood had 'suffered many things' (Mk. 5:26), or on whom she had 'spent all her living' 1 (Lk. 8:43). In his healing of the sick Jesus revived that part of the prophetic office with which none but Elisha, in the earlier history, is closely identified. The Essenes (whose name, according to some, means 'physician' ) are specially mentioned by Josephus (BJ ii. 85) as given to the collecting of medi cinal roots and minerals.

Of medical theory there was little native to the Jews, unless perhaps the doctrine of demoniac possession ; but the Greek teaching of the humours and qualities became known among them in the Alexandrian period. The Talmud shows some anatomical knowledge, giving the bones of the skeleton at 248, which must include the teeth. One of the greatest of physiological mysteries, how the bones of a child in the womb do grow, is pro pounded in Eccl. 11:5, the date of which is held to be post-exilic (see ECCLESIASTES).

2. Therapeutic methods.[edit]

We are, of course, better instructed respecting the late than about the earlier periods. In the rabbinical medicine Wunderbar finds ordinary curative methods, by drugs or the like, less frequently in use than occult methods, involving astrology, the wearing of parchment amulets or charms, and sympathy in a generic sense. This is what might be expected, and accords with the gradual spread of Babylonian medicine. Without renouncing the traditional spells for driving out the demons of sickness, the Babylonians superadded to them genuine medical receipts (Sayce, Hibb. Lect. 317) ; cp also MAGIC, 2 b, 2.

The following are among other Talmudic cures of an issue of blood (uterine haemorrhage from fibroid tumour): Let the patient sit at a parting of the ways with a cup of wine in her hand, and let some one, coming up behind her, startle her by calling out, "Be healed of thine issue of blood!" Or, take three measures of onions, boil in wine and give the patient to drink, at the same time calling out suddenly, "Be healed of thine issue of blood ! "

The greater number of the cures in the Gospels and Acts are by the Word, usually addressed to the patient, but in three instances (Jn. 4:50, Mt. 8:5, 15:21) addressed to the parent or master of the patient.

This belief in the power of a sacred word appears also outside the biblical records, but scarcely without an element of superstitious formula. It is found among the gnostic doctrines and is implied by the pretensions of the ESSENES [q.v.] ; and it is stated without am biguity in the Zend Avesta (SBE 23:44) : One may heal with Holiness, one may heal with the Law, one may heal with the knife, one may heal with herbs, one may heal with the Holy Word ; amongst all remedies this is the healing one, that heals with the Holy Word ; this one it is that will best drive away sickness from the body of the faithful ; for this one is the best healing of all remedies.

In some cases of wonderful healing in the Gospels the sick person is touched. In two instances the blind or bleared eyes are simply touched (Mt. 9:27, 20:34), in another instance they are touched with saliva (Mk. 8:23), in another with saliva mixed with clay (Jn. 96 ; cp B. Weiss, ad loc. ). The folk-lore of curing sore eyes was widely spread (Epit. in Plin. AW 28 7). The use of the morning or fasting saliva for bleared eyes persists in some parts to the present time. In the Talmud the saliva of an eldest son is preferred. A special virtue pertained to the saliva of a royal or imperial personage, as in the case of a poor man in the crowd at Alexandria who besought Vespasian so to touch his eyes ; the emperor inquired of his physicians whether the case were a curable one, and being answered in the affirma- tive, he rubbed his saliva on the man s eyes with curative effect (Tac. Hist. 48:1). The fish gall of Tobit (6:48, 11:11, cp EYE, DISEASES OF), is found, with modifica tions, in Pliny ( HN32 :24) and Bontius (Dented. Indorum, 16). Several of the cures of fever given in the Talmud clearly contain the idea of transference to animate or inanimate objects. When the doctrine of magnetic or sympathetic transference of disease was revived in the seventeenth century, Bartholin cited the cases of the scape-goat (Lev. 16:21) and of the Gadarene demoniac and the swine (Mk. 5:13) as precedents (De transpl. morb. 24 [Hafn., 1673]). In Ecclus. 38:9-11, as well as in the Talmud, prayer and offerings are to precede the services of the physician. Intercession is explicitly mentioned in Elijah's (i K. 17:20) and Elisha's (2 K. 4:33) restoration of the widow's son, and in the raising of Lazarus (Jn. 11:41-42) ; also impliciter in the case of the epileptic (Mk. 9:29) concerning whom the disciples asked, Why could not we cast him out ?

Medicinal waters. The waters of the Jordan valley are in many places of a saline and bituminous character, and those of the Jordan itself are said to give a black deposit containing a resinous matter. The bitumen found floating on the DEAD SEA (Jos. Ant. iv. 84) was useful not only for caulking ships, but also for the cure of men s bodies, being an ingredient of many medicines. It contains sulphur, and to the presence of bitumen was probably due the sulphureous water of many hot springs, of which those of Tiberias and Callirrhoe were the most famous (see TIBERIAS ; MOAB, 5). The pools of SILOAM [q. v.] and BETHESDA [q.v.] were reputed as curative.

3. Materia medica.[edit]

The most valuable native product was the BALM OF GILEAD [q.v. ]. The aromatic substances such as myrrh, frankincense, cinnamon, cassia, aloes, calamus, galbanum, spikenard, camphire, are mentioned in OT or NT only as ingredients of incense, anointing-oil, and perfumes, or for embalming ; but their medicinal uses also are referred to in the Talmud (see SPICES). In like manner the art of the apothecary (Ex. 30:35), the powders of the merchant (Cant. 36), and the like ex pressions, relate always to these substances as used for other than medicinal purposes. The MANDRAKE is given in Gen. 30:14+ as a philtre or a cure for sterility. Perhaps the only prescription proper is the poultice of figs for the plague-boil (2 K. 20:7).

There is no clear reference to the great narcotics of the East, opium and hashish or Indian hemp ; but in the opinion of the present writer it is not improbable that the 'honey-wood' 1 of 1 S. 14:27 and of Cant. 5:1, as well as the 'grass' of Dan. 4:25, 4:33, is the latter. Two other obscure substances which have been the subject of much conjecture, and have sometimes been adduced in the same sense, are BDELLIUM and PANNAG [qq.v.].

Criminal poisoning is not mentioned, unless in the ambiguous metaphor of Zech. 12:2 - the 'cup of trem bling' (cp Jer. 51:7), which Jerusalem was to become to her enemies. The Chaldteans had an elaborate know ledge of poisons. Hemlock as a weed in ploughed land occurs in Hos. 104.

1 Cp, however, HONEY, i. On the text see Driver, Budde, and H. P. Smith.

4. Sanitary potions.[edit]

In Dt. 23:12-14 we find a primitive law for the disposal of excrement, from which had probably grown a more complex system involving cloacae suited to a city such as Jerusalem. The disposal of the dead was extramural. Ordinary earth burial, with or without coffins, was perhaps the commonest ; but rock tombs or vaults also were used, not only after the manner of Egypt, the body being embalmed (as in Gen. 50:2-13, 50:26 ; cp 23:4-11), but also more generally, the aromatic substances being applied externally to the winding sheet or the bed on which the corpse was laid (2 Ch. 16:14, Mk. 15:46, 16:1). Several references to burning (2 Ch. 16:14, 21:19, Jer. 34:5, Am. 6:10) are of obscure meaning ; but they seem to refer only to the remains of kings or princes, and to have been subsequent to entombment, and they may apply to the bones only (although Gesenius and others would discover in them cremation of the usual kind). Burial to cleanse the land, in Ezek. 39:12-16, probably refers to the well-known risk of pestilence from the dead unburied in war, famine, or other calamity. The distinctive Jewish practice of burying within a very short time after death occurs as an ordinance in OT only in Deut. 2l:22-23, and there only for the special case of malefactors hanged on a tree, the object being to prevent the indefinite exposure and neglect of the corpse, which has occurred often in other countries. See DEAD, i.

The water supply was naturally of the first import ance. Elisha's treatment of the water of Jericho is enlarged upon, in a rational sense, by Josephus (BJ iv. 83). The same writer remarks that the pool of Siloam was often so low that water was sold from it by measure, whereas during the siege by Titus, that and all the other springs were copious, to the advantage of the besiegers (ib. v. 94). In the story of Judith (7:7, 7:12, 7:21) the capture of the sources of the town's water is made of central importance. Strategic changes in the water supply of Jerusalem were among the greater achieve ments of Hezekiah (2 Ch. 32:3-4, 2 K. 20:20, perhaps also Is. 22:11).

To what extent the Jewish ceremonial law may have grown out of utility, or may have been originally a sanitary code concealed behind religious sanctions, is a question whereon opinions differ. John Spencer (De leg. Heb. ritual. ), in his exhaustive discussion of what the laws meant, almost ignores a medical or sanitary intention. On the other hand, nearly all the writers on Medica Sacra discover a hygienic purpose in circum cision, in the prohibition of swine's flesh, if not also in the much debated rules as to abstaining from blood and from things strangled, as well as in some of the rules for uncleanness of the person - puerperal, menstrual, conjugal, gonorrhoeal, spermatorrhoeal, leprous, and cadaveric. For circumcision, other than as a sign and seal, various advantages have been claimed.

Philo (2:211) says that the removal of the foreskin obviated the risk of a malady, severe, and ill to cure, called anthrax, and Josephus (c. Apion. 2 13) adduces Apion himself as one who, having reviled the Jewish rite, actually had to submit to it in the surgical treatment of an ulcer of the prepuce from which he eventually died in 'great torment'. Neither the 'anthrax' of Philo, nor the eAicos of Josephus is quite intelligible ; certainly nothing of the nature of a simple boil becoming an ulcer, perhaps from retained secretion, is common among the uncircumcised of warm or hot latitudes. But it need not be said that the circum cised are exempt from the ordinary inflammations, phymosis and paraphymosis, which are usually complications of something else, and that they are little liable to balanitis. On antecedent grounds it is held that the cutaneous or epidermic surface, which alone remains after the fold of mucous membrane has been excised, would be less apt to take up and retain infection from impure sexual commerce. Spencer's proposition, circum- cisionem adversus idololatriam plurimum valuisse, if it be true, must apply to the particular forms of idolatry, especially Baal- worship, which were the peculiar trouble of guardians and censors of the public morals in Israel. Maimonides held that circumcision diminished lust ; but it would be as reasonable to maintain that it ministered to it. Others have sought to show that it favoured procreativeness, or that it has somehow har monised with the 'principle of population'.

That the custom was not peculiar to Jews, is shown elsewhere (see CIRCUMCISION).

Like circumcision, the prohibition of swine's flesh is Mohammedan as well as Jewish. Tacitus (Hist. 64) says that the Jews had learned to avoid the flesh of the pig from having contracted a scabies to which that animal is subject. Spencer himself admits, among the unclean aspects of the pig, the fact that he is an unclean feeder. It is only within the last generation or two that the formidable trichina parasite of the pig, communicable to man in the disease trichinosis, has become known to science.

The larva of the trichina is a minute worm, immense numbers of which become encysted in the muscles within minute white capsules or cells shaped like a lemon. Unless destroyed by cooking, the larvae penetrate from the human intestine to the muscles, giving rise, during their active phase, to severe symptoms, sometimes fatal, not unlike those of enteric fever. The pig is also very much subject to the larva of a tapeworm, Toenia solium, which is common among mankind in proportion as swine's flesh is used.

In warm countries the parasitic worms are a peculiar trouble, so that the motive for some general dietetic prohibition becomes stronger.

5. Purifications.[edit]

There are seven forms of personal uncleanness requiring purification :

  • (a) puerperal (Lev. 12) ;
  • (b) menstrual, normal or abnormal (Lev. 15:19-24, 15:25-30) ;
  • (c) gonorrhoeal (Lev. 15:2-15);
  • (d) spermatorrhoeal (Lev. 15:16-17);
  • (e) concubital (Lev. 15:18) ;
  • (f) cadaveric (Lev. 21:1-3, 21:11 ; especially Nu. 19:11-22, cp Nu. 5:2, 9:6-7) ;
  • (g) leprous (Lev. 13-14).

As to (a) the curious point is that the term of purification after a male birth is forty days, after a female birth it is eighty days. Some have tried to find a rational ground for this distinction (Maimonides and Grotius, that the male child is of hot and dry, the female of cold and moist qualities, the latter taking longer to be cleansed) ; but there is no real difference between the pucrperium masculinum and the /. fcemineum ; cp Benz. HA 150. As to (b) no peoples are indifferent to these states of the female, but few besides the Jews (e.g. , in Persia and Ceylon) have thought fit to make rules. The levitical laws as to (a) and (b) were copied in the early English penitentials, the church being substituted for the temple, and the sacrament of Com munion for the Passover. In later times the ecclesi astical purifications of women have been restricted to (a). The somewhat long period of menstrual separation (seven days), on which Michaelis remarks (4:24), is a limit reached habitually in some constitutions, but is, on the whole, excessive.

The uncleanness of (c) is real, in the sense of contagiousness ; that of (d) is imaginary, and of ceremonial import only.

It is only in rare circumstances, such as perhaps plague, that contact with a corpse (f) can possibly imperil the health ; it is, however, not improbable that the rule grew to be applicable to all corpses from some such small root of utility. Tob. 2;9 is a case of sleeping apart after burying the dead. The uncleanness of (g) was real inasmuch as under leprosy are comprehended several forms of highly contagious parasitic diseases of the skin, hairy scalp, and beard, as well as spreading moulds in the walls of houses, and mildews and moths in clothes or the like. It is doubtful whether true leprosy is meant in any verses of Lev. 13-14; but in later times it was only to true leprosy, or to cancerous or other ulcerous affections mistaken for it, that the uncleanness of those chapters pertained (cp LEPROSY).

6. Health and longevity.[edit]

There are many rabbinical aphorisms on the preservation of health and the attainment of old age by regular habits. The Nazarites are an early instance of persons abstaining from wine and strong drink (Nu. 6); the Essenes embraced austere habits and simple diet, and attained to extreme old age (Jos. 28:10). Length of days was one of the usual blessings invoked. Years prolonged beyond three score and ten were labour and sorrow (Ps. 90:10). On the details of the elegy upon the troubles of old age in Eccl. 12:1-7 see special articles, CAPER-BERRY, GRASSHOPPER, etc. See, further, DISEASES.

7. Literature.[edit]

The best treatise is that of R. J. Wunderbar, Biblisch-talmudische Medicin, Riga and Leipsic, 1850-1860. A miscellaneous bibliography is appended by Ebstein to his Die Medicin zm alien Testament (Stuttgart, 1901), from which Wunderbar's work is omitted. c


The Hebrew terms for the Mediterranean are given elsewhere (GEOGRAPHY, 4, i. col. i687/) ; one of them (jnmjn D^rt, EV the hinder sea ) was, we may infer, unknown to the pre-exilic Israelites, for it has probably arisen partly out of an accident, partly out of an editorial process.

The fact is that in the early documents the boundaries of the Land of Promise were very narrow. From the wilderness of Jerahmeel, it was said in the original text of Dt. 11 24, from the river, the river of Ephrath.l as far as the Jerahmeelite Lake shall be your region. 1 The word <"?NDnT, however, became corrupted, the word nnSN, too, lost its initial letter, and, under the influence of a desire to produce a correct description of the ideal boundaries of the Land of Israel, a great but daring editor reconstructed the passage thus, from the wilderness and Lebanon (?), from the river, the river Perath (Euphrates), as far as the hinder sea, shall be your region. The fragments of the word VHDrrT were conjecturally read p-|riN ( hinder 1 [sea]); similar fragments elsewhere (Ezek. 47 18) were misread Ji01 front [sea]). In this way a contrast was produced between the eastern and the western sea i.e., the Dead Sea and the Mediterranean (cp EARTH ii., i). The prospect which Moses enjoyed from Pisgah (Dt. 34 2) was recast in a similar way (see NEBO, MOUNT), and so the way was prepared for the unsuspicious adoption of the two novel terms front sea and back sea in Joel 2 20 Zech. 14s. For a parallel case, see SALT SEA.

The truth is, however, that no comparison is possible between the lake called the Dead Sea and the sea fitly styled the great.

From its size 2 the Mediterranean is fully entitled to rank among oceans ; to the Hebrew it was 'the ocean' (DVI, and by a peculiar idiom n S 1 , Judg. 5:17 ; cp Ps. 46:3 [2]), 'Planted' in it (Ecclus. 43:23, note the readings of Heb. and LXX) were those mysterious islands (D"N) of which merchants spoke, and from it came the cloud no bigger than a man s hand which brought the longed-for early rain. To the traveller the strip of blue bounding the horizon on the W. as he gazes from some height in western Palestine is a familiar and a pleasing sight. The inhospitable char acter of the coast, however, together with other circum stances, made the great sea far less dear to the Israelites. North of Carmel nature has so far assisted man by prompting here a cape, and dropping there an islet, that not a few harbours have been formed which have been, and may again become, historical. S. of this headland, the possibilities of harbourage are limited to a forward rock at Athlit, two curves of the beach at Tanturah, twice low reefs at Abu Zaburah and Jaffa the faint promise of a dock in the inland basin of Askalan, with the barred mouths of five or six small streams 3 (cp ASHKELON, DOR, JABNEEL, JOPPA, MAGDIEL). Barred is no idle term ; the few estuaries are nearly choked by sand. Sand-hills, too, are a source of serious danger to agriculture. The westerly winds continually carry clouds of sand far inland (see GAZA, col. 1651), and only by artificial means, such as are not now adequately used, can great detriment be averted. It is intelligible that the figure of sand by the sea-shore became a habitual mode of speech to the Israelites (Gen. 32:12 Jer. 5:22, 15:8, Ps. 78:27, Ecclus. 18:10, Rev. 12:18 [13:1]). On the phrase, he shall be for an haven (?) of ships, Gen. 49:13, see ZEBULUN, and on the Mediterranean coast in general, see also PALESTINE. T. K. C.

1 On the name Ephrath see PARADISE, 5, end.

2 Its length from Gibraltar to its eastern extremity in Syria is reckoned at about 2100 m.

3 G. A. Smith, HG, 127 /

  • [It may be doubted, however, whether the daghesh in " HJQ

should be preserved. The Egyptians seem to have heard the name pronounced Magedo (see WMM As. it. Eur. 85). Possibly the name has a religious significance. Fresh light is wanted. T. K. c.]


RV Meedda [A]) i Esd. 5:32 = Ezra 2;52, MEHIDA.


(VI JO ; in Zech. 12:11 Megiddon, connected usually with -v/TU 4 [Lag. Uebers. 96]; /uayeSJoi, fj.ayeSSiav, /j^eyeSSia, sometimes /layeSta, fj.ayeSiui , but also HaptSuO [Josh. 1221 B], paye&Siap [Josh. 17 n A], peKeSia [i K. 4 12 B], [fj.f] nayeSaia [i K. 4 12 A], i*a.ySu> [i K. 9 15 A], nayeSauv [2 K. 927 B], naii&Su [2 K. 927 A], na K eS<av [2 K. 23 30 B], fiaytSSei [i Ch. 7 29 B], /j.eraaSSov; [i Esd. 1 27 (29) B], fi.fTa.eS- Saovs [i Esd. 1 27 (29) A], [ev ireSiw] eKKoirTOfievov [Zech. 12 n BNAQr]; MAGRDDO [j n Zech. Mageddon}; in Am. Tab. Magidda, Makida; Ass. Magadfi, Magidu; Egypt. Maketi, Makita, Makedo [see WMM 85 97 167 195]).

1. History.[edit]

A stronghold of Palestine, situated near 'the waters of Megiddo' (Judg. 5:19) in a plain (see VALE, 2) (*<?? Wf ^ lov 2 Ch-3522, i Esd. 1 27 [29]; cp Zech. 12 ii, but this passage may perhaps have nothing to do with Megiddo ; see HADAD- RIMMON). The place is at least as old as the time of Thotmes III. who won a victory over the Canaanites here [on Breasted's researches, see below, 2, end]; it is mentioned also in the Amarna Tablets. Down to the exile it retained its importance ; but from that date onwards it totally disappears from history. It is not mentioned in the NT (cp ARMAGEDDON). The site can only be conjecturally determined. It is men tioned in the OT as the residence of a Canaanite king (Josh. 12:21) and as one of the strong places situated in the region of the plain of Jezreel which, though assigned to Issachar, Asher, and Manasseh, were not taken pos session of by any of these tribes (Josh. 17:11, Judg. 12:7, 1 Ch. 7:29). Megiddo continued to be a stronghold of the earlier inhabitants till at least the time of Deborah, but became Israelite in or before the time of Solomon, who fortified it (1 K. 9:15), and made it the seat of one of his prefects (1 K. 4:12). The supposition has been put forward that it had again shaken off the Israelite yoke in the period of the dynasty of the house of Omri which would explain why Ahaziah sought refuge in Megiddo (2 K. 9:27) ; but it seems preferable to suppose that the fugitive king counted on finding the place in the hands of a faithful adherent of the house of Ahab. Megiddo is usually mentioned along with Taanach ; and as the site of the latter is perfectly certain (see TAANACH) it is natural to look for the former in that neighbourhood. Such a position would harmonise com pletely with what we read in 2 K. 9:27, 23:29-30 (cp 2 Ch. 35:22) of the death of Ahaziah in Jehu's revolt and of Josiah's fatal encounter with Necho J (see AHAZIAH, JEHU, JOSIAH).

2. Site.[edit]

If this assumption be correct Megiddo must have lain on the route of trade caravans and military expeditions from the Philistine littoral and from Egypt ; it must have commanded the passage of Carmel or rather of its SE. prolongation (er-Ruhah) for anyone coming from the S. whose objective was the Jordan Valley, the Sea of Galilee, Damascus, or Mesopotamia. Now, we know that, in the Roman period, a fortified camp, or rather town, of great importance- was estab lished at Legio, the modern Lejjun, {3} 4 m. N. from Taanach ; and since the time of an anonymous writer in 1835 (see Mimchner Gel. Anzeiger, Dec. 1836, p. 920), and still more since Robinson, the generally- accepted view has been that Lejjun is the ancient Megiddo. This identification, which also has the support of R. Parchi (14th cent.), is merely conjectural indeed, but has great plausibility. Eusebius and Jerome, however, supply no precise indication and seem to have been completely ignorant of the site, though Jerome, speaking of the plain of Esdraelon, calls it the plain of Megiddo, and elsewhere, like Eusebius, calls it the plain of Legio. Legio, again, ought in all probability to be identified with Maxi- mianopolis (see the Bordeaux Pilgrim, the lists of bishops, and the data of Jerome). In the neighbour hood there are springs which might be intended by the 'waters of Megiddo' in Judg. 5:19, unless we are to understand the Kishon (cp Judg. 4:6, 4:13, 5:21) which flows at no great distance and which, in the opinion of some, preserves an echo of the name Megiddo in its modern designation of Nahr el-Mokatta . Near the ruins of Lejjun (which include those of a khan well known in the Middle Ages) are two mounds, one of which, called Tell el-Mutesellim (Prefect's Mount), 1 may possibly have been the acropolis of Megiddo-Legio. Excavations here would probably be remunerative.

1 Herodotus, however (2:159), places Necho's fight at May- JoAoi/, and Josephus {Ant. x. 5 1) at Mende ((ifi>Sr)v, al. /ujjSiji/) ; on both statements see JOSIAH. It should also be noted that the Book of Kings need not necessarily be taken as speaking of a battle between Necho and Josiah ; it might equally well be interpreted ax referring to an interview ending in a murder. Chron., it is true, describes a battle. See JOSIAH.

2 It is from Legio that all distances in that region are reckoned in the Onomasticon.

3 The name Lejjun is borne also by other places in Syria and Moab.

Other sites for Megiddo have been sought, farther to the N., in the plain of Jezreel, at el-Mujeidil, \\ h. SW. from Nazareth (Spruner-Sieglin, Atlas); at Mejdel near Acre (Ewald, CF/( 3 ) 3:762-763) ; or at Jedda or Jeda (Schlatter) ; this last proposal would have at least something to be said for it if it could be shown that in Josh. 17:11 Dor and En-dor are doublets (see EN-DOR), and that in no geographical text dealing with the strong places of the plain of Jezreel is Dor-Tanturah, to the SW. of Mt. Carmel, intended, but always En-dor. This being assumed Megiddo alone could be Asherite and it would become more difficult to place it at Lejjun ; but, on the other hand, Megiddo must have been strategically important, and this fits Lejjun better than Jedda.

Lastly, Conder has sought to identify Megiddo with Mujedda , 3 m. S. from Besan (Beth-shean) ; but this hypothesis leaves unexplained the close connection between Megiddo and Taanach ; it creates difficulties in the stories of Ahaziah and Josiah ; it harmonises badly with the order in which the strongholds are enumerated in more than one passage ; it neglects the leading authority of Judg. 5:19, while interpreting Judg. 4:12-16 (cp v. 7) after Josephus in the sense that lays the scene of Deborah s battle with Sisera at the very base of Tabor ; it has nothing in its favour but an obscure passage of an Egyptian text The travels of the Mohar where, according to WMM (195), there is a manifest confusion between the Kishon and the Jordan. G. A. Smith (HO 387) and G. F. Moore (Judg. 47) have argued against Conder's view in a manner which seems to the present writer decisive. Moore with reason declares that the situation is impossible. On the other hand Birch (PEhQ, 1881, p. 232) goes too far in claiming to have made it out as certain that Megiddo was situated at or close to Lejjun. All that can be said is that the supposition is a very reasonable one. Petrie (Syria and Egypt, 176) holds that the campaign of Thotmes III. proves the site of Megiddo to be at Tell el-Mutesellim (see above). Breasted (PSBA 22 [1900! 95-98) writes as follows : A Syrian army which is defending Megiddo, is posted with the south wing at Taanach (Ta annuk), and a small advanced force harassing an enemy advancing northward through the moun tains along the Megiddo road. These operations will not suit Mujedda ; on the other hand, they suit the location of Megiddo at el-Lejjun in every particular. Indeed, if we had no other data for the identification of Megiddo, these facts would decis ively locate it in the vicinity of el-Lejjun.

3. Literature.[edit]

Reland, Pal. 873 893-95 ; Robinson, BR$) 2328-330; Van de Velde, Reisen, 1 265 ; Raumer, PaleettitutW, 446-8 ; Furrer, art. Megiddo in Schenkel BL ; Guerin, Samarie, 2231-8 ; Mtihlau, art. Megiddo in Riehm s HiyBW, 989 ; PEFMem. 290-99 ; PEFQ, 1876, p. 81 ; 1877, pp. 13-20 (Conder); 190-92 (Conder) ; 1880, pp. 223/1 1881, pp. 86-8 (Conder); 232-5 319 ; 1882, p. 151 (Conder); 1894, 151 ; Conder, Tentwork, 66-8 232/1; W. Max Miiller, As. u. Eur. 85 97 167 195 ; Schlatter, Zur Topogr. u. Gesch. Paliistina s 295-9; G. A. Smith, HG 386-8 677; Buhl, Geogr. des alien Palastina, 209/1 Rohrbach, Christl. Welt, 361-364 (1899); Sellin, MDPy, 1900, p. sf- Lu. G.

1 It is too bold to find in this Arabic word for prefect a reminiscence of the prefect of Solomon.


(Judg. 5:19). See preceding art., 2, and cp KlSHON.


(Zech. 12:11). See above, col. 3010 (end).


("pN atp-nO [i.g. ^XTE D], 'God confers benefits', 28 ; Jer. [O5< 2) 8 23] Meetabel, quam bonus Deus ; but the analogy of Jehallelel leads one to suspect an ethnic name [Misrith?] underlying it).

i. The wife of Hadar (rather Hadad) king of Edom (Gen. 8639 /jLfT^er)\ [ADEL], i Ch. 1 50, om. B, juera/3f7/\ [AL]) ; see HADAD i. , 2; EDOM. Probably she was a N. Arabian of Musri (see BEI.A, MATRED, ME-ZAHAB). Marquart (Fund. 10) would read from Me-zahab" (<5 s viov in Gen. =ja, a corruption of p). This, how ever, implies that Matred is not a corrupt form of the name of a country.

2. AV Mehetabeel, grandfather of SHEMAIAH \q.v.\ (Neh. 6 10 /leirarjA [B], /xtra>)A [,x], jie>)Taj3ei)A [A], /ifre/3er;A [L]).

T. K. C.


(NTHO, union ?? MeeiAA[BXAL]). the family name of a company of (post-exilic) NETHIMM (q.v. ); Ezra 252 (MAOyA*. [BA]) I! Neh. 7s4=i Esd. 5:32 (AeAAA [B], /weeAAA [A], AV MEEDA, RV MEEDUA).


(TTO) ben Chelub, a Judahite, i Ch. 4n (/v\&xeip [BA], *? "^-?J? > ** MACHIR, MA.GIP [L]).


pjTPnD), apparently the gentilic of ABEL-MEHOLAH (i S. 1819 2 S. 21 8f) which belonged to the region where Saul's house held its ground the longest (Wi. GI 2197). The ordinary geographical connection, however, is very doubtful.

If Meholah is a corruption of Jerahmeel [Che.], a fresh light is thrown on the designation Adriel the Meholathite. See SAUL, 6 (end); MERAB, PALTI, i.


(^inp, p&OTiJp [Kre, fourth in descent from Cain, Gen. 4:18-19 (J). Not improbably from Jerahmeel. To explain the name as a participle Piel (Budde,L7rgescA. 128) or Hiphil (Nestle, Marg. 7) is inexpedient. See MAHALELEL, and cp CAINITES, 7.

(AL give fxairjA, but D (xaovia, E /uaouujA ; Philo (De poster. Caini, 20) /oierjA ; Jos. (Ant. i. 2 2) ju.apovr)Aos, Jer. (OS 8 9) Mauiahel. Philo s and Jerome s forms are explained respec tively curb fcorjs Ofov and ex vita detis, thus presupposing ^N TID- Some cursives (a b z) give /uoAeAerjA, Eth. Maldleel, Copt. (Fallet, ap. Lag., Or. 2 35) maleleel ( = Mahalelel), or rather Mehalelel. Of the two attested forms Lag. (I.e.) prefers MAHALALEL (y.v.). See also Gray (HPN 164) and Dr. (TBS 14, against the existence of proper names compounded of a divine name and a passive participle). T. K. C.


(JO-inO ; AM AN [BKAI/]), the first of the seven chamberlains of Ahasuerus ( Esth. 1:10). These names are all of doubtful etymology (possibly Persian ; see Marq. Fund. 71), and <Q by no means testifies to their correctness. See ESTHER, 3 ; Crit. Bib.




(|1p1n ">, yellow, or yellowish green, water ; <> BAL , presupposing ppTTI D*p, gives ATTO 0ikA*.CCHC lepAKtON), a place in Dan (not far from Joppa ; Josh. 19:46), which apparently derived its name from some large spring or fountain that formed a marsh. The only striking spot of this kind in the specified neighbourhood is at Ras el- Ain (n m. E. by N. from Joppa), the fountain-head of the Nahr el- Auja, which, in beginning its course, forms a marshy tract covered with reeds and rushes (Rob. BR 4 140). Beside the springs, which are the largest in Palestine, stands the mound, crowned by mediaeval ruins, which Sir C. W. Wilson identifies with ANTIPATRIS (q.v.). The importance of the site must have been early noticed. More than this cannot with certainty be affirmed. The reading is not absolutely certain.

Rakkon (strictly, ha-Rakkon), which follows, appears to be a variant for Jarkon (ha-Jarkon), and both names may be cor rupted from Jerahmeel, cp Judg. 135, the Amorites( = Jerah- meelites [see Crit. Bib.} would dwell in Mount Heres, Aijalon, and Shaalbim. May not the Nahr el- Auj;1 have been originally known as the waters of Jerahmeel ? See RAKKON, also MAKAZ. T. K. C.


RV MECONAH (nipt?), a place of some importance, mentioned after Ziklag, Neh. Il28f (MAX NA [K c - a m e- inf -, BN*A om. , MAMH [I-]). Perhaps the same as Macbena, or (better) Madmannah. These names occur together in i Ch. 249, and MADMANNAH (q.v. ) follows Ziklag in Josh. 15 31. T. K. c.


(iTtp^p, 30, Yahwe delivers? M&ATIAC [LI), a Gibeonite, a contemporary of Nehemiah ; Neh. 87 (BNA om. ). Perhaps from PELATIAH, an expansion of the ethnic Palti (Che.).


(/v\eAxei) Lk. 82428. See GENEALOGIES ii, 3-





1. i Esd.lt 26 = Ezra 10 25, MALCHIJAH 4.

2. i Esd. 9 32 = Ezra 10 31, MALCHIJAH 6.

3. i Esd. !>44 = Neh. 84, MALCHIJAH 9.


(i.e., MALCHIEL, /v\eAx[e]iHA [BX^A] ceAAHM [N*]), father of CHARMIS (q.v.), Judith 6:15.






(pn^^O, 21 ; M eA X iceAeK. the name, if genuine [see below, 3] would mean origin ally either Sedek is king, or Sedek is Malik, J but in later times meant king of righteousness [Heb. 72]. Sedek may have been a Canaan itish god ; cp ffvdvK

[Philo Bybl. ] ; Sedek-melek [*l?DpTi*] occurs on coins, and similar S. Arabian names are quoted [Pratorius, ZDMG 26 426] ; see Baudissin, Stud. Sem. Rel. 1 15). King of Salem, and priest of El Elyon, the Most High or Supreme God, in the time of Abram (Gen. 14 18-20).

1. OT and NT references.[edit]

Melchizedek is thought to be referred to also in the traditional text of Ps. 110:4b as resembling in his royal priesthood the king celebrated by the psalmist - ' Yahwe hath sworn and will not repent ; Thou art a priest for ever after the order (?) of Melchizedek' (EV). Certainly this idea was taken up, in connection with the full Messianic interpretation of Ps. 110, by the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, who treats the short account of Melchizedek in Gen. 14 as a mine of suggestions for the right comprehension of the nature and office of Christ. Recent students, however, who seek for traces of the early Semitic religion have found the story of Melchizedek suggestive in other directions. Here is Abram (Abraham), the ideal and in a sense Messianic patriarch, accepting the benediction of a Canaanite priest-king, whose religion appears to have resembled his own, and offering him tithes of the spoil. Even apart from Christian associa tions, it is surely a fascinating theme.

2. Real character.[edit]

Is this story historical ? or does it at any rate enclose some kernel of genuine tradition ? It is held by many that the Melchizedek -passage, Gen. 14:18-20, has been interwoven with an independent narrative which is more intelligible without it. The evidence of this interweaving is found in v. 22, where, in the middle of the declaration, 'I lift up my hand unto Yahwe that I will not take a thread or a shoe latchet', the editor is thought to have inserted from the speech of Melchizedek the words the 'Supreme God, Producer (see col. 3015, n. 2) of heaven and earth'. From this point of view it is a natural and plausible conjecture that Melchizedek, whose functions and refined religious ideas place him quite apart from the king of Sodom and his companions, is a purely fictitious personage, introduced for some object which has yet to be discovered. His name is apparently modelled on that of ADONIZEDEC [q.v.], a traditional Canaanitish king of Jerusalem, and was probably ex plained 'king of righteousness'.

1 Cp Uru-malik, the name of a governor of the land of Amurru (Syria and Palestine) under king Sargon of Agad6 (L)angin); miilik might be the Canaanite god Melek, even if originally Uru-malik came from Jerahmeel.

2 The places in question are Salim near Nsblus on the SE. (Raed.W, 257 ; see SALEM 2), the Salim in the plain of Esdraelon, NNW. of Ta'annuk (Baed.P), 263), and the Salem or Salumias 8 R. m. from Scythopolis mentioned by Jer. (OS 149 17), and wrongly identified by him with the Salim of Jn. 823 (see SALIM). Ewald thinks that the Salem referred to was a city on the other side Jordan, which must be traversed on the return route from Damascus to Sodom (Hist. 1 307).

3. His city and office.[edit]

Next it may be asked, where did the writer of the Melchizedek -passage suppose the city of his hero to have been situated? It was evidently a sacred city. But none of the three Salems which have been suggested N. of Jerusalem 2 had a reputation for sanctity. Jerusalem, however, would do excellently ; in post-exilic times it would be important to find an early attestation of its pre-eminent sanctity (so De Wette, Dillm., and most). Moreover, if the King's Vale spoken of in Gen. 14:17 (see SHAVEH i. ) is the same as that mentioned in the story of Absalom (2 S. 18:18), and if Josephus is right in placing this valley two stadia from Jerusalem, it would seem that the equation of Salem with Jerusalem ought to be correct. It is, however, not at all certain that the statement of Josephus is correct. Absalom would surely have erected his monument on his property at Baal-hazor, which Robinson well identifies with Tell Asur, situated between Shiloh and Bethel. Besides this, the writer had no obvious motive for half-concealing the name of Jerusalem. The name Salem (or rather Salem) for Jerusalem is found only once elsewhere (Ps. 76:2 [3]), and in that passage may have been dictated by a misinterpretation of Gen. 14:18. The best solution which remains is to read rbw - i.e. , Shiloh - for oW- l Shiloh, which was so long the religious and even the political centre of the land, had a strong claim to be consecrated by a connection with Abraham. There was a Ruth among the Moabites ; why should there not have been a Melchizedek among the Canaanites ?

If the text of Gen. 14 is approximately correct, this is perhaps the best view that can be offered. Still there are difficulties. The priest-king Melchizedek in Canaan, whether at Jerusalem or at Shiloh, is a startling phenomenon ; Jethro was a priest and prince of N. Arabia. More important, however, is the fact that a removal of what the present writer holds to be errors in the text of Gen. 14 reveals an underlying story of a very different character.

'Melchizedek king of Salem' is surely a late editor s attempt to make sense of a badly written text. -j^O plJT sSoi nas arisen out of j^p s "|Voi> an ^ cW which follows is probably OB S according to Josh. 19:47, the original name of Dan - i.e., the southern not the northern Dan. Now Lesham and Ziklag are both corruptions of Halusah. It was according to the first narrator, the priest-king of the sacred city of Halusah (see SHECHEM, ZIKLAG) who came out to meet Abram, and blessed him, and to whom Abram (the hero of the Jerahmeelite tribe, see JERAHMEEL) paid tithes.

The matter is treated more fully elsewhere ( SODOM). According to the view here advocated, Melchizedek has the singular fate not only of being an imaginary personage, but of owing his ideal existence to a scribe s error. If so, the use made of Melchizedek in Heb. 6-7. , becomes mere temporary rhetoric a typology which has lost even its apparent basis in the letter of the OT, and the Melchizedek passage in the MT of Gen. 14 can only be used as a monument of that post-exilic theology, in which the divine creatorship, not unknown before the Exile, but not fully recognised, played so great a part. 2 As such, let no one presume to undervalue it !

It must unfortunately be added that the reference to Melchizedek in Ps. 110:4b is not less doubtful than that in Gen. 14:18. The text of Ps. 110 is admittedly difficult, and probably corrupt, and there is good reason to suspect that v. 46 should run thus nori nn:rSy oSiy 1 ? 1 ni ari, I' establish thee for ever because of my covenant of loving-kindness'. 3 All that can be said to clear up the enigmatical words of the received text has been well summed up by Delitzsch and Baethgen. Cp also Che. Ops. 20-25, and see PSALMS.

1 Cp Jer. 41 5, where MT has iW, but o-aAij^ [B]. in Ps. I.e. has iv eiprftrff. The same emendation has already been proposed by Gratz in Ps. 76 3, with advantage to the sense.

a ."Up (vv, 19 22), producer or creator (of), cp Dt. 326 Ps. 139 13 Prov. 822. See CREATION, 30. The sense possessor (Targ.) is preferred by EV ; cp ^r3j3, EV thy riches ; RVmfr, thy creatures (Ps. 104 24).

3 See Che. Ps.ft). (i) Metrical considerations show that there is some accretion on the text. (2) rnm Sj? is intolerably prosaic. (3) The other so-called royal psalms contain no certain references to historical personages such as Simon the Maccabee or John Hyrcanus, each of whom has been not unplausibly suggested as the hero of Ps. 110. Duhm remarks, How the reference to Melchizedek came to be introduced, I do not know ; perhaps it is the marginal note of a reader. See PSALMS, 29.

  • Cp Ronsch, Das Buck der Jubiliien, 502.

4. Later theories.[edit]

The OT references to Melchizedek exercised both Jewish and Christian doctors. The omission of any reference to his story in the Book of Jubilees suggests a very early reaction against its religious comprehensiveness. Talmudic passages also permit the conjecture that some Jewish teachers disliked the use made of it in the Epistle to the Hebrews. In Nedarim 32b we have, according to Friedlander, 1 a reply to what is said on Melchizedek in Heb. 7. The Christian theologian called Melchizedek without father, without mother, without genealogy. The Talmud, however, states that Melchizedek is no other than Shem (so also Targs. Jon., and Jerus. , Jer. on Is. 41 and Ephrem Syr. on Gen.). The Christian writer applies the words of Ps. 110 to Jesus. The Talmud replies that, owing to Melchizedek s incon- siderateness in mentioning Abraham before God, God transferred the priesthood from Melchizedek to Abraham. (The words, and he was priest of the Supreme God," are taken to mean that his descendants were not priests.) Cp also Sanhedr. 108b, Ber. rabba, 44.

On the arguments in Heb. 5-7 see Bishop Westcott's com mentary, where it is well pointed out that the writer is uncon cerned with the historical character of Melchizedek, and confines* himself to drawing suggestions from the language of the narrative. In this he reminds us somewhat of P\\\\o(De Leg. Alleg. iii. 25 26, Mangey, 1 102 /.). Cp G. Milligan, Theology o/ the Ep. to the Hebrews, 118, 210.

The recent attempt of Hommel to prove the historical character of the account of Melchizedek can hardly be called plausible (AH T 153 ft.), and would probably be modified now by the learned author. Kittel's statements in Hist. 1 i79/ also seem to require some reconsideration. He admits that the passage on Melchizedek has been very largely revised by the redactor, but thinks that the balance of evidence is in favour of its historical character.

See also Rosch, Die Begegnung Abrahams mil Melchisedek, Th. St. fCr., 1885, pp. 321-356. Riisch supposes a tradition of the Jerusalem priesthood in pre-Israelitish times. This was accepted as probable by Hommel, GBA 162, n. 2 (1885).

T. K. C.

1 REJ, April-June 1883, p. 191.


( /weAe* [Ti. WH]), Lk. 3:31. See GENEALOGIES ii. , 3.


( <J 1?9. as if 'king', but probably from Jerahmeel [Che.], cp MALCHIAH ; MeAxHA [ B ], MAA&X [BN] ; MAAcoG, M&Au>x [A]; MeAxmA [L]), a descendant of Saul mentioned in a genealogy of BENJAMIN \cj.v. 9 ii. ], i Ch. 835 = 941^


(-137P [Kr.]), Neh. 12 14, AV, RV MALLUCHI.


(/weAiTH, TR; /weAiTHNH, WH after B and Vv. Acts 28:1 ).

1. Identification with Malta.[edit]

The question as to the identity of the island upon which Paul was ship-wrecked ( Acts 28:1 ) may be regarded as finally settled. The indications in Acts stamp the account of the entire voyage as that of an eye-witness, and give it great value. The view (first found, but without arguments, in Const. Porphyr. De Admin. Imp. 36) that the Melita of Acts is the island now called Afeleda off the Dalmatian coast, pos sesses now merely historical interest.

The 'typhonic wind', which struck down from the lofty peaks of Mt. Ida (Acts 27:14), would have driven the vessel, as she scudded before it (v. 15 ejrifioi Tes ifapofieQa), on the coast of Africa had not her course been changed. Under the lee of Cauda the ship was laid to on the starboard tack (i.e. with her right side to the wind), and the gear was lowered (v. 17, ^oAa<rai>Tfs rboxeuos). By this phrase the author means that the mamyard and mainsail were sent down. This, to a landsman, was the striking operation, and he omits to mention that the ship stood on under storm sails. Such a ship as Paul's, close-hauled on the starboard tack, with a gale from ENE., would make a course about 8 [degree sign] N. of W., at a mean rate of 1.5 mi. an hour ; this would bring her to Malta in the time stated (Acts 27:27). For the details of the calculation, see James Smith, Voyage and Shifrvrcck of St. PauK^, iii,ff. (ist ed. 1848).

The many conditions of the narrative are satisfied only by Malta, and more particularly by the bay of St. Paul (di S. Paolo), about 8 mi. Nw. of Valetta, which has always been pointed out by tradition as the scene of the wreck. The subsequent voyage to Italy by way of Syracuse (Acts 28:12) confirms this result. The view that the ship was driven to the Dalma tian coast rests upon an erroneous interpretation of Acts 27:27 (see ADRIA). It also necessitates the assump tion of a complete change in the wind from its original direction, whilst the view that Melita = Malta involves the supposition that the wind blew steadily from one point of the compass.

2. Criticism of narrative.[edit]

With a north-easterly wind, the sea breaks violently on the low rocky point of Koura which juts out to form the eastern side of St. Paul's bay. A ship driving as was Paul's must inevitably pass within a quarter of a mile of this point, which, owing to the southward trend of the shore in the neighbourhood of Valetta, would be the first land made, and the breakers would give notice of its drawing near. In Acts 27:27 '(the shipmen deemed) that they drew near to some country' (AV), 'that they were drawing near' (RV), should be, 'that some land was nearing them' (Trpocrdyfiv an ordinary idiom). 1 The soundings here vary from 17 to 25 fathoms, shoaling to 15 fathoms at a distance of half-an-hour in the direction of the vessel s drift (v. 28). The anchors held through the night, for the bottom of sand and clay is so good that while the cables hold there is no danger, as the anchors will never start (Sailing Directions, quoted by Smith, op. cit. 132). In the morning they were cut away, and abandoned (v. 40, ftuv et s rrfv OdXacraav not as in AV committed themselves unto the sea : RV is correct). The final element in the scene is scarcely understood. The intention was to run the ship ashore, and it is usually assumed that this was successfully accomplished. The difficulty lies in the words falling into a place where two seas met, they ran the ship aground (AV v. 41, 7re/H7re<r6j Tes 5e eis roirov SiOdXaavov ^w^Ki\av rrjv vavv : lighting upon a place, RV). It is clear that the words describe something unexpected, 2 which balked the intention of running ashore.

It is a mistake to hold (with Rams. St. Paul the Traveller, 340) that 67re (cciAai/ must imply purpose. Equally erroneous is the view of Smith (of. cit. 1427^), that the ship drove on to the beach. It is clear from vv. 43-44 ( they which could swim should cast themselves first into the sea .... some on boards, and some on broken pieces of the ship ) that some space of sea, too deep for wading, intervened between the spot on which the vessel was aground and the shore. Smith interprets the place where two seas met as the narrow sound between the main land and the island of Salmonetta (Salmun) which shelters St. Paul s Bay on the north-west. This channel, not more than one hundred yards broad, a Bosporus in miniature, connects the bay with the outer sea (cp the description of the Bosporus by Strabo, rifAayos o KoAoOcri UponovriSa icaicelvo eis aAAo TO Eu- ffivo>> Trpo<rayopev6fj.evov TTOVTOV, e<m. Be SiOdharTOs rpoTrov TIVO. oJros). Ramsay (St. Paul the Traveller, 3407^), takes it to be the isthmus between the island and the mainland ; but the chart does not show any such isthmus or neck of land projecting towards the island.

Taking everything into consideration, we can have little doubt that by TOTTOJ SiddXarros we should understand a bank covered with water (cp Dio Chrys. 5:83 rpax^a- Kai diOdXarra Kai ratviai), or a reef. The chart shows a patch of shoal water (soundings, 9-12 fathoms) bearing SW from the approximate place of anchorage. The bottom is rocky and foul, and this may be the remains of a submerged rock formerly lying here. It is to be noted that Smith (op. cit. 142) relies upon the wasting action of the sea to account for the fact that the tradi- dional scene of the wreck has now no sandy beach (v. 39, K6\irov . . . %x ovra a.iyia.\6v, 'a certain creek with a shore', AV). Far more likely is it that the sailors would head the ship for the other creek, into which the Afestara valley opens, where there is at the present day a beach. In order to reach this creek, the ship must necessarily have passed over the shoal above mentioned.

1 TTpoo-a^eii/ [B] points to original 7rpo<rr)xe<V ; cp cod. Gigas, which translates by resonare ; B 3 reads irpo<ra.vextiv. See Rams. St. Paul the Traveller, 335.

2 The same thing is to be inferred from the sudden resolution of the soldiers to kill the prisoners, else they would have done it before leaving their anchorage.

3. History of Malta.[edit]

No island so small as Malta has had so great a history. It has been a small edition of Sicily. Its earliest historical inhabitants were Phoenicians (Diod. 5l2 ); to them succeeded Greeks, and in 218 B.C. the island was seized by the Romans, and became part of the Province of Sicily (Cic. Verr. ii. 41846). The language of the fidpftapoi (see BARHAKIAN) spoken of in Acts was probably Punic (bilingual - Greek and Punic - inscriptions in Boeckh, CIG 5752 /. ). Subsequently the shipwrecked party found those who could speak Greek or Latin, or both, at the governor's seat (?at Cittd Vecchia, 5 mi. from the scene of the wreck).

The governor bore the title n-poiTos (Acts 28:7) 'chief man of the island' AV (cp ACTS 13, end). The title is confirmed by an in scription from the neighbouring island of Gaulos (Ciozzo), which runs A[OUKIOS], KA[av6i ovJ vibs K., IIpou6i?i/t, tn-Trevs Pw/iiatW, TrpioTos MeAiraiW K.T.A. ((7/6^5754. Cp CIL 107495, municipii Alelitensium primus omnium).

The island lay on the track of ships trading between the E. and the W. (cp v. n) ; but this is not incon sistent with the failure of the sailors to recognise an unfrequented part of the coast (Acts 27:39). w. j. w.


(/vxeAiTHNH [WH]), Acts 28i, RV m ?-, EV, MELITA.


(D^riN ; nerrONCC [BAFL])are mentioned among the various kinds of pleasant food which the Israelites had enjoyed in Egypt (Nu. 1:15 t). The reference is almost certainly to the water melon Citrullus vulgaris, Schrod.

The Hebrew word, which, according to Lagarde (Uebers. 10), may be connected with a conjugation (of the Sem. verb) which is lost except in Ethiopic, is perhaps related to -v/rOB (i n Ar. to cook ; cp the etymology of Treniav). The same word is found in Samar., Syr. (pattlhd) and Arab, (bittih) ;1 the Arab, word reappears in Sp. albudeca, Fr. pasteque.

The Hebrew abattiah is mentioned not unfrequently in Mishn. and Talm. , and is distinguished from the [iBS^D (/uTjXoTreirwi ), by which apparently the melon proper Cucumis inelo, L. , is intended. 2 Whilst there is no clear proof that Cucumis melo was cultivated by the ancient Egyptians, the water melon on the other hand, which Livingstone found to be indigenous in tropical Africa, is represented on extant Egyptian monuments (DeCandolle, Origines, 209). See Hasselquist, Travels, 2557. See FOOD, 5. N. M.


nV^H ! Theod. A/v\eAcdA [B], &/v\ep- C<\p [A]; <H [87], however, has ABiecApl, which in Dan. 13 it gives for MT s Ashpenaz ; > >?> in v. 11 ; >jJ^O in v. 16 ; Malasar], the name, personal or official, of the courtier set over Daniel and his friends at the beginning of their court life, Dan. 1:11 (&M6C&A [Q*], &/v\eAc. [Q a ]). 16. AV treats the name as personal in the text, but as official in the margin ; RV takes the marginal rendering of AV ( the steward ) into the text.

The course adopted by King James's translators in the text can be justified only on the supposition that the definite article which is prefixed to "1S7D in MT arose out of a very early incorrect theory that isSo was an official title, whereas in reality it was a personal name. Certainly none of the ancient versions took the initial n to represent the article.

If however the witness of the versions be disallowed, how shall we explain nsVo, taking it as a corrupt form of some Babylonian word ? Schr. (CO T2 126) and Frd. Del. (Glosses Babylonica; in Ba.-Del. , Daniel [1880]) derive nsSa from Ass. massaru, 'guardian'. This, how ever, is in more than one respect improbable. 3 It would be better to correct "ron into SSN (cp Theod. ), 4 and to explain the name as a compound of amel or atnil, man of, and the name of some God (cp EVIL-MERODACH). But the fact that LXX has afitevSpi both in 1:11, 1:16 and in 1:3 points most probably to the right explanation. Read in 1:11, and Daniel said to Belshazzar, prince of the eunuchs, who had been set over Daniel, etc. Belsarezer was a favourite name (see ASHPENAZ).

Here there is first a slight transposition, next a change of a point ( "IJP for "^D), and thirdly a correction of ix^on into "IXNtl Sn- Note the /in the form given in Pesh., and for further details see ASHPENAZ. [Since the article ASHPENAZ was pub lished, Professors Prince and Driver, and Dr. J. Taylor in Hastings DB, have commented on Melzar. None of these scholars, however, has explained the word, which, being the product of textual corruption, is in fact inexplicable. But Prof. Prince (Daniel, 196) has unconsciously advanced towards the explanation of ajSiecrSpi given already under ASHPENAZ.]

T. K. C.

1 This, according to Frankel {Aram. Fremdiv. 140), is a loan-word from Syr.

2 See esp. Talm. Jer. Kil. 1 2.

3 r. If a iquid were linserted to compensate for the omitted doubling of x, we should have expected r rather than /; cf Aram. ND13, Dan. 4:20, for Heb. KD3 (but cf Konig, Lehrgeb. 2 i, pp. 472yC). 2. Massaru most commonly appears in the form masar (st. constr.), followed by biti, ekallim and the like (Del. HWB 4 2 3>-

4 More probably Theod. read isVsn-






i. main, askarah, Lev. 2:2, etc. See SACRIFICE.

2. JV13T, zikkaron, Is. 578 RV (AV remembrance ); pos sibly some heathen symbol is meant (see SBOT, ad loc., and cp Marti) ; but more probably we should read TJjisnn, 'thy golden thing' (i.e., 'thy golden calf'); cp Ezek. 16:17, where "I3J ??;fi 'male images', should be |"in "271J, 'golden images', which suits the context, and removes an undesirable expression. For the contemptuous 'golden thing' cp NEHUSHTAN, brazen thing. See CALF, GOLDEN. T. K. C.


(Sp) occurs in Hos. 96 Judith 1 10 (M/V\- 4>eu>C [genit. BX c - a A]), and in RV "S- Is. 19 13. The form (cp Ass. Mimpi) stands midway between the full Egyptian civil name of the city and the unpleasing Heb. abbreviations, Moph and Noph. See NOPH.


(|3-1OP, v. 16 pPIO Kt.), the name of one of the seven princes at the court of Ahasuerus (Est. Ii4, om., v. 16, MOYX& OC [BK*AL tt ], BOY" r<MOC [L 3 ]. 1 MA,/V\OYX<MOC [N c - a ], v.n [BAL/], 6YNOYXC [K*]- MOYXCOC [N c - a ], Xeoc [K c - h ]). See ADMATHA, ESTHER, 3.


(Dmp, 62, 84, comforter, cp NAHUM, NAHAM, NEHEMIAH; MA.NA.HM [BL, and in 2 K. 15:14 A], MANAHN [A], cp MANAEN), son of Gadi (see end), and king of Israel after Shallum, 742-737 B.C. (see CHRONOLOGY, 34), 2 K. 1514-23. He is one of the usurpers referred to by the prophet Hosea (?4-7), and was enabled by Tiglath-pileser s help to plant himself so firmly that he transmitted his crown to his son Pekahiah. Tiglath-pileser him self (see A^Z? 231) speaks of having received tribute from states ranging from Cappadocia to Palestine, and apparently places this event in 738 B.C., though Guthe (GV/232) on theoretical grounds doubts the accuracy of the date. One of the tributary states, according to the general opinion, is Samaria. The first king mentioned is Kustaspi of (city) Kummuh (in the Kommagene of classic writers); then comes Rasunnu of (country) Gar- imiri (i.e., Aram-Damascus), and next Mf-ni-hi-(im)-mf (cp col. 2921, begin.) of (city) Samfrina and Hiriim of (city) Sur i.e. , Tyre. It is most natural to identify the third king with Menahem of Samaria. Still, con sidering that just before Tuba'lu, king of Sidon, Sen nacherib in the Taylor cylinder mentions Minhimmu, king of (city) Samsi-muruna, the doubt arises whether the Assyrian scribe may not here have given the name Samfrina to some other city, such as Shimron or Shimron- Meron, with which the Ass. Shamshi-muruna has been identified 2 (see Zimmern, ap. Ruhl, Chronol. der Konige, Deutsche Zt. f. Gesch.-iviss. 1268, but cp SHIM- RON). If the ordinary view is correct, Tiglath-pileser refers in his inscription to the event which is thus related in 2 K. 15:19 [In his days] came Pul king of Assyria against the land, and Menahem gave Pul a thousand talents of silver, that his hand might be with him to confirm the kingdom in his possession (see PUL). Un fortunately the Assyrian inscriptions appear to know nothing of an advance on the part of Tiglath-pileser so far south as Samaria at the period referred to.

However this question be settled, the account of Menahem s payment of tribute in 2 K. 16:20 is historically interesting. It would seem that in Menahem s time the landed proprietors shared the burdens of the state as well as military service among themselves. If we reckon the talent at 3000 shekels, the assess ment spoken of in the Hebrew text permits the inference that there were then in the Northern Kingdom 60,000 families possessed of heritable lands (Meyer, GA 1449; Kittel, Hist. 2 334).

Menahem was doubtless a rough, relentless warrior, probably a Gileadite, for GADI [q.v. ] can hardly be his father's real name. This may help to account for his barbarity towards the inhabitants of Tappuah certainly not Tiphsah at the opening of his career (2 K. 15 16 ; see TAPPUAH). T. K. c.

1 o /Soiryaios is elsewhere the Gk. translation of the term 33Nn applied to HAM AN (q.v. ] ; see also Marq. Fund. 6gf., and note that the first Targ. on Esther identifies Memucan with Haman. See ESTHER, 12.

2 If our Menahem is meant, why does not Tiglath-pileser call him king of Bit Humri, Bit Humri being the usual designation of the land of Israel?


RV MENNA (MCNNA [Ti. WH], cp per haps Nab. fcMlttD, 13UQ ; in Gk. inscr. M&NOC). a name in the genealogy of JESUS, Lk. 3:31. See GENEALOGIES "-. 3-


(&MP 6W.O fD lB-l 7pri ; M&NH [i.e., HplGMHTAI 87, e/v\T- RHC6N Theod.], GeKeA [i.e., eCTATAi K<yreAonc0H 87. eCT&6H Theod.], (h^pec [i-e.. e^HpTAI 87, AmpHTAI Theod.] <8 IiA Theod. ; note too MANH 4>&pec 6eKeA in introd. to chap. 5 in MS 87 ; mane thecelphares], mysterious Aramaic words in Dan. 5:26 (cp 26-28). Belshazzar and his lords, as they banqueted, and drank wine from the golden vessels of the old Jewish temple, were startled to see these mysterious words traced by the fingers of a man's hand on the wall. The wise men of the Chaldaeans were summoned to interpret what was written, but failed to do so. Then Daniel was called, who interpreted the words to mean that God had numbered Belshazzar's kingdom ; that he had been weighed, and found wanting ; and that his kingdom had been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians. It will be noticed that Mene is not repeated in the inter pretation (v. 26), and that Peres is there substituted for Upharsin. On both points Theod. agrees with the interpretation. Whether vv. 26-28 give the true meaning of the words - in fact, whether the words stand in their original context - has been much discussed. As Bevan and Marti point out, ^pn and sis cannot mean 'weighed' and 'divided', as the interpretation in vv. 27-28 seems to require ; the form l'oiwi too, has no apparent sense. This seems to them to show that the phrase NJO K:D -< D1S1 Spn was not invented by the author, but borrowed from some other source, the interpretation in vv. 26-28 being an attempt to extract a suitable meaning from the words in defiance of grammar. Bevan and Marti, therefore, agree with Clermont-Ganneau (JA viii. series 836^!), who explains a 'mina, a shekel, a half mina' ; cp Noldeke (ZA, 1886, p. 414), and see MINA, SHEKEL. For 012 = half mina, note the late Jewish usage (Levy s NHWB 4123) and in particular an Assyrian weight now in the Brit. Mus. which bears the Aramaic inscription ens (see Cook, Aram. Glossary, 99). Hoffmann (ZA, 1887, pp. 45 ff. ) takes Vpn as in apposition to the second N:D = the mina in shekel-pieces i.e., darics or gold- staters. It would be better, however, with Haupt (Kamph. , Daniel, SffOT) to render, 'There has been counted (wo) a mina, a shekel, and half-minas'. * The mina might mean Nebuchadrezzar ; the shekel, Bel shazzar ; and the half-minas the power of the Medes and Persians. This use of weights to denote persons is found in the Talmud, where an inferior son of a worthy father is called a 'half-mina, son of a mina', and so on. Prince (Mene, mene, etc., a dissertation [1893], 8 ; Bk. of Dan. 113 [1899]) suggests further that there may be a historical background for the statement about 'Mene', etc. , though this is a matter of pure conjecture. J. P. Peters (JBL, 1896, p. 116), however, thinks (with Behrmann) that these combinations are too fanciful, and would read in v. 25 (following Theod. , but omitting the points), NJD D19 Spn, these roots meaning simply, 'Number, weigh, divide' (or, Persian), which Daniel has to fit with an interpretation suitable to the circumstances, whilst D. S. Margoliouth (Hast. DB 8341^) proposes 'he has counted, counted, weighed, and they assess' (v. 25), and 'he has counted, weighed, assessed' (vv. 26-28).

1 So also Bludau, Die Alex. Uebers. d. B. Dan. 150, n. 3 (1897). Strictly, this implies the readings 019 and f B B.

To sum up. The ordinary interpretation of the mysterious sentence (see RV mg) is plainly inadequate. All the learning in the world, however, will not make Clermont-Ganneau's or even Haupt's theory more than moderately plausible. It has been suggested by J. Marquart (fund. 73) that the legend of the writing hand has its origin in the account of the apparition seen by HELIODORUS in 2 Macc. 3:24+. As Niese has shown, Jason of Gyrene s history, which forms the basis of 2 Macc. , is the work of a contemporary of the events related ; this shows that the writer of Dan. 5, if of the Maccabean age, may well have known of the story of Heliodorus s vision. It does not appear that Marquart emends the text of the mysterious sentence in Dan. 5 ; but with 2 Macc. 3:25 before us, it is difficult not to read [N]chs Sap [tmo] Kna [mehe mehe qetel peresh], 'smite, [smite], slay, thou horseman' (Che. ). This theory is surely of interest, and so too, is the explanation which it suggests, of the method pursued by the editor of the story in Daniel. For we can hardly doubt that the sentence originally stood in Daniel as emended, with the alteration DIB, 'O Persia', for cha 'horseman'. Now we can see why it is said in v. 30, 'In that night was Belshazzar . . . slain' ( vap ; cp *?ap in the sentence on the wall). On a further question see Crit. Bib.

Boissier points out that predictions traced by a mysterious hand are referred to in a cuneiform soothsaying tablet (Brit. Mus. no. 4030 ; see I SBA 18237^ [1896]). Line 3 says, If in the middle of the ekallu (^ n) a finger describes a figure, brigands will rule the land. T. K. C. S. A. C.


(M6NeA&oc [AV]), a Hellenising form of the Heb. Menahem ; cp Eliakim and Alcimus, Jesus [JeshuaJ and Jason, etc. ), brother of Simon the Benjamite (cp 2 Macc. 3:4), and probably one of the sons of Tobias (We. IJG 200, n. i) ; according to another (and less likely) tradition given by Jos. (Ant. xii. 5i) he was Jason s brother. See ONIAS, 10. He was sent to Antioch bearing tribute, and while there was able by means of a bribe to supplant the high priest JASON (q. v. ) (2 Macc. 4:23+). Although nominated, his task was not an easy one. Jason, who had the popular support, was indeed forced to fly ; but lack of funds, and the con sequent non-payment of tribute, rendered it necessary for him to appear before the king. Antiochus, however, was away engaged in quelling a petty insurrection, and Mene laus by presents of vessels stolen from the temple at Jerusalem was able to subvert ANDRONICUS (q. v. ), the king s deputy; and when the faithful Onias III. (then at the temple of Daphne near Antioch) threatened to divulge the arrangement, he was persuaded to leave his sanctuary and was treacherously murdered by the deputy (on the accuracy of this report, see further ONIAS, 7-8). The popular indignation was shared by Greeks and Jews alike (4:36), and complaint having been made to Antiochus the murderer suffered a well-merited punishment. In Jerusalem, moreover, the repeated spoliation of the temple treasures under LYSIMACHUS (q.v. ), the brother of Menelaus, and the knowledge that the money so obtained was put to the basest uses, incited the people to revolt, and Lysimachus met his death at the hands of the mob. An accusation was laid against Menelaus and three witnesses were sent by the senate to the king at Tyre. Menelaus soon saw the hopelessness of his case, and, following out his usual habit of bribing, won over Ptolemy Dorymenes, who induced the king to discharge the case. The wretched witnesses were put to death, a fate which they would not have met with even at the hands of the rude Scythians (as the writer relates, 447). See, gener ally, ONIAS.

We hear but little more of Menelaus. When Jason attacked Jerusalem, he took refuge in the citadel (5:5+), and after the city had been put to the sword, it was he (riav v6/j.tai> icai TTJ? jrarpt Sos jrppSoTijs, v. 15) who guided Antiochus in his plundering expedition in the temple, and after the short reign of terror was over, Menelaus was left in charge with a Phrygian (v. 23).

At the time of Lysias treaty with the Jews, Menelaus is un- mentioned, and the high-priesthood is in the hands of ALCIMUS (q.v.). At all events he does not seem to have been idle, for, when Antiochus Eupator was proceeding on his campaign against Judaea, Menelaus is depicted in his familiar character as sedu lously flattering the king, in the hope of ultimately being placed over the government. Lysias, however, warned the king, and Menelaus was put to death miserably (2 Macc. 13:3-8).

For the view that Menelaus is the cruel shepherd in Zech. 11:15+, see ZECHARIAH, 7. s. A. C.


(MeNec6[ec]eo)C [AV]), father of APOLLONIUS [q.v. , 4], 2 Macc. 12:2.


("Opm]), Is. 65 ii EV m s-, AV number, RV 1 destiny ; see FORTUNE AND DESTINY.


(Lk. 831 RV). See MENAN.


(Jer. 51 59- AV m e-). See SERAIAH, 4.


Judg. 20:43 , EVe- (nPltilp; <yno Noy* [BN J ]), where (or from which) the Israelites trode down (?) the Benjamites in a war of extermination. AV mg prefixes 'from', EV mg 'at'. nnijp, from NOHAH [q.v.], would be better (cp Moore, ad loc.); but surely nniJD is simply a corrupt duplication of po ja, Benjamin (cp Bu. ). T. K. C.


(nimtSn), i Ch. 2 52 RV, AV MENAHETHITES.


(RV) OF (D^ llfl? fl^K, RV mg - 'augurs' oak or terebinth ), is mentioned only in Judg. 9:37 (HAOON M&coNe/v\eiN [B], Apyoc ATTO- BAenONTCON [AL]). It was a point that could be seen from Shechem : one company, said Gaal from the gate, cometh by the way of the oak of Meo- nenim. 1 Perhaps we should read VNDITV, Jerahmeel, a place-name which may also appear in the distorted forms Arumah (v. 41) and Tormah (v. 31). See TORMAH, SHECHEM ; and for an analogy for the emendation, MAON, 2 ; see also MOREH, SHECHEM.

T. K. c.


(n3W ; MAN&0[e]i [BA], MACON- A0ei [I^])> trie father of Ophrah, according to i Ch. 4 14. Most probably a corruption of nmo, 'manahti'. See i Ch. 2:54, where the name (RV the MANAHATHITES ) occurs with the article. Manahti should also be read for H ATH ATH [q. v. ] in 4 13. Thus vv. 13 and 14 become consecutive. T. K. c.


(DPSP or ni?D D ; in Jer. Kre.), a Moabite city near Jahzah (Jer. 48 21 : fj.ia<f>as [B], cw^afl li c a ], ti<a<j>a.e [AQ]), spoken of as Reubenite and Levitical : Josh. 13 18 (pai<}>aa0 [BL], M<l>aa0 [A]), 21 37 (na<f>a. [BL], na<T<t>a [A]), i Ch. 6 79 [64] (Mf<Ma [B], Quad [A], ^u*4aa0 [L]).

Clermont-Ganneau (Rec. d Arch. 457) identifies with the Mesa (Mefa ?) of the Notitia and a village in the Belka called in the Mar& sid (1300 A.D.) Meifa a. According to OS 279 15 139 1, a Roman garrison was stationed at Mephaath in the time of Eusebius and Jerome. The name has probably been distorted from riSSID, Mizpath. T. K. C.

1 N : a group of cursives in H-P, the text of which is represented by the Catena. Nicephori (Moore, Judg. 45/).


(ntramsp, 42; Me/v\4>iBoc0e [B], -6<M [A], MM(t>lBAA\ M)

i. Saul's son (by Rizpah), who, together with his brother Armoni (rather Abinadab? see SAUL, 6), was given up to the Gibeonites for their blood vengeance (2 S. 21:8+). See RIZPAH.

2. Son of Jonathan, and grandson of Saul (2 S. 9:1 etc.), also called Meribaal (?). See MERIBAAL.

3. According to LXX{BAL} in 2 S. 3:5, (but lepoyOt, A 1?al in 87, A * 171 *-* in 38), the name of Saul's son and successor, commonly known as Ishbosheth or Eshbaal (Ishbaal?).

1. Name.[edit]

The historic trustworthiness of the names Ishbosheth and Eshbaal is altogether doubtful ; the name Mephibosheth appears to conceal the true, original name for which textual criticism has to seek. According to the prevalent theory, the latter part of the traditional name is a substitute of bosheth, shame for Baal (cp ISHBAAL, ISHBOSHETH) ; the former part is admitted to be obscure. This theory, however (viz. , that names compounded with baal were so repugnant to later editors that baal was changed to bosheth) is very difficult when we consider that it is in the late Book of Chronicles that we find the forms Esh-baal, Merl-baal, and Merib-baal, whilst Jastrow s theory that there was a deity known by the name of bast ( = bosheth), how ever learnedly defended, could be accepted by critics only as a last resource. A searching textual criticism appears to suggest a more probable explanation.

nBQBD (commonly read Mephibosheth) can be traced back to an original form [SxlonT < cp 72>S, Gen. 26:26, i.e., *?KDnT- The stages of corruption and expansion are (a) nCBi (b) HDB, (c) TIE S, (d) nEONs, (e) nt^NsO- In (d) and (e) it will be noticed that a and 3 are inserted, the Q under the influence of SyanD, the 3 to produce a possible sense (pi-boseth, 'mouth of shame' ). In (a) s represents >-|- (v) and (c), however, are the most interest ing, because these stages are closely connected with the legend (as we must call it) of Saul's grandson. 1

In 2 S. 9:3, when David inquires for a surviving repre sentative of Saul, he is told of a son of Jonathan, called Mephibosheth, who is lame, rips (on both his feet, 913). The story, which is told in 44 to account for this lame ness, evidently has a romantic character. The prob ability is that Mephibosheth (if that was the youth's name) was said to have been lame in order to account for his name, which was given in the record to which the narrator had access as Pisseah (cp PASEAH = Jerah- me el in a Calebite genealogy). In a later state Pisseah became first Pi-bosheth and then Mephi-bosheth ; but the anecdote which had arisen when the name was given as Pisseah remained. It is remarkable that Saul's succes sor was also called Mephi-bosheth by some (see above, 3). This suggests that Ishbosheth is probably an expansion of I-bosheth (the sh being repeated to produce an ety mology), where I is a relic of Mephi, and conse quently that the tradition of the lameness of the bearer of the name referred originally not to a grandson but to a son of Saul. The true name of Saul's successor, how ever, was probably either Jerahme'el or an easy popular distortion of it such as Mahriel. We do not happen to find the form Meribaal (a corruption of Mahriel ?) applied to Saul s successor ; it is, however, applied to Saul s grandson in i Ch. The true name of the grandson of Saul and son of Jonathan may very well have been forgotten.

As to Eshbaal ( Ishbaal ?), the name which is thought to take the place of the Ishbosheth of i K. in i Ch. 8:33 and 9:39, it is most probably a corrupt variant of Malchishua, which, how ever, is itself also corrupt (see MALCHISHUA). Possibly the scribe who produced it may have been confirmed in his error by a reminiscence of Meribaal ; but that Eshbaal or Ishbaal is an interpretation of Meribaal cannot plausibly be held.

The result obtained above with reference to the name Mephi bosheth casts a light on the singularly premature statement re specting Saul s grandson Mephibosheth in 2 S. 4:4. According to Budde, 2 S. 4:4b should be placed after 2 S. 9:3, since it relates the cause of the lameness referred to by Ziba. (Ki.-Sa. 248). This is plausible ; but how shall we account satisfactorily for the mis placement ? Probably 2 S. 4:4 has been recast by an editor ; i.e., it has taken the place of an explanation (now lost) of the name of Pisseah (see above) borne by Saul's son and successor. The passage may originally have run, 'Now Saul s son was lame of his feet. He . . . fell, and became lame ; and his name was called Pisseah'. The lameness of Saul's son may well have been referred to in order to account for the ease with which the poor weak king was assassinated. It is very possible that the original story of the assassination was not exactly that which we now read in 4:2-3, 4:5-12.!

1 (b) may also be connected with a passage in the early history of Jerusalem. Blind (c liy) and lame (D nDfi) n 28.668 are apparently fragments of Jerahmeelites (D ^KDrTV). For fuller details see Crit. Bib.

2. History.[edit]

We have already touched on some historical points in dealing with the name ; names, in fact, often help to make or mar historical traditions. Here, we need speak only of the person best known (however incorrectly) as Mephibosheth. When David sent for him, he was residing probably at Beth- jerahme'el, the centre of his father's clan, also known as Beth-gilgal (see SAUL, i). The impression con veyed by the MT of 2 S. 9:4-5. that he was at the time in the house of an unknown private individual, whose name and family are remembered, in an obscure Gadite town, can hardly be correct. We may accept the tradi tion that David (on politic grounds?) guaranteed to Mephibosheth the lands which had belonged to his grandfather, but appointed Ziba, a servant of Saul, whom David had probably won over to his side, as 1 Mephibosheth's steward. This fact, however, has been decorated, so to speak, by an admirer of David, by whom this king is represented as basing his act on the sacred covenant between himself and Jonathan, and as expressing the kindliest solicitude respecting the house of Saul, although from another source we learn that David deliberately handed over seven of Saul's descend ants to the blood-thirsty Gibeonites (2 S. 21:1-14). The truth probably is that David sent for Mephibosheth, not on account of his covenant with Jonathan (which is too probably, as Winckler has shown, an idealisation of history ), but with the view of putting him under surveil lance, lest he should assert his claim to his grandfather's crown.

The narrative in 2 S. 21 just referred to should probably be prefixed to 2 S. 9 ; v. 7, however, which states that David spared Mephibosheth on this occasion, is evidently an interpolation which arose after the transposition of the section. The passages relative to David's covenant with Jonathan are also most prob ably of later origin (see S. A. Cook, AJSL, April 1900, p. 169 f.).

Saul's grandson is also mentioned in connection with Absalom's revolt (2 S. 16:1-4, 19:24+ [25+], and perhaps elsewhere). According to Ziba, he neglected to join David because he had conceived hopes of being made king by the house of Israel. For this David is said to have dispossessed Mephibosheth, and made Ziba lord of Saul's lands. Later, Mephibosheth came to meet David, and sought to explain his conduct. David, however, does not appear to have been entirely satisfied, and directed Mephibosheth and Ziba to divide the land. Such, at any rate, is one tradition.

It is remarkable, however, that, according to another tradition, which survives only in a distorted form, it was Mephibosheth, not Ziba, who brought supplies to David when he left Jerusalem on his way to the passage of the Jordan, in acknowledgment of which David invited Mephibosheth to become one of the guests at his table (i.e. , a memlier of his court). Obviously this is due to an admirer of David, who would not have his hero accused of having ill-treated the son of Jonathan. We may at any rate assume, on the basis of this passage (2 S. 19:33), that the invitation or rather command which now stands at the end of 2 S. 9:7 should properly form part of the narrative of David s second interview with Mephibosheth. 2 Ziba, in short, probably took all the lands of Saul (cp 2 S. 19:30), and Mephibosheth was ordered to a disguised imprison ment at the court.

2 S. 17:27 is evidently based on a corrupt and misunderstood original, which may with high probability be restored thus, And it came to pass that Mephibosheth ben Jonathan [from Beth-jerahmeel, from Beth-gilgal, from Gibeah of Shalishah], 1 the Gilgalite, from Beth-gilgal. . . . In 1931 ff., njU3D <vsho, from Gibeah of Shalisha, has become ?n3 BARZILLAI, a purely imaginary name, which the writer must have derived from a corrupt form of 2 S. 17:27. It is certainly attractive this familiar story of Barzillai but it is neither more nor less than a romantic decoration based upon misunderstanding. The refer ence in 17 27 *o Machir, Ammiel, and Lo-debar apparently comes from 9 4 f. -QT nV. might be a corruption either of ly 1 ?} ga (Jabesh-gilead) or of ^jSj n 3 (Beth-gilgal) ; but underneath the corrupt words which precede we can detect THOnT rT3 (Beth- jerahme'el = Beth-gilgal). See, further, SAUL, 6.

In 2 S. 9:12 we hear of a son of Mephibosheth called Micha ; but the name and the genealogy in which it finds place (iCh. 83^ 9 41 ff.) are both suspicious (SAUL, 6). Both Micha and Chimham (2 S. 1937/0 may quite naturally be traced to Jerahme el.

T. K. C.

1 Wi. C,1 1 196.

2 That they are misplaced, is seen by Winckler (GY 2202, n. 3).


(Tip, 74; M6POB [BAL], increase ? but see below) is represented as Saul s elder daughter (i S. 14:49, m - A), who, though promised to David, was finally given to ADRIEL to wife (18 17 19). Her five sons were said to have fallen at the hands of the Gibeonites, as representatives of Saul's house, to remove the blood- guiltiness of the land (2 S. 218, where 'Michal' is generally taken as a scribe's error for Merab ). The whole of the Merab paragraph (1 S. 18:17-19), however, together with some neighbouring passages (parts of 212629/1) is wanting in LXX. Its genesis can not im probably be traced.

The name Merab may have grown out of a corrupt variant of the name of Saul's daughter, which elsewhere appears as Michal and probably also as Abihaii, but which was really Jerahme'elith (cp Mahalath). The names of the persons to whom Merab and Michal respectively are said to have been transferred are also probably corruptions of shortened forms of Jerahme el, or rather Adriel [Mahriel], son of Barzillai [citizen of Gibeah of Shalisha] the Meholathite [Jerahme elite], and Paltiel [Matriel], son of Laish [Shalishah], who was of Gallim [Beth-gilgal], are the same person - a member of a clan called (from its origin) Jerahme el.

All that the old tradition knew was that Saul's daughter married within her father's clan. See SAUL, i, LAISH, PALTI, MEHOLATHITE. Cp, however, H. P. Smith or Budde on the passages concerned.

T. K. C.


(H^P, on name, see below), head of the priestly b'ne Seraiah in the days of Joiakim, Jeshua s successor, Neh. 12:12 (/v\ApeA [B], MApAIA [K]. MAplA [A], AMAPIAC [L])-

As the text stands, the root of the name is mo, to withstand ; see NAMES, 35, 53. But Gray s suggestion (HPN 295, n. i) that Meraiah comes from AMARIAH (q.v.) is very plausible (cp -), and when we consider the number of post -exilic names arising (in our view) out of Jerahmeel, one of which is MER- AlOTH = Jerimoth, it is even probable. For Amariah is certainly Jerahmeelite ; cp Zeph. 1:1 (Cushi and Amariah near together ; cp CUSHI) i Ch. t>6yC (Zerahiah, Meraioth, Amariah, Ahitub 2 all probably from ethnic names). T. K. C.


(ninp; 34, 53 ; but see MERAIAH). i. A descendant of Aaron, and ancestor of Ahitub ; 1 Ch. 66752 [5:32-33, 6:37] 9:11, Ezra 7:3 {3} Neh. ll:11 (/v\Apei- . MApepo>9. /v\Apiu)9 [B] ; /v\Apico9 . MepAoo9, MApito9 [A]; MApeoo9- MAPAIG09, MepAia>9. MApico9 [L])- See GENE ALOGIES i. , 7 (iv. ).

2. In Neh. 12:15 Meraioth (Bfc<*A om., MApl6i)9 [tfc.a mg. inf.j_ M A.pi/v\a>9 [L]) seems to be a false reading for Meremoth. See MEREMOTH (3).


RV Merran (MCPPAN [BAQF]), Bar. 3:23. Probably a misreading for Medan = Midian. To look for Arabian names of similar sound is a profitless undertaking. The 'merchants of Midian and Teman' is a natural combination (so Hi. , Kneucker, Ball, J. T. Marshall).

1 A later insertion.

2 Probably a disguise cf riarn, Rehobothi. The Reho- bothites are not impossibly referred to occasionally in the Psalms. See PSALMS (ROOK).

3 4 Esd. 1 2, MAKIMOTH.


( -HP, MpAp[e]l [BNAF] ; in i Ch.6i 161929286, MApApei [B], in i Ch. 6 47 156 17 26 10 19, MeppApei [B]).

i. The smallest of the three divisions of Levites (Gen. 46 1 1 Ex. 619, etc., only in P and Ch. , see GERSHON, GENEALOGIES i., 7, KOHATH, LEVITES). The Merarites (nian, 6 /u,. ) are frequently mentioned in the priestly writings (cp Nu. 3:17, 4:29 78 i Ch. 6:1, 9:14, etc.); their cities are placed in Zebulun, Gad, and Reuben (Josh. 21:7, 21:34-40). The two sub-divisions bear the names MUSHI and MAHLI [qq.v.]. Both Mushi and Merari seem to be corruptions of Misri i.e., be longing to Musur or Musri (cp MIZKAIM, 2b), on the N. Arabian border whilst Mahli = Jerahmeeli (Che. ). Apparently the original seats of the LEVITES [</.v.~\ were in the Misrite or Jerahmeelite region (Che. ). See MOSES, 6.

2. The father of JUDITH [q.v.] (Judith 8:1, /lepapei ; 1C6, fiapapei [K]). From a comparison with Gen. 26:34 it was an old conjecture that Merari was a corruption of Beeri (the Hittite), cp Ball (Ju<i. ad loc.).

3. Family in Ezra s caravan (see EZRA i., 2, ii., 15 [i}d), Ezra 819 (viol Mepap[e]i [BAL])= i Esd. 848 CHANNUNEUS (viol Xapovvatov [BA]).


(DTHP pNH ; Pesh. connects with mD, 'to be bitter' ; BNA connect 71? ^"INH with preceding clause, and render the rest of 21 a rrixpcoc erriBHei en AYTHN [Aq. TTAPATTIKPAINON- T60N ANABH9I err AYTHN, O mg ] super terram dominantium ascende], Jer. 50:21-22. The vowel-points suggest the meaning double rebellion [so RV mg - ; AV mg- 'the rebels' ] (cp Cushanrishathaim), as if the name were a symbolic description of Babylonia, but since Pekod (in the parallel clause) is a geographical designation, 'Merathaim' must have been so too. Frd. Delitzsch (Par. 182), with Schrader s assent, explains m-r-t-m (the consonants of the text) from Ass. mat marrdtim, 'the sea-country' i.e. , S. Baby lonia ; cp Bit-Yakin, which is on the shore of the sea (marrati, i.e., the Persian Gulf), in Sargon's Khor- sabad inscr. 1:22 (A7?2s5 ; KA T& 423).

Cheyne, however, who regards Jer. 50 f. as (in its original form, traces of which still remain) directed against the Jerahmeelites or Edomites, who abetted the Babylonian invaders, and long continued to commit outrages on the Jews (see OBADIAH [BOOK]) reads thus : Go up against the land Jerahmeel, and against the inhabitants of Rehoboth, saith Yahwe, and do according to all that I have commanded thee. l


i. "IPID, soher ( v TTTD- eMTropey- C9Al), Gen. 23:16 [but for a revised text see KESITAH] 37:28 Ezek. 27:21, etc.; 6MTTOPOC (Is. 23 2 /, MeTABoAoc) , negotiator.

2. h^, rokel (\/ ?3">, cp VjT ; see SPIES), Ezek. 27:3, Neh. 3:31-32: etc.; ejixTropos, e/oLTropioi (in Neh. 831 f., po/Son-wAris i.e., poiroir. ptoTTOTr. not in UNA, fxerajSoAos [L] ; in Cant. 36 /iupei^os (i.e., perfumer ). See TRADE AND COMMERCE, and for Neh. 3 3i./, where c Vm is a mutilation of D ^NCnT (Che.), see NETHINIM and cp PERFUMER.

In Is. 23 n |J^3 is rendered in AV the merchant city (cp 3) ; but in RV Canaan, RVnig. the merchant people. On Canaan = Phoenicia, cp CANAAN, 2.

3. JJ{J3, kena ani, properly Canaanite, because the Phoe nicians were a trading people ; cp Ezek. 16 29 RV in the land of Canaan ; mg. unto the land of traffic (Job 40 30 [41 6] Prov. 3124). In Is. 23g EV trafficker, II Wl, merchant. In EV of NT merchant, merchantman, correspond to e/nn-opos, av- 0po>7ros >*-. (Rev. 18 3 1 1 23 Mt. 13 45).

In i K. 10 15 I! 2 Ch. !> 14 rjnnn t^ND t^h s rendered in AV Beside that he had of the merchantmen, and Beside that which chapmen [brought] ; but the merchants have no business here. Careful criticism, by revealing the corruption of the text, clears up the whole context. See SOLOMON.

1 3in comes from [nbm> a scribe s correction of the preceding llpfi Dinni a d nmriN a re both attempts of scribes to make sense of a miswritten jNDnT (cp p IPIN DJlj m Gen. 64).


AV MERCURIUS, Greek Hermes ), w <is the customary attendant of Jupiter (Zeus) when he appeared on earth (Ov. Fast. 6495, Metam. 8621), and is spoken of by lamblichus (de Myst. ^Eg . ) as 0eds 6 T&V \6ywv i)y(/j.<jn>. In Acts 14 12 it is said that the people of Lystra took Barnabas (the older man) for Zeus, and Paul for Hermes because he was the chief speaker (tircioTi avros fy 6 i)yoij/j.ei>os rov \6yov). Details regarding Hermes and his Roman counterpart can be found in many easily accessible works. It will suffice here to refer to what has been said under JUPITER, col. 2648, and to remark that Hermes is also the Greek equivalent of NEBO. See also BARNABAS, 3, and cp, on the sources, ACTS, 10.


(IVIS?, kapporeth ; lAACTHRlON ! propitiatorium], corresponding to Luther's Gnadenstuhl.

1. The problem.[edit]

'Mercy-seat' is, of course, not an exact translation of kapporeth and l\a<Tri]piov [hilasterion], nor does the context suggest it. The phrase would do better for throne of grace (6p6vos rfjs xapiros} in Heb. 4:16. Our first task, then, must be to try to ascertain what the much-discussed word kapporeth actually does mean (2-5) ; our next to make a similar endeavour as to the word IXaffrripiov, and to ascertain whether the idea underlying the kapporeth of the MT and that underlying the i\a<iTj)piov of the LXX are coincident ( 6 f. } ; our last to inquire what is the mean ing of the word in the locus classicus, Rom. 3:25 ( 8).

2. Use of kapporeth in OT.[edit]

In the OT kapporeth occurs only in P (Ex. 26:17-22, 26:34 [LXX otherwise] 30:6 [LXX om.], 31:7, 35:2, 37:6-9, 39:35 [LXX om.] 40:20, [LXX om ], Lev 16:2, 16:13-15, Nu 7 8 9 ) and in 1 Ch . 28 ii (" A ^tXao-Mos).

If in these passages we are content in the meanwhile to leave the word kapporeth untranslated and to treat it purely as an unknown quantity, we obtain the follow ing data towards a determination of the idea involved. In P the kapporeth denotes a concrete object (it is of gold and of definite dimensions) ; more precisely, it is a gold plate laid upon the ark of the covenant, rect angular in form, and in its measurements coinciding exactly with those of the ark. Upon this plate are fixed two cherubs of beaten gold, under the outspread wings of which Yahwe has his dwelling. On the great day of atonement the high priest sprinkles this gold plate with the blood of the animals sacrificed. 1

The inference drawn from the facts by many ancient 2 and modern scholars - that kapporeth means covering - was not unnatural. It was fallacious, nevertheless. If upon a bronze goblet we lay a disc that fits its upper rim, the word 'disc' does not therefore mean a 'cover ing' or 'lid', although in point of fact in this particular case the 'disc' actually is a lid. In like manner here, though the kapporeth actually does cover the ark, the name does not therefore necessarily mean a covering. There is this difference indeed between the two cases that whereas the words 'disc' and 'lid' have ety- mologically nothing in common, kapporeth is actually derived by the supporters of the inference just men tioned from ,y/-i2D, kaphar, to cover. Now, whilst the connection of kapporeth with the root kaphar is undeniable, it must not be overlooked that it is a nomen actoris derived from the Piel, and means literally 'she who wipes out', 3 'wipe out' in fact here having that pregnant sense of suhnen, expiare, which always char acterises the Piel. Since this feminine noun shows a natural tendency to become an abstract one we may well adopt Merx's conjecture that probably it was originally associated with some such word as ^3, so that our kapporeth will be an abbreviation for rnban ^3 and will mean 'instrument of cleansing', 'instrument of propitiation'.

The renderings of Pesh. (husaya, Suhnung), Vg. (propiti- atarium), and Arm. (in Ex. 25 17 \awouthiun, expiatio) come very near this meaning of kapporeth; that of the LXX will be considered later (see 8). Thus on etymological grounds the interpretation of 'covering' is to be rejected, although in point of fact the kapporeth actually did serve as a lid covering the ark. Whether the ark had a special covering of its own upon which the kapporeth rested, so that the kapporeth, as maintained by Dillmann and, among others, by Nowack (Arch. 2:60), is to be thought of as a kind of penthouse for the ark, cannot be made out ; we have no information. In any case the meaning of kapporeth in the OT is not covering, nor yet atoning covering, but, as we have seen, instrument of propitiation.

1 The question whether the law of Lev. 16 is composite or a unity need not be considered here. Cp Benzinger, ZA TW, 1889, pp. 65^; also LEVITICUS, 2, and ATONEMENT (DAY OF), i.

2 Sa adya, Rashi, Kimhi.

3 For these observations the present writer is indebted to the kindness of Prof. A. Merx.

3. Kaffarat in Arabian law.[edit]

In agreement with this is the important observation of Lagarde that an Arabic kaffarat, in daily use as a technical expression in legal procedure, corresponds formally and exactly to the Hebrew rnsf. 1

Lagarde begins (231 f.) by showing how the Arabic verb kafara, 'cover', is used : a cloud covers the sky, night covers by its darkness, the wind covers the traces of an encampment, the sower covers the seed, for which reason he is actually called kafir (he who covers up). Next, Lagarde (232 f.) explains wherein it is that the kaffarat of Arabian law consists. Whoso ever has deliberately left unfulfilled a nadr (vow) or promise, must make a kaffarat [ = rnS3]. The kaffarat, moreover, is obligatory on everyone who has engaged in certain proceedings of law, especially the taking of an oath ; the object of the kaffarat in this case being to make good any illegalities that may perchance have occurred in such proceedings. Further, it is obligatory upon everyone who has reproached his wife . . . who has unintentionally killed a man [one school of law says a Moslem ] or by any negligence on his part occasioned the death of a man, who has not fasted duly accord ing to rule, or who has failed to keep the fast of Ramadan. Some schools of law accept kaffarat also in expiation even of wilful manslaughter for which other schools . . . demand blood- revenge. The latter view is the only one really in consonance with the fundamental principles of Mohammedan law. The kaffarat required consists either in ... the emancipation of a Mohammedan slave, or in fasting, or in sadaka (6i<caioervn), Mt. 6:1 = eAeT)jaocruri), which can be exercised only towards really needy persons.

Now, in Sunnite law there are four schools : everything which is common to all four may safely be taken as an original and integral element in Mohammedan law. And kaffarat is common to them all (Lag. op. cit. 233).

Lagarde states that the kaffarat is also usual among the Arabs in everyday life. He quotes (236), besides an interesting passage from Lane's Mod. Egypt, on funeral rites, a story of Tartusi : a female slave had brought a dish of broth to table in too great a hurry, had let the dish fall, and scalded her master and his guests with its contents. Her master consoled her with the words : 'Thou art free : perhaps this may be to thee a kaffarat for thy fright'. See also Lagarde s Register u. Nachtrage, 69 1 ; but cp GGN, 1891, pp.

4. Relation between OT kapporeth and Arab. kaffarat.[edit]

That the OT kapporeth and the Arab. kaffarat are in some way connected with each other is more than probable. Lagarde 2 insists upon this. The two words he says (2 35f) coincide exactly; and as the Arabs have a for the Heb o, kaffarat cannot possibly be a loan from the Hebrew. The existence of this lautverschiebung makes it certain that the words are, each in its own place, original. The ideas in both go back to a common primitive Semitic legal origin : the conception of kappdreth is plainly a fundamental Semitic conception, though, of course, capable of being adopted by the authorities of an organised religion, like the early Judaism. 3

How Lagarde himself pictured to himself the connection between the OT kapporeth and the primitive Semitic legal idea referred to he has not set forth in any detail. He only says that he is led more and more to the conclusion that 01533 in the Pentateuch means the ark of the covenant in so far as atonement and the ark were connected, and his statement shows that he agrees with Merx in the theory already mentioned, that kap poreth is an abbreviation, presumably for some such expression as keit hakkatporeth. One is surprised, however, that Lagarde should consider the ark itself, not the gold plate upon it, to be the kapporeth, contrary to the express words of the Penta teuch.

The present writer will only venture to say that the Arabic usage described by Lagarde, if accepted as illustrative of the primitive Semitic conception, seems to him to make for the explanation given above in 2. Kapporeth, like kaffarat, means propitiation ; it is used, however, in the OT with reference to the thing which subserves the purpose of propitiation. Similar abbreviations (Lagarde compares nsx) are not unfre- quent in technical expressions connected with worship, as, for example, in the popular designation of feast days.

1 Lag. Ubers. 237. See, however, Kon., Lehrgeb. la (1895), 201.

2 Uebers. 235.

3 See Lagarde, GGN, 1891, pp. 136, and cp Uebers. 230.


5. History of the OT kapporeth-worship.[edit]

Thus the word kaffarat - kapporeth has been very tenacious of its meaning during its age-long history. The meaning of propitiation, which came down from primitive Semitism, it continued to retain in the OT and in the Koran, and still possesses among modern Jews 1 and Arabs. In the case of the Jews this is all the more noteworthy because the passages in their law, which continually reminded them of a kapporeth, had from an early date come to have only theoretical validity. Whether the kapporeth- worship associated with the ark of the covenant had ever been actually practised may be left an open ques tion here. What is certain, in any case, is that in the time of Jesus and the apostles the temple in Jerusalem no longer possessed the ark, 2 and, therefore, the kapporeth- worship connected therewith. As regards the offering of the high priest on the great day of atonement 3 in Herod s temple we have two notices : that of Josephus (Ant. iii. 10:3) and that of the Mishna ( Yoma}. The high priest sprinkled the blood of the sin- offering, according to Josephus, towards the roof and floor of the holy of holies ; according to Yoma, towards that spot in the holy of holies, marked by a stone, where the ark of the covenant ought to have stood. This stone was called eben sathya or iben sethiyya (ATONEMENT, DAY OF, 7). After the destruction of Herod's temple, even this shadowy worship ceased, and the kapporeth- cultus connected with the ark by the law became no more than a pious memory. The idea of kapporeth, however, was too natural to pass away.

1 We cannot here investigate the history of the current Ger man colloquialism, kappores gehen, 'to go kappores' i.e., 'to be destroyed'. The word kappores used in the language of modern Jewish worship is the old word kapporeth and means properly propitiation.

2 See ARK, 4 ; also Winer, Bill. RWB(*}, s.v. Bundeslade. 1

3 Cp Winer ( 3 ), s.v. Versohnungstag ; also ATONEMENT, DAY OF.

4 Fayfim Towns and their Papyri (Egypt Exploration Fund), 1900, p. 313.

6. lAacrrnpioro and lAacrrnpiov in Greek.[edit]

[hilasterios and hilasterion]

Passing to the Greek form, we have first to establish its meaning in Greek generally.

(a) The adjective tXaoriJ/Mos, etymologically considered, has the meaning of 'propitiatory', 'serving for propitiation'. Apart, however, from the LXX and Christian literature we know of only two ancient passages which certainly exemplify the use of this adjective. Among the Faiyum MSS, discovered by Grenfell and Hunt, 4 is a fragment (No. 337) of a philosophical work, by an unknown author, concerning the gods. It is unfortunately much mutilated ; still we are able to make out an expression which has great interest for our present inquiry (1:3-5) : rots 0eo?s eiXao-Tr;- [pi o]i>$ (sic) 6v<rlas cttw[0^ PJirej tTrtrfXeio-dai. The actual fragment dates from the second century A. D. ; but the text itself may of course be older.

Here we find iAao-Trjpios as an adjective (of two terminations) qualifying flvert a : iAacm;pto 6v<ria = propitiatory sacrifice. No one can imagine here that the conception of sacrifice is already latent in the word iAao-njpios : iAacrTrjpios by itself means simply 'propitiatory', the idea of sacrifice is given by 6v<ria.

The other passage is 4 Macc. 17:22, which need not here be quoted. Here the reference is to the Maccabaean martyrs.

LXX{N [aleph]} has (Sia) TOV iAao-njpi ov TOV Savarov, thus taking iAa<r- njpt ov as a substantive ; but even if we suppose this to have been the original reading (which does not seem likely) the existence of the adjective is proved for the philologist by the other MSS

Of Christian date we have been able to discover with the aid of the Thesaurus Gracce Lingua no more than a single example : Niceph. Antioch. Vita Symeon. Stylit. in Ada Sanctorum Mali, v. 335 17 : x e P as iKfTTjpiovs, fi /3oi/Xet 5 iXaffrrjpiovs, fKTflvas 0ey, where again IXacrrripios means propitiatory.

(b) Adjectives in -ripios are, as we know, often made into substantives, 2 e.g., Ov^ar-qpiov, <j>v\a.KT-f)piov, and many others ; in inscriptions x a P -< f "nP L <> v an d evxapi- ffrripiov are of frequent occurrence, TO iXaffrripiov can mean nothing else than that which propitiates, the propitiating thing. What the particular thing is must be determined in each case by the context. It is wholly arbitrary to assert that iXacmripiov means propitiatory sacrifice. A sacrifice, if it was propitiatory in its in tention, might once and again indeed be designated as a IXao-rripiov ; but the word itself does not on that account forthwith require the special meaning pro pitiatory sacrifice ; it still can be used equally well of any other thing connected with propitiation. Of this last various examples can be adduced, whilst, strange to say, no instance of iXaarripiov being used in the sense of propitiatory sacrifice has as yet been discovered. 3 Of our examples, which are all drawn from the early imperial period, two are found in recently discovered inscriptions, one in a pagan author, and two in Jewish texts.

Upon a statue, or the base of a statue - at all events upon a votive gift set up to the gods by the people of Cos for the welfare of Augustus, 'son of God', - stands the following inscription : 4

6 3a/xos vwtp TO.S AvroKparopos
Oeov vlov 2e3a(TToO

The word is used in a similar way in another inscrip tion of Cos (no. 347), 5 which certainly belongs to the imperial period, though it cannot be more precisely dated. It is found upon the fragment of a column :

[6 8a./jios 6 AXevriwv]
[ . v . 2e]|8a- ^
<r[r] Au ^.{r^ar nf ZXacr-
TOS Tatov N
avov Mocr Tiov
fTjps pos

1 To the above two passages we should have to add Jos. Ant. xvi. 1:1 : 7repi 0o(3os 6 auros erjei Kal TOV &eov<; tAacmjpioi juiTJju.a Aeu/cijs jrerpas CTTI TU> <TTOJUI U> Ka.Tf<Ttcfva.<raTo, if here tAa<rr) pioi and fj.ffifj.a are to be taken together ; but it is more than probable that iAao-njpioi is used as a substantive and predicatively ; he set up as a l\aa"njpiov TOV 5e ov5 a jiuirjjLia Aeu/cTjs TreVpa? the view communicated to the present writer by H. Brede (cp Deiss- mann, Bibehtiid. 127, n. 2). The phrase iAa<mjpiop TOV 6Vovs is elliptical : as propitiation for his crime that was filling him with fear.

2 Winer, Gram.C!) 91 ; Winer-Schmiedel, 16 26, 134.

3 The reference to TheophanesContinuatus in Winer (7), 91, and Winer-Schmiedel, 134, is a mistake. See below, n. 13, col. 3031.

4 W. R. Paton and E. L. Hicks, The Inscriptions o/ Cos, 1891, no. 81 (p. 126), cp Deissmann, Bibelstud. 128. Paton and Hicks, 225/1, cp Deissmann, 128. We learn by private communication from Dr. R. Herzog of Tubingen that this inscription has since, unfortunately, disappeared. It is a happy circumstance that it had already been published by the English editors.

We find exactly the same use of the word in Dio Chrysostom {Or. 11:355 [Reiske]) : KaraAei i^eii yap ai/Tovs avd8r]fi.Oi KaAAioroi Kal fj.eyi<TTOv rf) \6-r)va KO.L eTnypatfjui i\a.<mipi.ov Amatol Tf} IAia5i. Here also may be adduced the passage of Josephus already given under (a); see n. i. More interesting still than the passage just referred to is the fact that Symmachus 1 in his translation of Gen. 6:16 [15] twice designates Noah's ark as i\aa-njpiov [hilasterion], plainly because he regarded it as a means of pro pitiation ; whosoever found refuge in the ark, to him God showed his mercy.

(c) The examples hitherto adduced all give the general sense of means of propitiation, propitiatory thing, the context in each case showing the special meaning (never, however, that of propitiatory sacri fice ). Several of a later date have now to be added. The passage from Nonnus, indeed (Dionysiaca, 18517 : 4th-5th cent. A. D. ), cited by Cremer (I 8 , 474), is uncer tain ; the current reading would appear to be iKacTTrj/na Vopyous, which l- alkcnburg altered into IXaffTr/pia Topyovs and Cunreus into iepa pevfiara Yopyovs. 2 Even should the conjecture iXacrTTjpia be right, the passage still remains unintelligible ; according to the context the IXaffTripia Yopyovs must mean a district of country. 3

Hesychius, the lexicographer, explains i\a.ffT-qpiov as Ka.6a.pffi.ov, 6vffia.ffT-f)piov, i.e., he gives a synonym ( that which purifies and that which propitiates are nearly related ideas) and adds a special meaning which, of course, is possible only in a particular context, 4 that of altar, which Cyril, the lexicographer cited by Schleusner, 5 explains quite rightly when he says : iXa- ffrripiov dvffiaffTripiof, ev $ irpoff<pfpfi (wpofffaperai?) irf.pl a.fj.apTitiji>.

Menander the historian (6th-7th cent. A.D. ) in Excerpt. Hist. 352i2/l 6 alludes to TOI> fjLovaarrjpioi O!KOV rbv \ey6/j.ei>ov ^efiavdv and afterwards (16) designates this monastery as a iXatTTT/jpiov (ret^ 6 re Ka.Trj<r(pa\t.<r- p.tvui> TO iXaffTr/ptov) a designation which might on occasion be quite appropriate. 7

From Du Cange 8 we learn that Sabas 9 in the Typlcum (Venice ed. ), chaps. 1 and 5, gives the name of i\a.ffT-f]piov to the place of the altar, the choir (bema, cancellis inc/usum) ; e.g. (chap. 5), Ov/jLiq. Tr\v ayiav rpdirefav ffTavpofid&s clxra^rws KCU TO IXaffTr/piov (J.TTO.V.

In Joseph Genesios (loth cent. A.D.) 1032i 10 a monastery is called iXaffTrjpiov, just as in Menander : iij 5e Trapea-TTjKfL TOLS rov IXaffT-rjpiov irpoOvpois. n

Theophanes Continuatus (roth cent. A.D.) in two places (3262iy. 452i4) 12 calls a church IXaffT^pLOV.**

How this use of the word is to be explained can be well seen in a passage of Johannes Kameniates (loth cent. A. D. ), who says of sumptuous ecclesiastical build ings ( 502 \of. ) u that they are as it were propitiatory gifts dedicated by the community to the deity (Sxrirep Tiva. Koiva. wpbs rb dflov IXaffTr/pLa). Here iXaffTrjpiov has its old meaning propitiatory thing, more particu larly propitiatory gift. If it was possible with Johannes Kameniates to liken a church to a IXacrrripiov [hilasterion], it was also possible even to call a church or a cloister by that name, as Theophanes Continuatus, Joseph Genesios, and Menander actually do.

(d) From what has been said we see how baseless is the assertion that to the word iXavrripiov it is necessary to supply 0vfj.a. Hitherto not a single passage has been adduced where this is the case, 1 and in all the places where iXaffrripiov is read with certainty, some other word than #C/ua is demanded as a supplement. TO IXaffTrtpiov signifies the propitiatory thing, the means of propitiation. What the propitiatory thing that is actually intended may be has to be determined in each case by the context.

1 Field, Hex., 1875, 1 23 /.

2 See Nonni Panopolitte Dionysiacorum libri XLVIII., em. F. Graefe, 1 (1819) p. 300. Kochly in his edition (Leipsic, 1857) conjectures eui cumjptoc OpyoO, and seeks to defend this reading, p. lixyC

3 Cremer ( 8 ), 474, explains propitiatory gift, which does not remove the difficulty.

4 He is doubtless thinking of Ezek. 43 14 17 20 <S ; cp below, 7 a, end.

5 Ncn>. Thes. . . . in LXX. . . . interpreles Veteris Testa- tnenti, 3, Leipsic, 1820, p. 109.

6 Ed. Niebuhr (Bonn).

7 CremerW, 474, cites the passage, but plainly had not read it.

8 Glossariiim ad scriptorcs medice et infinite Griecitatis, I(i688) 513.

9 St. Sabas (or Sabbas) died 531 A.D. Whether the Typicum that bears his name be really his is doubtful. Cp Krumbacher, Gesch. d. Byz. Lit.W, 141.

10 As to this, cp Ezek. 43 14 17 20 (5, and below, 7 a, end.

11 Ed. Lachmann (Bonn). The Thesaurus cites p. 49 D ac cording to the Venice Ed.

I 2 Ed. Bekker(Bonn).

13 According to Winer! 7 ) 91, and Winer-Schmiedel, 134, lAour- TTJpiov should here be taken in the sense of propitiatoiy sacrifice ; but this does not suit. The index of the Bonn edition gives evKTrjpioi/ as the meaning ; but this is not sufficiently exact.

14 Ed. Bekker (Bonn). Leo Allatius in his edition (Cologne, 1 653* has efiAao-njpia for iAa<mjpia. The word e fiAacmjpioi is met with also in the Scholiast to Apollonius of Rhodes, 2485^7 (ap. Rhod. Argonaittica, rec. R. Fr. Ph. Brunck, 2, 1813, p. 165) in interpreting Aux^rji a iepa, of which the scholiast says TOUTeoriK efiAaan/pia (cac. caTa7rav<rnjpia TTJS opyjjs. In this connection it is offerings that are so designated.

7. lAacrrnpioro and lAacrrnpiov in LXX, Philo, and Heb. 9:5.[edit]

(a) The LXX uses in the first instance the adjective (Ex. 25;16 [17]) : /col Trotijtreis iXaffTriptov fwiBffj.a, 2 \pvfflov KO.0a.pov. Here iXaffTr)pion tiridffjLO. renders kapporeth. The present writer formerly held J kapporeth to mean 'covering', and accordingly took liriana as the translation of the word kapporeth and the whole expression iXaffTrjptov eiriOfna [hilasterion epithema], as rendering the idea kapporeth. After what has been said above (2) it will be seen that he is no longer of this view. It seems rather that the LXX took up the idea of kapporeth quite rightly, and saw the expression to be elliptical ; only, in the first passage where the word occurred, they filled up the ellipsis, giving iXacmjptcu (TriffffMo, for \k e ll hak-~\kapporeth , because, in point of fact, the object to which the word was applied was a sort of plate which in some way or other served as a lid to the ark. In all subsequent passages the ellipsis of the original is adhered to ; LXX regularly has iXaaTr)piov for kapporeth.* If, therefore, as has been shown above, kapporeth ( 2+ ) and iXacrT-ripiov ( 7) both mean 'pro pitiatory thing', LXX has rendered the meaning of its original quite correctly. 5 It is, unfortunately, by no means superfluous once more to insist that, accordingly iXa.ffTripi.oi> in LXX does not mean the 'lid of the ark'. That, on the contrary, the meaning 'propitiatory thing' was alone present to the minds of the translators is shown by the fact, almost invariably overlooked in the theological commentaries, that Ezek. 43 14 17 20 ( renders also the mn, , the ledge (RV 'settle' ) of the altar, by IXaffT-ripiov. This also had to be sprinkled with the blood of the sin-offering, and therefore had something to do with propitiation. 6

(b) Philo also shares the view of LXX as to IXaffrripiov. In all the places where he alludes to or quotes the OT kapporeth-passages, IXcum^xoK can only be translated 'propitiatory thing'.

Thus: De Tit. llfos. 38 (Mang. 150) T/ 6c a/3<oTbs . . . fa tTri6efj.a. axravel Troika TO Aeyo/u.ei Oi ec iepais /Si^Aois iAa<7T7)pto ; ibid., a little lower down, TO 6e eiriOena TO 7rpo<ravopei/o/if 0i iAao-nj p 10 " I D e P r of J< g- J 9 (M- 561) ... TO eiriOffia. TTJS KifiiaTov, <caAfi 6e avTO iAao-rr)pio ; De cherub. 8 (M. 143) KO.I yap afTiTrpoo wTra ^KJUTIV eicat I euoi ra Trpb? TO iAao-T77ptoi> ere pot? (allusion to Ex. 25 20 [21] (5). In every case it is only the connection that shows the propitiatory thing associated with the ark to be intended.

(c) The same holds good of Heb. 9:5, vwepavw dt avrrjs x f P l P f - v S6^i)s KaraffKid^ovra rb iXacrTr)ptoi>, where it is not the word IXaffr^piov but the whole con nection that recalls the ark.

(d) We are now in a position to form an opinion regarding Ritschl's extraordinary assertion 1 that everywhere both in the OT and in the NT the word i\a.o"rripioi> means that remark able piece of furniture over the ark of the covenant in the holy of holies. The proposition must in point of fact be so altered as to run : iAatrnjpioi invariably means 'propitiatory thing' ; what the thing is in each individual case whether the structure above the ark of the covenant, or the ledge of the altar (or the ark of Noah, or a votive offering, or a church, or a cloister, or the like) - must always be determined by the context. If further Ritschl goes on 2 to draw a hard and fast line between Greek usage and that of LXX and NT, this is not in accordance with sound philological method, but is merely the arbitrariness of dogma.

1 The only instance that could be mentioned would be the ef lAcum/pioy of the Scholiast to Apollonius of Rhodes mentioned in the preceding note; but here, too, the meaning propitiatory sacrifice lies not in the word itself, but in the connection.

2 eWflejia is wanting in Cod. 58 only ; in Codd. 19, 30, etc., it stands before iAoumjpioi . See further, Deissmann, Bibclstud. 122, n. i.

3 Bibelstud. 122. The views there stated, as also in the English translation (Edin., 1901), are to be modified in the sense of the present article.

4 Only in iCh.28n is house of the kapporeth rendered 6 OIKOS ToO fiAao>i.ov, where rov efiAao-/uiov cannot be taken as essentially different from ToO iAaoTTjpi ov. In Ex. 21)34, where MT has kapp rt t/t, (P has T<i KaTa7reTao-/aaTt, showing that it read pa r keth ; in Am. i again, (5 read kapporeth for kaphtor and rendered iAaoTryptoc. See further, Deissmann, Bibelstud. 124.

8 The other versions that rest on the LXX (cp 2) also hit the right sense.

6 It is here perhaps that we should look for the explanation of the application of the word lAao-njpioi bysHesychius, Cyril, and Sabas referred to above ( 6c).

8. IXao-rfoiov in Rom 3:25.[edit]

Our scientific interest in the word iXa<TTr)pioi> and our whole investigation in the course of the foregoing sections find their ultimate importance in the light they shed on the celebrated locus classicus, Rom. 3:25 : whom God set forth (irpo^Oero) a lXa.crT-qpi.ov through faith in (dia iriffTfus tv) his blood.

(a) One possibility suggests itself, that of taking IXacrTripLov as accusative of IXaarr/pio^ : whom God hath set forth as a propitiating one. The more obvious course, however, is to take it as a neuter ; the adjective is but rare, the neuter substantive is of frequent occur rence. In either case the meaning is essentially the same.

(b) That Paul is here using the neuter is, according to the statistics of the word, the more probable supposi tion. This being assumed, three questions have to be carefully distinguished in the exegesis of the passage :

  • (a) What is the meaning of the word IXaffrripiov as such ;
  • (b) in what connection is it elsewhere employed ;
  • (c) has it in its present context any recognisable special meaning, or has it not ?

Many interpreters have mixed up all three questions, have ignored the first altogether, or have overlooked the multitude of various answers which are possible in the case of the second.

(c) The answers to ba and bb respectively will be found in 6 and 7.

  • (a) iXa<rrr)piov, wherever it occurs, always and invariably means that which propitiates, the means of propitiation, the propitiating thing.
  • (b) Any object whatever, as long as a propitiatory significance is attached to it, can be designated as a iXacrrripiov.

The following instances are met with in ancient texts :

  • 1. Votive offerings to deities or to the deity are most frequently of all so designated (Cos inscriptions, Josephus, Dio Chrysostom, Johannes Kameniates).
  • 2. The golden plate above the ark, on which the blood of sacrificial animals was sprinkled, prescribed by the law for the worship of the temple is called i\a<TTripiov eiridf/j.a, or for brevity's sake iAao-njpioc (the LXX and quotations from or references to it in Philo and the Epistle to the Hebrews).
  • 3. The ledge of the altar (35).
  • 4. The place of the altar (Sabas).
  • 5. The altar (Hesychius, Cyril).
  • 6. Noah's ark (Symmachus).
  • 7. A monastery (Menander, Joseph Genesios).
  • 8. A church (Theophanes Continuatus).

All these can receive the name iAa<mjpio>>.

That a sacrifice should be called IXacrT^piov is not in itself impossible ; but we have not as yet been able to discover any actual instance, although in one solitary case we meet with e^Xaa-rripiov in that sense (Scholiast to Apollonius of Rhodes). Thus we meet with a great variety of special applications of the word IXaff- rripiov ; but the variations are not so much usual as occasional in their character. 3 It is therefore very unwise to come to the text in the Epistle to the Romans with any dogma in one s mind as to the meaning of the word, such as that IXaar-qpiov means the propitiatory covering on the ark, or that it means a propitiatory sacrifice. The one proposition we can safely bring with us to the interpretation of the passage in question is that stated above under a and anew rein forced by the examples enumerated under /3 : iXacrrriptov signifies propitiatory thing, means of propitiation.

1 Rcchtfertigung u. Versohnung, 2(3), 168.

2 Ibid. 170.

  • On the distinction see ELEMENTS, i.

c. As for the nature of the means of propitiation referred to in the text, where it is said that God has openly set forth (irpoeBero) the Lord Jesus Christ as a IXaffTTipLov , or as to whether perhaps Paul may here have attached no special meaning at all to the word, we need not turn for help to any alleged biblical use of the word, but must look solely to the context itself.

(d) At the outset, of the explanations that have some times been given we may at once set aside two : (i) mercy seat (see above, i ), and (2) propitiatory covering of the ark.

The connection does not offer a single point for this assump tion to lay hold of. Apart from the absence of the article, the peculiar stiffness and inappropriateness of the figure suggested J is against it. Were the cross so designated the image could, at all events, be understood ; used of a person it is both inelegant and unintelligible ; * moreover that Christ, the end of the law Christ of whom Paul has been saying immediately before that he is the revealer of a righteousness of God apart from the law (\<ap\s 1/oju.ou 6icaiocrv n7 fftoii) should in the next breath be de scribed as the covering of the ark of the covenant, would furnish an image as un-Pauline in its character as it could possibly be. 3 It is further to be observed that Ritschl with his interpretation of the expression as meaning the utensil above the ark is inconsistent with himself. Whilst affirming in the first instance 4 that IXaffrripioi here has precisely that meaning of the word, and that meaning alone (to wit, utensil above the ark ), he afterwards 5 says that IXaffrriptov without the article has of course the force of a general conception. It denotes, not the individual material thing so designated in the LXX, as such, but the ideal purpose which the Israelite connected with the conception of that thing. This practically deprives Ritschl s own interpretation of all its force ; for the whole present question turns upon the utensil.

(e) The interpretation propitiatory sacrifice is not to be set aside summarily. Although we have no other instances of the employment of the word in that sense, such a use might yet be discovered in some particular connection, and in the present instance it is conceivable ; where blood is spoken of, a sacrifice can also be spoken of. The final determination, however, can only be reached after a thorough examination of the entire context.

(f) Equally possible is the interpretation propitiatory gift, which elsewhere is met with most frequently. It suits the connection admirably : God has openly set forth the crucified Christ in his blood before the eyes of the world, to the Jews a stumbling-block, to the Gentiles foolishness, to us by faith a iXacrripiov. The crucified Christ is the votive gift set up by God himself for propitiation of sins. In other cases it is human hands that set up a lifeless image of the deity as a pro pitiation for guilt ; here it is God himself who has set up the propitiatory monument. 8

(g) In both of the foregoing special interpretations which have been put forward as possible, it has hitherto been assumed that in his blood (ev rip avrou aifj.a.Ti) has reference to the actual blood of Christ shed at Golgotha. If this assumption were absolutely secure, we should have to make our choice between one or other interpre tation. Secure, however, it certainly is not. Once before we find Paul speaking of 'redemption' (aTroXvTpuffis), not as of a past fact concluded once for all, but as of a present condition subsisting in Christ Jesus (ei> tcTTCjj Itjffov) - i.e. , in the communion and fellowship of the exalted spiritual ( pneumatic ) Christ. 7 Thus the apostle is acquainted with a conception of the blood of Christ wholly different from that of the physical blood shed at Golgotha. It is not the physical but the spiritual blood l of the exalted Christ that the believer drinks in the eucharist as he also partakes of the spiritual body of Christ. Whoso eats of that bread and drinks of that cup enters into a communion of body and blood with the spiritual Christ (i Cor. 10:16). It is in this sense also that Paul, as is shown by comparing i Cor. 10:16, takes the word of Jesus in i Cor. 11:25 : this cup (iror-fipiov) is the new covenant (diadtficr]) in my blood ; he thinks of the spiritual blood of the exalted Saviour, in the same manner as Jn. 6:53-56 (cp also i Jn. 1:7 and 568) speaks of a drinking of the blood and an eating of the 'flesh' of Christ. With Paul, therefore, in the blood of Christ (i> rf ai/j-ari. X/xcrroD) can mean in blood -fellowship with the exalted spiritual Christ (cp also Xpicrrip ffvvfffTavpw/jLai, Gal. 2:20 and other similar terms of expression).

1 The covering would be sprinkled with its own blood.

2 The case is quite different with the figure in i Cor. 67: for (/cat yap) our passover (Trao-^a) also hath been sacrificed (ervdi)) [even] Christ.

3 Deissmann, Bibelstud. 126.

4 RecAtfertigwHfZfi), ids.

5 Ibid. 171.

6 Cp Deissmann, Bibelstud. i2af.

7 Cp Deissmann, D ; e NTliche Formel in Christo Jesu untcrsiiclit, Marburg, 1892.

It cannot be disputed that this spiritual interpretation of the formula 'in his blood' (tt> ry avrov ai /xcm) in Rom. 3:25, admirably suits the entire context. 2 Re demption is continuously at work 'in' Christ and faith comes to know, by experience of the blood-fellowship with Christ, that Christ has been sent into the world by God as an enduring i\affTr)pioi>. On this interpretation Paul would here be attesting precisely the same experi ences as are recorded, the one by himself, with respect to the exalted Christ, in i Cor. 1:30, and the other by the author of i Jn. 22 in the words 'and he' (avrfa - namely, the Christ who is 'with the Father', the exalted spiritual Lord) is the 'propitiation for our sins' (I\a(T/u6s (<TTU> n-fpl TUV a/napriuv ijfj.wi ). On this interpretation of 'in his blood' the view that IXaffT^piov here represents a propitiatory sacrifice becomes less probable than that it has the meaning - so abundantly attested for the imperial period - of 'propitiatory gift'.

(h) Is it necessary, however, to seek for any special meaning at all ? The connection does not demand it ; the general sense 'means of propitiation' is quite suffi cient. Thus in the end the simplest explanation gives us substantially the same meaning as we should have if we took i\affTr)pioi> as accusative masculine : Christ, the exalted spiritual Lord, in whom the believer lives, moves, and has its being, is, as faith in blood-communion with him proves him to be, given to us by God as our ever-present propitiator, our continual propitiation."

That, according to this view, the expression righteous ness of God (SiKaioffvvr) 6eov) in all four places (Rom. 3:21-22, 3:25-26) denotes, not the attribute of God, but the quality of the justified believer in Christ, cannot be shown at length in this place, but ought at least to be indicated.

9. Literature.[edit]

Besides the commentaries, dictionaries, and text books of NT theology, see especially P. de Lagarde, Uebersicht (1889), and Register it. Nacktriige (to the Uebersicht, in Abhh. d. Kgl. Ges. d. \y. zu. Gott. 37(1891)69 ; Lagarde, Thevenot s Caffarre in GGN, 1891, pp. 135^ ; G. Adolf Deissmann, BiMstudien, 1895, pp. i-ziff.; ETpp. 124^ (Edin. 1901); A. Ritschl, Die christl. Lfhre v.d. Rechtfertigting u. I crsohnung, 2P), 1889, pp. 168^; ET by Mackintosh and Macaulay, 1900 : Jas. Monson, Crit. Exf>os. of Rom. HI. 281-303 (not seen by present writer); Cremer, Bibl.-theol. Worterb.\*), 1895, pp. 474^ G. A. D.

1 Cp the expression nvfy^aTiKov irofia. (i Cor. 104), which also indirectly (TO avro) relates to the participation in this cup.

- In Rom. 5s/. and Eph. 2 13 also the formula gives a better sense on the pneumatic interpretation.


O~J?D), one of the sons of Ezrah ( C P EZER, i. ) in the genealogy of Judah (r Ch. 4 17, TTUip&A [B], Moop&A [A]; B&pAA [L] ; 4i8f, NoopooHA [B], MtopH^ [A], M&pco [L]). On Mered s name and on his wives names, see BITHIAH, where TO (Mered) is traced to an original niDT (Jarmuth) ; for another cor ruption of this word, see MAROTH. Of course the later editor and his readers explained the corrupt TO as 'rebellion' (cp Josh. 22:22); similarly 'Nimrod' was doubtless supposed to be derived from ^/TO, 'to rebel' (see NIMROD). If, however, we think that we can trust the correctness of MT, and regard 'Mered' as a clan-name, we may not unplausibly explain '(heroic) resistance' (see NAMES, 67) ; or if we view it as a place-name, we may compare the Ar. marda, which is connected with several places by Yakut (4:492-493), and means a place devoid of vegetation.

If Mered is really a corruption of Jarmuth, we can well understand the triple account given of the so-called Mered's family, and that in two of the accounts the important place Eshtemoa, and in the third the not less well-known places Gedor, Soco, and Zanoah, have their connection traced to him.

T. K. C.


(monp ; M&p[e]iMco9 [L] ; no doubt of ethnic affinities Jeroham = Jerahmeel [Che. ] ; cp JERIMOTH).

i. B. Uriah, a priest, temp. Ezra (see EZRA i., 8 2; ii., 15 [i] if), Ezra 8 33 Otepn<o0 [B], fiao^taB [Avid.])= , Esd. 862, EV MARMOTH (fi.apij.iaSi [B], -^0.81. [A]) ; in list of wall-builders (see NEHEMIAH, if. ; EZRA ii., 16 [i], i$d), Neh. 84 (j>a/j.u>9 [BNA]); 821 Otepa/uuiO [BNA]) ; signatory to the covenant (see EZRA i., 7), 10s[6] (anepa.fi.ias [B], -6 [K], ^epa^u>9 [A], fJ.tpi.fJi.

2. B. Bani, a layman, in list of those with foreign wives (see EZRA i., 5, end), Ezral036 (ifpa^wfl [BN], fj.apeij.ia6 [A]) = I Esd. 934, EV Carabasion (Kapaf3a<r[e]iiav (HA], L om.).

3. A priest in Zerubbabel s band (see EZRA ii., 6/0, Neh. 12 3 ([BN*A om., fnapifj.^ [Nc.a.mg.]). This name should prob ably be read for MERAIOTH in Neh. 12 15 also.

4. In i Esd. 82 MF.RK.MOTH, RV MEMEKOTH (fiapepiaO [A], B om., fi.apai.iat) [L]) seems to represent MERAIOTH (i).


(D Tp), in Esth. 1:14 (BNAUX/J O m. ), one of the seven princes at the court of Ahasuerus. The letters of the name are also the three first letters of MARSENA (<j.v.). See also ADMATHA.


(nan*?), Ex. 17:7; and Waters of Meribab. ( D *D)I Dt. 3;38, etc. See MASSAH AND MERIBAH, 2, and KADESH.


(7l?3 3 ~Wp), the name given to Jonathan's son in a genealogy of BENJAMIN (q.v. , 9, ii. /3), i Ch. 834 (/v\epiB&&lt;\A [B]. Med^piB. 1 [A], A\e/v\chiB-" [L]) = 94o (/v\&peiB&&A [BN], MApeiB&A [N once], MexpiBA&A 3 [A], L as above). In the last mentioned passage the name appears as Vjnnp, Meribaal. To produce a clear etymology this was probably altered into

  • ?ya 3 1S, Merib-baal i.e. , 'Baal contends' (NAMES,

42; cp JERUBBAAL). This form of the name is no doubt possible, but scarcely probable (see MEHETABEL). Meribaal is more difficult to explain. Some critics (e.g. , St., Ki. , Gray, HPN 200, n. 3) explain, 'man, or hero, of Baal', a view which may plausibly be taken to be confirmed by Ishbaal and Amariah. 4 The fre quency, however, with which corrupt forms of Jerah- me'el (the true name, as is elsewhere maintained, of Saul's clan ; see SAUL, i) present themselves among the names assigned to Saul's relatives is a cogent ground for supposing that Meribaal is really a corruption of Jerahme'el, through the assumed intermediate form Mahriel. Saul's daughter is only known to tradition by a name which is elsewhere (MICHAL) explained as a popular corruption of Jerahme'el[ith]. We can well understand, therefore, that both a son and a grandson of Saul may have been known to tradition by a similar name.

Cp LXX{A}s reading in 1 Ch. 9:40( 3 ), and note that Jerahme'el probably lies hidden under MALCHISHUA (q.v.), the name given in MT to one of the sons of Saul, also that MEPHIBOSHETH (q.v.) may plausibly be taken to favour the above explanation.

T. K. C.

1 Conflate of nc<f>if}aa\ and

2 Note the euphonic repetition of ;x.

3 fiexpi/SaaA may be expanded from Sn"13C (* > VxcrnO-

  • Cp Nold. ffZAM/6314 n. 2. Ishbaal is treated elsewhere

(ISHBAAL). As to Amariah, it is significant that the same genealogy contains the name 'Cushi' - i.e., a native of the N Arabian Cush (see CUSHI, 3). AMARIAH (q.r.) is nodoubt one of a group of distortions of Jerahmeel ending in -iah (cp MAL- CHIJAH, REPHAIAH). This is important for the origin of the prophet ZEPHANIAH (g.v.).


(Bnjrn nnD), Ezek. 47:19 RV. See KADESH, MASSAH AND MEKIBAH, 2.


(^TV?), the Hebraised form of Maruduk or Marduk, the patron deity of Babylon (BABYLONIA, 26), and under the later empire, together with Nebo, chief deity of the Babylonians ; also called BEL (q.v.) or BEL-MERODACH (Jer. 502, M&iooA&K [B], MeooAAX [KAQ]). On his famous temple E-sagila, see BABYLON, 5.

Nebuchadrezzar was devoted to him ; among his many ex pressions of homage he even styles Marduk ilu baniya 'god my begetter'. Merodach (Marduk) enters into the composition of many Babylonian names ; see esp. MERODACH-BALADAN, EVIL-MERODACH, and MORUECAI (cp A ATP), 175 f. 422/1). Cp NEBO.


AAX B&A&A&N [B], M. [A], M<MU>A&X B&AAA&N [O_ mg -] ; Ass. Marduk - aplu - iddin[a] ; Is. 39 it) was the second king of Babylon of this name. He reigned from 721-709 B.C. ; he was then driven from Babylon, but recovered his power for a few months in 702 B.C. He was a Chaldean and already king of mat Tamdim, the Sea-land, in the reign of Tiglath-pileser III. The Chaldeans had been for some time encroaching upon Babylonia, and when Tiglath-pileser in 729 B.C. de feated Merodach-baladan, he was hailed as deliverer from a foreign yoke. Merodach-baladan had been able to secure the establishment of the Chaldean usurper Ukin-zer on the throne of Babylon, and on Tiglath- pileser s expulsion of that monarch, Merodach-baladan had to feel the weight of the conqueror s resentment, and become his vassal. Tiglath-pileser s death, and the ineffective rule of Shalmaneser IV. , loosened the hold of Assyria on the S. , and when Sargon II. came to the throne of Assyria, 721 B.C., Merodach-baladan, aided and abetted by the king of Elam, took the throne of Babylon. Sargon found his hands too full in other directions to interfere. The defeat of Merodach-baladan and his Elamite allies at Dur-ilu in 721 B.C., was with out result. Each side learnt to respect the other, and suspended hostilities for the time. Sargon held N. Babylonia with Assyria ; Merodach-baladan had S. Babylon and Chaldea.

Merodach-baladan's policy was one of severe oppres sion. Owing his power to his own Chaldean subjects, to Elamite auxiliaries and Aramaic nomads, he had to provide for them. The nobles of Babylonia were sent as captives to the S. , while the marauders were enriched with their lands and possessions. Hence, when after twelve years of incessant war on every side, save that of Babylonia, Sargon directed his victorious armies to the expulsion of Merodach-baladan, he, like Tiglath-pileser, was hailed as a deliverer. Sargon states that in his twelfth year, he drove Merodach-baladan out of Babylon, and he reigned as legitimate king there himself for the last seven years of his life. Sargon is therefore the Arkeanus of the Ptolemaic Canon.

Merodach-baladan had attempted to stay Sargon s advance by an appeal to Kudur-nahundi of Elam ; but that monarch had already felt the weight of Sargon s hand and would not assist. One army broke up the Aramaic confederacy on the E. ; another marched S. on Babylon. It was in 709 B.C. that Sargon entered the city unopposed, and taking the hands of Bel became king de jure, Merodach-baladan had retreated nearer home to Ikbi-Bel in S. Babylonia. Thence he retreated again to his ancestral home of Bit Yakin. Sargon fol lowed, and routing an auxiliary force of the S. Baby lonian nomads, would have laid siege to Merodach- baladan in his stronghold. That monarch deserted his city and escaped to Elam for the time. Dur- Yakin sur rendered, and Sargon was lord of all the S. of Babylonia.

Sargon reinstated the Babylonian exiles, restored their possessions, re-established the worship of the Babylonian divinities, and Babylon had peace and pro sperity for five years. Sargon apparently fell by the hand of an assassin. For this sketch of his history cp Winckler's Sargon.

Sargon had probably left Babylon to put down the troubles in Armenia and the N. frontier states of Assyria, caused by the pressure of the Gimirri on the N., when he met his death. How long he was absent we do not know ; but Merodach-baladan must have reached home and thence intrigued for the throne of Babylon. Sennacherib states that in his first year he drove Merodach-baladan out of Babylonia and set Bel-ibni on the throne. Polyhistor assigns Merodach-baladan a reign of six months before Elibus or Belibus - i.e., Bel- ibni. After his second expulsion, Merodach-baladan continued to be a menace to Assyria. Evidently his adherents in Babylonia were powerful, for Sennacherib treated the country as hostile, and inflicted on Babylon itself a terrible vengeance. He reduced it to impotence, and in the repeated campaigns which he and his lieutenants waged, reduced all the S. to ruins. How Merodach-baladan ended his days we do not know exactly ; but his sons continued the struggle on to the days of Asur-bani-pal.

Merodach-baladan appears in 2 K. 20:12 and Is. 39:1 as king of Babylon in the time of Hezekiah. It is open to doubt whether his ambassadors really came to Hezekiah (see Che. Intr. Is. 227; Meinhold, Die Jes.- erziihlungen, ig/i ) ; if so the occasion was perhaps one of Merodach-baladan s intrigues after his expulsion from Babylon. In the present Hebrew text he is called 'son of Baladan' (see SBOT, ad loc. ) ; he himself claims (IR 5:17) to be of the ancient dynasty of Erba-Marduk. The earlier Merodach-baladan I. of Babylon was son of Melisihu, and of the Kassite dynasty, about 1167- 1154 B.C. C. H. w. j.


(Dhp-Vp; MAPPCON, Me. [BAF], MeppCOM [I-]), the scene of the great fight between the allied northern kings and Israel (Josh, 11:57 t). Many since Reland have identified the waters of Merom with the mod. Bahret el-Hule, known also as Seywexwi/mj 1 (or St/tax, Jos. Ant. v. 5:1, BJ. iii. 10:7), and as 17 Se/tte%w iTWJ \ijj.vij (BJ iv. 1:1). This identi fication rests on the precarious assumption that the name Semachonitis, like Merom, is derived from a root to be high [Ar. samaka], but also finds support in the statement of Josephus (Ant., I.c.} that Hazor lay over against it. Against this, it should be noticed that c , 'sea', not c. 'waters', would be the natural designa tion for a lake ; 2 and that the presumed situation does not quite accord with the geographical evidence in 11 8. 3 The last objection applies equally to two more recent identifications,

  • (i) Marun er-Kas (Buhl, Pal. 234) or Maron (Rob. ), situated WSW. of Kadesh ; cp Josephus (Ant. v. 1:18), who places the scene of the fight at jBypuSr) ( = Meron?), not far from Kedesh.
  • (2) Meron, WNW. of Safed, celebrated as the burial place of Hillel and Shammai (cp Rel. 817).

Meron is no doubt the ^t)pa> or aju>)pa>0 of Jos. (BJ ii. 20 6, Vit. 37), and possibly the mdrama of the name-lists of Rameses II. and Thotmes III. (cp WMM As. u. Hur. 220); in the list of Thotmes, however, Marama appears to be the name of a district (cp R PC-}, 5:44; see below). There may very well have been several places of this name ; the Onomastica mention a pcppav, inerrom, 12 mi. from Sebaste near Dothan, which they errone ously identify with our Merom (OS 278:99, 138:16).

1 For hule cp ovAatfa, Ant. xv. 10$ (see Neub. Giog. Tahn. H/. zjJF.), also the S n f Gen - 10:23. ( 1)ut see GEOGRAPHY, 20). No perfectly satisfactory suggestion has yet been made as to the origin of "33 D (also -3310), t he Talm. name of this lake ; Neub. explains reedy. The name of the Wady Setnak on the E. of the lake favours the correctness of the spelling of Josephus, and the name Semachon may really be ancient, especially if Petrie is right in identifying it with the Samhuna of Am. Tab. (220 3).

2 Cp 'waters of Megiddo' (i.e., the brook KISHON), 'waters of Jericho' (Josh. 16:1), 'waters of Meribah', and see NEPHTOAH, NIMRIM. According to Wi., the 'salt sea' of Gen. 143 means Lake Hule ; see, however, SALT SEA.

3 Cp Di. and We. ; Bu. Ri. Sa. 66, n. 2; Buhl, Pal. 113; Baed.( 2 ) 257 ; Smend in Riehm, HWB, s.v., and Benz. HA 22.

It has been shown elsewhere (see JABIN, JOSHUA, 8, JUDGES, 7) that underlying our narrative is the account of a fight in which Zebulun and Naphtali gave a decisive defeat to the allied Canaanite kings. The chief of these were probably Jabin, king of Hazor, and Jobab, king of Meron or Meroin (Madon seems to be incorrect). The victorious tribes pursued the Canaanites to Great Zidon (on the left) and the valley of Mizpah (on the right), which makes it highly probable that the scene of the fight must be placed farther N. (cp Bu. I.c.).

One solution of the problem would be this to take Merom as the name, not of a place but, of the district in which the two tribes dwelt. Jerome points to this view by his rendering of Judg. 5:18, Zebulun vero et Nephtali obtulerunt animas snas in regione Aferome, and a tempting correction of Dt. 33:23 (due to Clericus ; see Schenkel, BL, s.v. 'Merom' ) would give welcome support * to the proposed theory, which is virtually that of Kneucker in BL. In this case 'waters of Merom' may be the designation of some stream which watered it. The district intended (which would lie N. of Lake Hiile) may perhaps be the second or more southerly state of ZOBAH (q. v. ). - [It is possible that the problem of the 'Waters of Merom' may be treated most satis factorily as a part of a larger problem, viz. , where was the scene of the war with Jabin ? There may have been an early misunderstanding. See SHIMRON.]

S. A. C.


(WTO), the designation of Jehdeiah (i Ch. 27:30. O e /v\ep&6u>N [BL], o 6K MARAOCGN [A], cp Pesh. ) and Jadon (Neh. 3:7; BA om. , o MHpcoN&e<MOC [L]) ; Jadon is associated with men of Gibeon and Mizpah, near which places Meronoth (?) must have been.


(TITO ; MHpooz [B], MAZCOR [A. see Moore], MARCOp [L]), a locality mentioned in the Song of Deborah, as cursed by the 'angel of Yahwe' (i.e., probably the 'captain of Yahwe's host', Josh. 5;13-15 ; see ANGEL, 2) because 'they came not to the help of Yahwe, as valiant men' (Judg. 5:23). The description of the discomfiture of the Canaanites by Israel precedes ; the blessing upon Jael follows. Jael is not an Israelite ; Meroz, therefore, need not be an Israelitish locality. Jael, too, comes from the far S. of Palestine ; Meroz, therefore, probably is a part of the same region. It is evidently a well-known locality, and since no 'Meroz' is known, 3 nor is there a Hebrew root nx, 'to take refuge', the form needs emendation in the light of the considerations just mentioned. There fore, though Meron could easily have become Meroz, neither Shimron-meron (Josh. 12:20) nor Meron (Meiron) near Safed (Talm. ) can be referred to. The form in LXX{AMO} , however (Moore), yields up its secret at once. Mazor comes from Missur (lisp) - i.e. , the N. Arabian Musur or Musri, where in fact the Heberites, like all the Kenites, had dwelt.

Israel and Musur were linked hv the closest ties ; such at any rate must have been the belief of the author or reviser of the song. KADESH (y.r .)was in Musur ; Hobab the Kenite, Moses father-in-law, himself a worshipper of Yahwe, dwelt in Musur. The Kenites were represented certainly by Jael, not impossibly too by Barak (a corruption of Heber?), yet the Musrites - the other Musrites (see HOBAB), we may say - sent no contingent to the army of Yahwe.

Though Winckler is not responsible for the above, it is plain that it fits admirably into his theory of the importance of Musri in the Hebrew tradition. See MIZRAIM, 20.

T. K. C.

1 On Judg. 5:18 Vg. see Moore s remarks Judges, 157, and cp Marq. Fund. 6, where mfc is explained as mountain country (Ass. sadu; see FIELD, i).

2 Possibly our Merom is to be read in i Ch. 18:8 where pup, 'from Cun' (certainly wrong) should possibly be emended into 'from Meron' (Merom). For analogies cp the form iven by Jos. Ant. v. 1:18 (see above), also ajurjpajfl (ib.) for mod. nitron. See BEKOTHAI, BETAH, CHUN.

s The combination of 'Meroz' with Murassas, E. of Jezreel, NW. of Beisan (Guerin ; cp Buhl, 217) is therefore too hazardous.


(MCRPAN [BAQF]), Bar. 3:23 RV, AV MERAN (q.v. ).


(eMMHROyO [A]), i Esd. 5:24 = Ezra 2:37, IMMER 2.


(/v\eccAAu>e [A]), i Macc. 9:2 RV. AV MASALOTH. See ARBELA.


CTC 9). Ps. 120:5 (text doubtful) AV, RV MESHECH. See TUBAL AND MESHECH.


(NC D ; MACCH [L], - H e [A], MANACCH [E]). Gen. 10:30 gives the limits of the territory of the descendants of Joktan from Mesha towards Sephar, the mountain of the East. The former limit, Mesha, has been sought in the Greek Mesene (Ges. Thes. and often), the territory about the mouth of the Euphrates and Tigris ; but there is no evidence that this name was applied to that territory in Assyrian times, and the alluvial changes that have taken place there make inferences from a later age particularly untrustworthy (see Del. Par. 173-182); Delitzsch (Par. -2^2 f. ) sup poses that both Mesene and Mesha are derived from Masu the Syro- Arabian desert, particularly in its NE. portion and that this is referred to in Gen. 10:30. However, the lack of any representation of the N, the difference in the first vowel, and the very large extent and indefiniteness of Masu (hardly suitable for a bound ary mark) make the identification uncertain.

Dillmann, therefore, proposes to change the points of NB D, and read Nij p (cp (), which is the name of a branch of the Ishmaelites (see ISHMAEL, 4 [6]. The theory is certainly plausible. Massa would then mark the northern limit of the Joktanite tribes. F. B.


(NKP, 5, 39 ; abbrev. from MISHAEL ; a fern, name NtJ"!D s found in Palm, [see ZDHfG^ 534, n. 8, and KQ/4 33 ]; cp M ara; /Lu<ra [BL], ,uw<ra [A] JJJL-* [Pesh.]),

a name in a genealogy of BENJAMIN [q.v., 9, 2/3], i Ch. Sg.t See JQR 11 108, 6 ; see also 8 3-


(M? ?? ; MCOCA [BAL]),

i. king of Moab (2 K. 3:4), a sheepmaster, who was tributary to Ahab, and paid the king of Israel an annual tax consisting of the wool of 100,000 lambs and 100,000 rams. The word rendered 'sheepmaster' (n|5i) is peculiar, and might be better represented by 'nakad-owner' - the term nakad, as Arab, shows, denoting a particular kind of sheep, small and stunted in growth, but prized on account of their wool (see SHEEP).

What we know respecting Mesha centres round two events: (i. ) his revolt from Israel; and (ii. ) the war undertaken by Jehoram, Ahab's son, who came to the throne after the two-years reign of his brother Ahaziah (2 K. 1:1, 3:1), to re-subjugate Moab.

1. Mesha's Stone.[edit]

i. Mesha s revolt. The biblical notice of the revolt from Israel is limited to the brief statement in 2 K. 1:1 (substantially = 3:5). In 1868, however, the Rev. F. Klein, a missionary of the Church Missionary Society, stationed at Jerusalem, in the course of an expedition on the E. side of the Dead Sea, was shown at Dhiban, 4 mi. N. of the Arnon, the site of the ancient DIBON (q.v. ), a slab of black basalt, about 3.5 ft. high by 2 ft. wide, bearing an inscription, which proved ultimately to contain Mesha s own account of the circumstances of the revolt. M. Clermont-Ganneau, at that time an attache" of the French Consulate in Jerusalem, had, however, known independ ently for some time past of the existence of such a stone, and exerted himself now to secure it. Through, as it seems, some imprudent eagerness manifested by him, the suspicions and cupidity of the native Arabs were aroused ; they imagined that they were about to be deprived of some valuable talisman ; they consequently seized the stone, and partially destroyed it. Fortunately, a squeeze of the inscription had been obtained previously for M. Clermont-Ganneau, though not without much difficulty and danger, by a young Arab named Yakub Caravacca ; many of the fragments also were afterwards recovered, and as far as possible pieced together, by the same accomplished palaeographer ; 1 accordingly, al though parts here and there are uncertain or missing, the inscription is in the main quite intelligible and clear. The stone, with the missing parts supplied in plaster of Paris from the squeeze, together with the squeeze itself, is pre served in the Museum of the Louvre (see the reproduction after col. 3042) ; there is also a facsimile in the British Museum.

2. The inscription.[edit]

The characters are of the same type as those of the old Phoenician alphabet, and of the Siloam inscription. A transliteration will be found facing the illustration, below.

The horizontal line above a letter indicates that it is doubtful. The points between the words, and the perpendicular lines at the ends of sentences, are marked on the stone. In cases of doubt, the readings adopted are usually those of Lidzbarski (Ephemerisfiir Sent. Epigraphik, 1:1+ [1900]). There can be little question that in Smend and Socin s edition (Die Inschrift des Konigs Mesa, etc., 1886) letters are given (esp. at the ends of lines) which are not really to be seen on either the stone or the squeeze. Smend and Socin s new readings were examined with great care by Clermont- Ganneau (La stele lie Mesa, e.ramen critique du texte, in the /As., Jan. 1887, pp. 72-112), and Renan(S0urn.desSavans, 1887, pp. 158-164); and the text published in Dr. J 1 /?.? [1890], p. Ixxxvi, incorporated the results of their criticism. The uncertain places were again re-examined by K. G. A. Nordlander in 1896 (Die Inschr. des Koenigs Mesa von Moab), and most recently, as stated above, by the skilled epigraphist Lidzbarski, whose final readings, however, vary from those adopted in TBS only in minutiae. A statement of the reasons for the readings adopted here has not seemed to be necessary, except in one or two instances.

1 An independent copy of //. 13-20 had also been made for M. Clermont-Ganneau, before the stone was destroyed, by another Arab, Selim el Kari : see the Exam. crit. 84. Squeezes of differ ent fragments were also obtained by Capt. (now Sir C.) Warren.

2 Numbers in parenthesis indicate lines of the inscription.

3 S. and S., Nordl., i^BB B3i Chemosh-melek ; Cl.-G., njB723 Chemosh-gad, with the suggestion that perhaps ~^tJ D3, Che- moshshillek (cp Phcen. Eshmun-shillek, Ba alshillek) should be read. Lidzb., after a careful measurement, declares that there is not room for more than two letters after ^33 : from such traces as are visible on the squeeze, he thinks the first most probably 3, the second may be 3, o, 3, or ;. Without definitely deciding, he suggests J315 S3 as possible : cp W33 , VT33.

4 The vocalisation of names given in capitals is uncertain. On the [H] in /. 3, see Rev. Sem. 0371 [1901]. KRHH was most probably a part of Dibon (No.), perhaps a suburb (Halevy, il>. 300); though Lagrange (Re<>. Bil l. 10 527^ [1901]) identifies with Kir-hareseth, rendering for Chemosh [the god] in KRHH.

8 After 2 there is, according to Lidzb., only J (j) to be seen, which, however, might easily be the remains of ^ fo). After J , Lidzb. thought that he could discern three parallel strokes, like those of ~jp (Q), and afterwards some marks which might be remains of a 3 : he accordingly suggests -p33 After this, nothing is visible ; but there is room for one, or even two letters : the i therefore, is quite possible. S. and S., and Nordl., read 5-j;rD3i which, with the foil, yp, Nordl. renders for many deliverances (the duplication as 2 K. 3 16, etc.). [ nDla> tne suggestion of Nold., adopted by Wright and others, as it does not seem to be impossible, and (unlike Lidzb. s -jDJ3i wit.h a libation of deliver ance ?) yields a good sense, has been retained here.

8 S. and S., pS Dn ; Cl.-G. and Nordl., pa jB rc, with which Lidzb. agrees, remarking that there is no trace of the shaft of the ^J (Q) after the n- What joVtJ ma V mean, is, however, far from apparent. In Heb. I ^tt n (not used in Kal) means to cast Ot fling: in Arabic salaka (i) is to insert, put in, make to enter (on a way) : possibly in Moabitish the verb may have acquired the meaning of to impel, assail. Still, what we should expect is some term denoting a class (such as the raiders, the shooters ), not one that would be more naturally qualified by my.

7 See Deut. 2224, and cp Ges.-Kautzsch, inh, n. Or, if it might be supposed that the engraver had accidently omitted ^>y after Vo> Omri reigned over Israel, and afflicted, etc.

3. Translation.[edit]

The language in which the inscription is written differs only dialectically from the Hebrew of the OT. Here is a translation of the inscription :

(I) 2 I am Mesha , son of Chemosh[kan?],3 king of Moab, the Daibonite. W My father reigned over Moab for thirty years, and I reigned (3) after my father. And I made this high place for Chemosh in KR[H]H, 4 a [high place of sal] 5 vation, (4) because he had saved me from all the assailants (?), 6 and because he had let me see (my desire) upon all them that hated me. Omri, (B) king of Israel, afflicted 7 Moab for many days, because Chemosh was angry with his land. (6) And his son succeeded him ; and he also said, I will afflict Moab. In my days said he [thus ;] (7) but I saw (my desire) upon him, and upon his house, and Israel perished with an everlasting destruction.
Omri took possession of the [la]nd (8) of Mehedeba, 1 and it (i.e. Israel) dwelt therein, during his days, and half his son s days. forty years ; but Chemosh [restojred (9) it in my days.
And I built Ba'al-Me'on, and I made in it the reservoir H and I buil[tj (10) Kiryathen.
And the men of Gad had dwelt in the land of Ataroth from of old ; and the king of Israel (H) had built for himself Ataroth. And I fought against the city, and took it. And I slew all the people [from] 12)the city, agazingstock unto Chemosh, and unto Moab. And I brought back (or, took captive) thence the altar-hearth of Dawdoh(V), and I dragged (13)it before Chemosh in Keriyyoth. And I settled therein the men of SRN,- and the men of (14) M H R T.
And Chemosh said unto me, Go, take Nebo against Israel. And I (15) went by night, and fought against it from the break of dawn until noon. And I took (16) it, and slew the whole of it, 7000 men and male strangers, 3 and women and [female strangerjs, (IT) and female slaves : 4 for I had devoted it to Ashtor-Chemosh. And I took thence the [ves]sels (18)of Yahwe, and I dragged them before Chemosh.
And the king of Israel had built (19)Yahas, and abode in it, while he fought against me. But Chemosh drave him out from before me ; and (20)1 took of Moab 200 men, even all its chiefs ; and I led them up against Yahas, and took it (21) to add it unto Daibon. I built KRHH,2 the wall of Ye arin (or, of the Woods), and the wall of (22) the Mound. 9 And I built its gates, and I built its towers. And (23)1 built the king s palace, and I made the two reser[voirs (?) for wa]ter in the midst of (24) the city. And there was no cistern in the midst of the city, in KRHH. 2 And I said to all the people, Make (26) you every man a cistern in his house. And I cut out the cutting for KRHH 2 with (the help of) prisoners (26) of] Israel.
I built Aro'er, and I made the highway by the Arnon. (27) I built Beth-Bamoth, for it was pulled down. I built Beser, for ruins (28) [had it become. And the chie]fs6of Daibon were fifty, for all Daibon was obedient (to me). And I reigned (29) [over] an hundred [chiefs] in the cities which I added to the land. And I built (30) [Mehe]de[b]a,l and Beth-Diblathen, and Beth-Ba'al-Me'on ; and I took thither the nakad 7 -keepers, (31) ........ sheep of the land.
And as for Horonen, there dwelt therein .... (32). . . . And Chemosh said unto me, Go down, fight against Horonen. And I went down .... (33)8. ... [and] Chemosh [restored it in my days. And ........ (34)9. . . . And I ....

[here goes picture of THE MOABITE STONE]


1 in . 3x0 . i?o . f5po3 . p . 1^0 . -px 1
2 K>7B> 2XO . 71; "|7 . 2X I 32* 2
3 p . no]2 i nfnp2 . 027 . nxr . no2n . tryxi i 2x . inx . n 3
4 Dnn7n . "n . 2&" 13 . B XI 72 . B>X non . nmp 4
5 1X2 . E^O2 . S^X^ . 2 . pn . }O . 2X0 . nX . 13J? l . 7X1B . 170 . 5
6 . lox . on i 2x0 . nx . i3j?x . xn . DJ iox i . n32 . nD7n i i nx 6
7 [ix] . nx . noi; . &n i 071? . 12X . i2x . "pxi^ i i nn22i . n2 . xixi 7
8 ^i . nt? . jmix n33 O . xm . no . n3 . 3&"i i X3ino . p 8
9 [j]3xi . rwxn . n2 . trrxi . jWD?lQ . nx . pxi i O 3 . ^02 . .12 9
10 . pp n? p i chvv . mar . px2 . 2&" 13 . B XI i jnnp . nx 10
11 [o] . Dun . 72 . nx . nnxi i nmxi . ip2 . Dnnbxi i nisi; . nx . 7xi 11
12 [Dixi . mn bxix . nx . DBO . 2^x1 i 2x0^1 . ^02^ . nn . ipn 12
13 cx nxi . pt? E x . nx n2 . nt?xi i nnp2 . ^02 . 327 . n2n 13
14 xi i ?ine* 7i? n23 . nx . mx . i? ^02 . *? . iox i i mno 14
15 nxi i ninxn 11; . nin^n . rp2o . nn nnn_7xi . n?73 . i?n 15
16 [ij] i . n~i3ii i pai - p33 . ]D7X . njDt? . n73 . nnxi . nr 16
17 [2_. nix . D>o . npxi i nnoinn . ^02 . in&*i?? . 2 i n . n n 17
18 fix . n32 . ?xi" 17O1 i E>O2 . 3D7 on . 2noxi . nin , ? 18
19 i . 3so . ETO3 . nsjnj 1 i 2 . nonn?n2 . n2 . 2Bi fn 19
20 nmxi p 3 . nx^xi i nsn . 72 . B>X . jnxo . 2x00 . npx 20
21 nom . pirn non . nmp . n32 . 13X i pn . 71; . nso? 21
22 xi i nnSnjo . n32 . 13x1 . n lrt^ . n32 . 13x1 i 7Di;n 22
23 7i? n23 . nbxix . nx . Dn3 . 3&"i i n2 . 2B" pnniBO . x . mx 23
24 ^ . itri; . nyn . 727 10x1 . nmp2 . npn . 3ip2 . jx . 121 i npn 24
25 -iDX2 . nmp 1 ? nni2on . ni2 13x1 i nn 22 12 t^x . 02 25
26 . 2&" gt;X . jnxi c E xvv . ma i nsn r . x2x^x . 2&"o 11; . ni 26
27 . pr . >2 1X3 n33 . 13X i xn . Din . 3 . no2 . n2 . n32 . 13X 27
28 ^on . pn . w 28
29 n32 . 13x1 i pxn . 71; nso iB x . pp2 . nxo pin 29
30 yo7r3 . n2i i ;n72n . n2i xinnot . nxi . 30
31 xx 31
32 nixi i piin2 Dnn7n . "n e*o2 . 7 iox i 32
33 xix . nx . n32 . 13X i ni2 1i x . pp2 33
34 3x1 1 pit? n> 34


1 I am Mesha , son of Chemosh[kan ?], king of Moab, the Daibonite. 1
2 My father reigned over Moab for thirty years, and I reigned 2
3 after my father. And I made this high place for Chfimosh in KR[H]H, a [high place of sal]vation, 3
4 because he had saved me from all the assailants (?), and because he had let me see (my desire) upon all them that hated me. Omri, 4
5 king of Israel, afflicted Moab for many days, because Chemosh was angry with his land. 5
6 And his son succeeded him ; and he also said I will afflict Moab. In my days said he [thus ;] 6
7 but I saw (my desire) upon him, and upon his house, and Israel perished with an everlasting destruction. Omri took possession of the [la]nd 7
8 of Mehedeba, and it (i.e. , Israel) dwelt therein, during his days, and half his son s days, forty years ; but Chemosh [resto]red 8
9 it in my days. And I built Ba'al-Me'on, and I made in it the reservoir (?) ; and I buil[t] 9
10 Kiryathen. And the men of Gad had dwelt in the land of Ataroth from of old ; and the king of Israel 10
11 had built for himself Ataroth. And I fought against the city, and took it. And I slew all the people [from] 11
12 the city, a gazingstock unto Chemosh, and unto Moab. And I brought back (or, took captive) thence the altar-hearth of Dawdoh (?), and I dragged 12
13 it before Chemosh in Keriyyoth. And I settled therein the men of SRN, and the men of 13
14 MHRT. And Chemosh said unto me, Go, take Nebo against Israel. And I 14
15 went by night, and fought against it from the break of dawn until noon. And I took 15
16 it, and slew the whole of it, 7000 men and male strangers, and women and [female stranger ]s, 16
17 and female slaves : for I had devoted it to Ashtor-Chemosh. And I took thence the [vesjsels 17
18 of Yahwe, and I dragged them before Chemosh. And the king of Israel had built 18
19 Yahas, and abode in it, while he fought against me. But Chemosh drave him out from before me ; and 19
20 I took of Moab 200 men, even all its chiefs ; and I led them up against Yahas, and took it 20
21 to add it unto Daibon. I built KRHH, the wall of Ye'arin (or, of the Woods), and the wall of 21
22 the Mound. And I built its gates, and I built its towers. And 22
23 I built the king s palace, and I made the two reserfvoirs (?) for wa]ter in the midst of 23
24 the city. And there was no cistern in the midst of the city, in KRHH. And I said to all the people, Make 24
25 you every man a cistern in his house. And I cut out the cutting for KRHH, with (the help of) prisoners 25
26 of] Israel. I built Aro er, and I made the highway by the Arnon. 26
27 I built Beth-Bamoth, for it was pulled down. I built Beser, for ruins - 27
28 [had it become. And the chie]fs of Daibon were fifty, for all Daibon was obedient (to me). And I reigned 28
29 [over] an hundred [chiefs] in the cities which I added to the land. And I built 29
30 [Mehe]de[b]a, and Beth-Diblathen, and Beth- Ba al-Me on ; and I took thither the nakad-keepers, 30
31 sheep of the land. And as for Horondn, there dwelt therein 31
32 .... And Chemosh said unto me, Go down, fight against Horonen. And I went down .... 32
33 [and] Chemosh [resto]red it in my days. And ......... 33
34 And I .... 34

1 The Medibah of Nu. 21:30, Josh. 13:9, 13:16, Is. 15:2.

2 The vocalisation of names given in capitals is uncertain.

3 I.e., resident aliens (the Heb. 13). Or (pronouncing HI;! p.3), upon the suggestion that "IIS, which in Heb. denotes the young of a lion, in Moab. denoted young people, lads . . . and [lass]es (so S. and S., Cl.-G., Lidzb.).

4 See Judg. 5:30.

5 In Heb. the word C?BJ7) is used of a fortified hill or mound: cp (in Samaria) 2 K. 5:24, and (in Jerusalem) Is. 32:14, 2 Ch. 273 33 14, Neh. 3:26 / See OPHEL.

6 That is to say, tyhi n nl ! S 9 Derenbourg (1870), S. and S., and most. Halevy, however, in his study of the inscription (Rev. Sem. 1900, pp. 236-8, 289 ff.) suggests plausibly (p. 292) B [N3l for E hl] *> I built Beser, for ruins had it become, ivith the help <j/[cp /. 25] fifty men of Daibon, etc.

7 The reading is possible, though not certain. Lidzbarski prefers nj-5, after which Halevy supplies (I.c.) triNl 1p3rt 3 3B Dl - e -< th e choicest of the oxen, and the best of the] sheep ; but there does not seem to be room for more than nine letters, and the meaning given to c Jil D ( 'le plus exquis' ) s questionable, having no support from Heb. usage.

8 Halevy conjectures [p-| jc Hp3 Cnn (32 ^Nl] *- e -t <an d fought against the city for many days.

9 The first two words here are obscure. Halevy proposes, And beside it there was set (CC D .TV Vjn), supposing the sequel to relate to a guard of twenty men : but the sing, followed ty [nor plu V is difficult. The gap is, in fact, too large to be filled up with any confidence.

4. Language.[edit]

The inscription is of interest, philologically as well as historically, though only a few of its more salient features can be noticed here. In syntax, form of sentence, and general mode of ex pression, it resembles closely the earlier historical nar ratives of the OT. The vocabulary, with two or three exceptions, is identical with that of Hebrew. In some respects, the language of the inscription even shares with Hebrew distinctive features, such as are not known in the other Semitic languages.

Thus, the waw consec. with the imperf., yenn 'to save', ntyj? 'to make', QJ 'also', 3 rrNI, C l* 'to take in possession', yin>

  • 3B7i mnx, D inn 'to ban', eni, 31J33, and esp. -IE-N. It shares

pN) as the pron. of the 1st pers. sing., with Heb. and Phoen., as against Aram., Arab., and Eth. (in all of which the form is without the -j).

The most noticeable differences, as compared with Heb., are the n of the fern. sing. , and the | of the dual J (note, however, cins /. 15), and plural (the n. a "d the j of the plur., occurring only sporadically in the OT), nxl noan (not nxn) I- 3, the conjug. CrmSl (the Arab. 8), vp city, jnx to take a cit y (Heb. ij 1 ?), and some words which, though they occur in the OT, are not the usual prose terms viz., rj^rt /. 6 to succeed (cp Is. 9 9, and Ar. halafa), ypi I. 15 of the break of dawn (Is. 588, but in prose rby, Gen. lOijetc.), p33 (exceptional in Heb., as Jer. 436 44 20) and rn3S ( = Heb. D 3) /. 16, nbrn /. i7(Judg. 630).

Some of the more interesting parallels to the OT in matter or expression may be briefly noted.

line 3 the no 3 or 'high-place' (cp Is. 15 2 16 12 in Moab itself, as well as often besides) ; l. 13 etc., Chemosh, the national god of Moab (Nu. 21:29 Jer. 48:46 etc.) ; ll. 4, 7, to look upon an enemy (viz., with satisfaction at his fall), Ps. 59:11 [10], 118:7 ; l. 5 afflicted, Ex. 1:11 etc. ; Chemosh was angry with his land, cp 2 K. 17:18 Ps. 60:3(1) ; l. 10 the Gadites in Ataroth (11 mi. N. of the Arnon) 'from of old', cp Nu. 32:3 34 (GAD, 8) ; l. 12 a gazingstock unto Chemosh Nah. 36 Ezek. 2R:17 ; altar-hearth, Ezek. 43:15-16 ;

. 13 before Chrmosh (in triumph), cp before Yahwe, I S. 15

2 S. 21:9 ; ll. :14, :32, and Chemosh said, etc., cp Josh. 8:1, Judg. 7:9, 1 S. 23:4, 2 S. 24:1 ; l. 17 nvinn to ban or devote, as 1 S. 15:3 and often ; 1.19 to drive out before, exactly as Dt. 33:27, Josh. 24:18 ; l. 28 nyOtt (lit. obedience), the construction exactly as Is. 11:14.

The localities named in the inscription are nearly all men tioned in the passages of the OT which describe the territory of Reuben or Gad (Nu. 32:34-38, Josh. 13:15-28), or allude to the country held by Moab (esp. Is. 15 Jer. 48) : the only places not mentioned in the OT are rtmp, pe i mnQ, a "d pyn, For further particulars, see the writings cited below, 7, esp. the monographs of Noldeke and Nordlander ; also Dr. TBS, pp. Ixxxix-xciv, and the textual details in W. H. Bennett s art. Moab in Hastings DB.

5. Historical questions.[edit]

We may proceed now to notice the chief features of historical interest presented by the inscription. According to Nu. 21:13, Josh. 13:15-28, the Arnon formed the dividing-line between Israel and Moab on the E of Jordan, the territory N. of it being assigned formally to the tribes of Reuben and Gad ; but these tribes were never able to hold it permanently against the encroachments of the Moabites. David had reduced the Moabites to the condition of tributaries ; but it may be inferred from Mesha's inscription that this relation had not been maintained. Omri, however, the capable founder of the fourth Israelite dynasty, determined to re-assert the Israelite claim, and gained possession of at least the district around Medeba (12 m. E. of the N. end of the Dead Sea on the N. border of Reuben, acc. to Jos. 13:9, 13:16) which was retained by Israel for forty years till the middle of Ahab's reign, when Mesha revolted.

According to 2 K. 1:1, 3:5, the revolt took place after Ahab s death (853-2 B.C.) ; but l. 8 of the inscription names expressly the middle of the reign of Omri's son - i.e., of Ahab. The state ment occasions, however, a difficulty : for according to 1 K. 16:23, 16:29, Omri reigned twelve years and Ahab twenty-two years ; whereas forty years reckoned back from Ahab's eleventh year to Omri's conquest of Moab would imply that Omri's reign embraced at least twenty-nine years, instead of twelve. Nordlander, how ever (p. 70), and Winckler (AOF 2:406, in an art. on Die Zeilan- gaben Mesas), read 'his sons' days (i1J3, like HC^, in the same line), in which case the 22 years of Ahab would be increased by the 2 of Ahaziah (1 K. 22:51) and the 12 of Jehoram (2 K. 3:1). This, if it does not wholly remove the difficulty, at least diminishes it: if the half of these three reigns be not taken too strictly, but allowed to mean (say) 20-21 years, it will bring the revolt very near the end of Ahab s reign, and with the addition of Omri s 12 years, will yield a period which might not unfairly be described roundly as forty years. In any case, the use of the term half shows that the inscription was not set up until after the completion of the other half of the period referred to; in all probability, not until after the fall of the dynasty of Omri, which, not less than Mesha's own successes, may well be alluded to in the destruction of l. 7. (The rendering of l. 8 suggested above is ingenious, but scarcely probable.)

How complete was the state of subjection to which Moab had been reduced is shown by the enormous tribute of wool paid annually (notice the frequentative tense 3 BTTi) to Israel (2 K. 34). The inscription names the principal cities which had been occupied by the Israelites, but were now recovered for Moab ; and states further how Mesha was careful to rebuild and fortify them, and to provide them with cisterns and other requisites for resisting a siege. So far as is known, all the cities mentioned (except, as it seems, Horonaim) lay within the disputed territory N. of the Arnon. The evident satisfaction with which Mesha records the triumphs of Chemosh over Yahwe (ll. 12, 17-18) is a characteristic trait in the religious feeling of the times.

1 Vocalised by Noldeke (p. 33) -fn ; but to be read as -an (Kiryathan, etc.), if the view be correct (Ges.-Kau., 88 c with the refT.) that these forms are not properly duals, but noun- endings : see, however, Ki mig, ii. 1 437.

6. Jehoram's war.[edit]

ii. Jehoram's war. The attempt made by Jehoram to subjugate Moab, and recover the lost territory, forms the subject of 2 K. 3:6-27 : Mesha is not, in deed, mentioned here by name ; but the connection leaves no doubt that he is the 'king of Moab' intended. Jehoram, Jehoshaphat, and the king of Edom, uniting their forces, marched round the S. end of the Dead Sea - for the cities N. of the Arnon, which, as we have learnt from the inscription, had been fortified by Mesha, would be an obstacle to invasion from that direction - and so entered the territory of Moab. The invading army suffered from want of water : at Jehoshaphat's suggestion (cp 1 K. 22:7), the prophet Elisha (who happened to be present) is consulted : he bids them dig trenches in the sandy soil, which are speedily filled with the needed water. The Moabites, seeing the rays of the rising sun reflected in the pools, imagined that the invaders had quarrelled and massacred one another : eager to spoil what they suppose to lie the abandoned camp, they rush forward, but are repelled and put to flight with great loss. After this, the combined armies advance into the land un opposed, and make havoc of it in every direction. Mesha, reduced to desperation, by his vain endeavours to escape out of Kir-hareseth, offers his eldest son 'that should have reigned in his stead' as a burnt-offering, to propitiate the anger of his god : there came in conse quence 'great wrath' upon Israel, and the Israelites, without pursuing their successes further, at once evacu ated the country. Mesha, though his land and people had suffered greatly, was thus left in possession of his independence. (See, further, on some details of this narrative, ELISHA, 5, JEHORAM, 3-4, KIR-HARESETH, also SALT [VALLEY OF]. )

7. Literature.[edit]

Among the abundant literature dealing with the Moabite stone may be mentioned in particular (in addition to what has been already referred to) two arts, by Clermont-Ganneau in the A"<T>. Arc/t. 1870, Mar., pp. 184-207, June, pp. 357-386 ; Noldeke, Die Inschr.des K. Mesa von A/crt/ (i87o)(insome cases founded upon readings discovered since to be incorrect, and hence to be supplemented by an art. in the LCRl. Jan. 8, 1887, cols. 59-61); Ginsburg, The Moabite Stone (very full), 1870,12) 1871, [Prof. W. Wright,] North British Review, Oct. 1870, pp. 1-29 (very valuable). For other literature, see Lidzbarski s Handb. tier Nordsem. Epi- grafthik, 415 (1898), with the references. On the history of the discovery of the stone, and questions arising out of it, see Clermont- Ganneau, La stele de Mesa roi de Moab, 1870 (a short brochure, with plate and map the first public notice of the stone); Ginsburg(2), qjf. 31 jf. ; PEFQ, Jan. -March, 1870, pp. 169^ (a reprint of letters in the Times by Warren, Grove, Deutsch, and Clermont-Ganneau). and 1871, pp. 281 ff. (letter from Klein), Petermann, ZDMG 24(1870), 640-44 (transl. in Ginsb.W i2_ff.): some of the judgments passed on Clermont-Ganneau to be qualified by the remarks of Wright, 3 ; cp also Warren, PEFQ, I.e., p. 182. On the arts, of Halevy and Winckler referred to above, see also Lidzbarski, F.pheiii.fiir Sent. Ef>igr. 1 143-5.

2. A Calebite, father of Ziph ; i Ch. 2 42 (yy S, napfiva. [B], /uapio-as [A], /OLOVOW [LI; u-IC,*. ^.!^ [Pesh.] ; Mesa [Vg.]). Probably a corrupt reading for MARESHA [f.v.]. S. R. D.


n J : VD), Dan. 1:7 . See SHADRACH AND MESHACH.