Encyclopaedia Biblica/Minnith-Mole

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(JVjID ; eisi apiGMco [B], eic ce/v\coei9 [A], ce/v\eNei0 [L ; ? ce /weNeiG]. ce eic MCOIG ecoc THC oAoY M&Nooe [see HP], M&NI&GHC [Jos. Ant. v. 7 10] ; MEXXITH [Vg.] ; ascent of Machir [Pesh.]), a locality E. of Jordan mentioned in the account of Jephthah 's victory over Ammon (Judg. 11:33 ; on Ezek. 27:17 see end of article). The identification is most uncertain, 1 and one may question the correct ness of the reading (see below). The matter cannot be treated without reference to literary criticism (see JEPHTHAH, 2). It is probable that Holzinger and Buckle are correct in their view that the chapter contains the traces of another war where Moab, not Ammon, is the foe. The geographical notices of both defeats survive (doubtless not in their original form) in v. 33, where ri*30 ^Ni3"iy and c p")3" ?3X "ijn are clearly doublets. The mention of Aroer, however, con stitutes a difficulty. It is generally assumed to be the Ammonite city (AKOER, 2); but this is unlikely if ABEL- CHEKAMIM is rightly identified, and if Minnith is indeed the maanith which Eusebius (OSP1 280 44) places 4 m. from Heshbon on the road to Rabbath- Ammon. <, however, inserts #xpts Apvuv [achris Arnon] and Budde (KHC, Richter) suggests that from Minnith to Aroer (on the Arnon, cp v. 26) was the extent of the Moabite defeat, and that of the Ammonites was in an easterly direction to Abel- cheramim. This view does not sufficiently allow for the possibility of deeper corruption. One expects the Ammonite defeat to have extended from N. to S., and hence it is possible that rrso has arisen from rurro, a parallel form to MAHANAIM (q.v. n. 1, cp We. C7/( 3 > 43 n. ). [For another view, that originally Missur (the N. Arabian Musri) and Amalek = Jerahmeel, kindred peoples, took the place of Moab and Ammon, see MOAB, 14+]

Originally, perhaps, the Ammonites were routed 'from Mahanaim to Abel-cheramim' ; the extent of the Moabite defeat, on the other hand, must remain unknown. The exist ence of 'a Moabite Minnith' (cp Bu. I.c.), in spite of the testimony of Eusebius, is doubtful. Minnith, in fact, is nowhere else mentioned, since, although the land of Ammon was rich in cereals (cp the tribute of barley, 2 Ch. 27:5), the mention of 'wheat of Minnith' (Ezek. 27:17) is due to a textual corruption, for which Cornill with an obvious gain in sense reads rtNbil G En ( 'wheat and spices' ); see PANNAG, STORAX. s. A. C.


i. }|3O, menaggen, 2 K. 3:15, cp. //fl&rz, , nogemin, Ps. 68:25 [26], RV 'minstrels', AV 'players on instruments'. See Music.

2. auArjTij? [auletes], Mt. 9:23. See Music, 4 ; MOURNING CUSTOMS.


(H^YOCMON ; mentha ; Mt. 23:23, Lk. 11:42+) was a well-known garden herb in ancient times (yvupi- (j.ov fioTdviov, Diosc. 841). Dioscorides does not think it necessary to describe it. The species chiefly grown in Palestine is the horse-mint, Mentha sylvestris, L. The tithing of mint is not expressly referred to in the Talmud (cp Low, 259^!).


(l^n 1^ ), Neh. 3:31. See JERUSALEM, 24 (10).


See WONDERS ; also GOSPELS, 137+, and JOHN (SON OF ZEBEDEE), 20, 25, etc.


(T1" ), Is. 35?, RV n e-( H ANY^poc). 49io, RV n K- (KAYCOON).

This well-known phenomenon of dry regions might of course be referred to in these passages (so Ges. and most moderns) ; but see DESERT, 2 (8).

1 See Moore, Judg., ad loc. ; Buhl, Pal. 266.


(DnO; /wApiA/v\[BAFL], cpTarg. etc. and see NAMES, 6). Possibly from rrc-py (Che., cp Nu. 3:27); see MOSES, 2; Bateson Wright, how ever, connects the name with 'Merari' ( Was Israel ever in Egypt? 213 ; see also MARY, 1).

1. The sister of Aaron and Moses who accompanied Israel as far as Kadesh, where she died and was buried (Nu. 20:1). If we pass over the inclusion of her name in the Levitical genealogies (Nu. 26:59 [|| Ex. 6:20 MT om. but cp LXX BAFL ], 1 Ch. 6:3 [5:29]) Miriam is first mentioned in the older narratives on the occasion of the crossing of the Red Sea. She is styled 'the prophetess' (nK*3|ri) and appears at the head of a female choir celebrating the recent deliverance (Ex. 15:20-21, E, see POETICAL LITERATURE, 4, iii. ). Although not specifically named, Miriam is no doubt the 'sister' alluded to in the story of the birth of Moses (Ex. 2:13-14., cp vv. 4, 7). and if v. i belongs to the original narrative it is certain that the writer looked upon her (and also Aaron) as the step-sister (and step-brother) of the child. Apart from the notice of her death at Kadesh (Nu. I.c.), she is only once again mentioned in the Hexateuch - viz., Nu. 12:1-15, wherewith Aaron she rebels against the authority of Moses and is punished with leprosy.

The passage is not free from difficulties. 1 That connected with v. i is dealt with elsewhere (see MOSES, 15). We are indeed reminded of the manner of E ; but there is nothing in common with E2's doctrine of the universal nature of Yahwe's gift of prophecy as expressed in 11:24b-30. The reference to Miriam in Dt. 24:9 is not clear. It is difficult to see how Miriam's punishment was a warning for Israel to observe the orders of the Levites in the case of an outbreak of leprosy. The difficulty in the reference, implying a discrepancy in the traditions, suggests that Nu. I.c. has been pretty thoroughly revised by Rp (the seven days seclusion v. 15 reminds one of the Levitical enactment, Lev. 13:5). 2

From these few notices we can obtain but a bare idea of the figure of Miriam. She first appears in E (so probably also Aaron), and it is noteworthy that the only reference to her in the prophetical writings is made by a writer who lived about the time of E2 and names 'Moses, Aaron, and Miriam' as the forerunners to redeem Israel (Mi. 6:4, see, however, MICAH [BOOK], 4-5). To about the same age belong the oldest narratives which mention HUR (1), an equally obscure figure, whom tradition connected with Miriam. 3

It may be asked here whether Aaron and Miriam were not originally represented as members of the family of Jethro ? The sudden appearance of Aaron in Horeb (Ex. 4:27 E) seems to suggest that he already lived in the neighbourhood ; whilst, on the other hand, the narrative in Ex. 2:1-10, which seems to treat Miriam as living in Egypt, does not necessarily militate against the view that Aaron and Miriam were brother and sister respectively of Zipporah the wife of Moses. It may also be conjectured that the well-known branch of Levitical Merari derived its name, or traced its descent, from the prophetess 'Miriam' (ana, re) ? Cp GENEALOGIES, 7 [v.], MERARI.

2. Son (or daughter) of Jether (cp JETHER, 1), and BITHIAH (q.v. ), named in a Judaean-Calebite genealogy, 1 Ch. 4:17 (so Ki. after LXX, MT obscure ; fj.at.wv [BA], fjiueup [mooeoor] and /napu [maroo] in a doublet [L]). The coincidence is remarkable ; was there a tradition associating Moses and the other characters of the Exodus with the Calebites? Cp MOSES.

It is true the reading 'Miriam' is not convincingly supported by LXX;* but the tradition (accepted and amplified by the Targ.) may not be wholly late. Distinct traces of a Calebite element have been suspected in portions of JE's narrative of the Exodus, 5 and a close connection between Calebites, Kenites, etc., is borne out by a comparison of the distribution of the proper names (see GENEALOGIES, 5, 7 [v.]). S. A. C.

1 See NUMBERS, 2.

2 We cannot be quite certain that Dt. I.c. is original - directions regarding leprosy are wanting in JE. It is just possible that Miriam alone belonged to the original narrative in Nu. 12:1. The exceptional order of the names in Nu. 12:1 may be taken to suggest that Aaron's name has been added. LXX{L}, on the other hand, following the usual custom, gives Aaron the priority.

t His wife (so Jos. Ant. iii. 24), or mother (Targ.).
  • LXX{BA} suggests the reading Maon, which Cheyne prefers.

5 See Exodus 1., 5-6., KADESH, 3.


RV Mirmah (HKnp, -'deceit' ?, 74; ijma^ia fl!], napjua [A], -/xia [L]), a name in a genealogy of Benjamin (</. ., Q, ii. (3), 1 Ch. 8:10 t, probably from Jerahmeel (Che.). See JQR. 11 108 (6).


Egyptian mirrors consisted of a disc of polished bronze, though the bronze might be covered with a varnish of gold and have a handle of wood, ivory, or bronze, which was often ornamented with a statuette. Such hand-mirrors were indispensable for the toilette of an Egyptian lady, and we find them referred to in Ex. 38:8, as used by the women who performed service in the Tent of Meeting, and, according to a traditional but surely erroneous opinion, in Is. 323. In Job 37:18 the sky (firmament) is compared to a metal mirror. In Wisd. 7:26 wisdom is called an unspotted mirror of the working of God. In the Greek Ecclus. 12:11 a mirror is somehow brought into connection with the malice of an enemy.

Whether it is worth while to speculate as to the possible meaning of the Greek translator, may be doubted ; see RV, which gives an alternative rendering for the last clause of the verse, and cp Edersheim. The Cairo Hebrew text gives, 'He to him (the enemy) as one that revealeth a mystery' (Schechter and Taylor, 25). In 1 Cor. 13:12 ev alviynart ( in a riddle ) seems to be a gloss on Si eo-oTrrpov ; see RIDDLE.

In 1 Cor. 13:12 the imperfect spiritual knowledge of the present life is likened to the imperfect representation of objects in an ancient metal mirror ( 'through a glass' should be 'by means of a mirror' - see below). Not so Ja. 1:23-24 Here 'the perfect law, the law of liberty' is compared to a bright, polished mirror, which really shows a man what are the points in his outward appearance which need correction. Lastly, in 2 Cor. 3:18 Christians are compared to mirrors, inasmuch as they reflect the glory of Christ. The writer doubtless has in his mind circular discs with ornamental handles such as were known in Greek as well as in Egyptian society.

As to the words and phrases,

1. p^j, gillayon, Is. 3 23 (AV 'glass', RV 'handmirror' ) should probably not be reckoned. Tradition is not consistent. Vg. Tg. favours mirrors ; but <E> (SuuJMvij AaKhjciKd) suggests transparent, gauze-like dresses, and Peiser, comparing Bab. gulinu, holds, perhaps correctly, that some unknown garment is meant (see DRESS, i [2]).

2 - ItNIC. 'mar'eh' (x/nNIi to see ) Ex. 388 (<B KCLrompov) Job 37 18 (<B opao-is).

3. H&owTpov, Ecclus. 12:11, Wisd. 7:26, 1 Cor. 13:12, and Ja. 1:23. The classical Greek word is Karonrpov [katoperon] (^Esch. Ag. 839). Hence <c<xT07TTpi ecr#cu in 2 Cor. 3 18. Compare Mayor on Ja. 1 23 and Spiegel, nC on 2 Cor. I.e. ; but cp Heinrici s note on the passage, where the older rendering (AV, RVi HT-) is supported. Certainly Philo (1 107) uses KaTOTrrpi tJecrCai in the sense of beholding some thing in a mirror.


( M [e]lCAHA[BAL]).

1. 1 Esd. 9:44 = Neh. 8:4 MISHAEL, 2.

2. Song of Three Children, 6:6 = Dan. 1:7, etc. MISHAEL, 3.


pl^ EH ; TO KPAT<MWMA[]. AMA0[B], OyU. TO Kp. [A], fortis [Vg.]), according to EV of Jer. 48:1 a chief city of Moab. So Rashi and Kimhi. No such place, however, is known. Moreover, the Hebrew, which has the article, means 'the high fort' (so RVmg) ; but if we render thus the fem. verbs are peculiar, and the parallel clauses contain undoubted names of places. Not improbably we should read v. 16 thus : 'Woe unto Nebo ! it is laid waste ; Kiriathaim is put to shame and dismayed'.

The point is that ajtpan HB"3i1 resembles p3tJT13 13ETI- These words, which occur in v. 2, were probably written too soon by the scribe, and, as usual, not cancelled ; corruption naturally followed, nnm therefore belongs to D mp .VIS 1 ?:- The suggestion is new, but has many parallels. T. K. C.


(W"P ; AA[e]iCAHA [BNAL], but in Lev. MICA^AI [BA]). The name may have been explained 'Who is what God is' (see 39 ; Gray, HPN 165) ; cp MICHAEL. P's names, however, are so often (in our opinion) distortions of ancient ethnic or tribal names that we may (see below) reasonably assume this to be so here, and even connect the presumed underlying name with the icW; see SALMAH, and cp SHALLUM, MESHALLEMIAH, MESHULLAM.

1. A Kohathite, son of Uzziel and nephew of Amram ( = Jerahmeel), Ex. 6:22 ("A O m.) Lev. 104 (both P). The name corresponds to the Simeonite name Shemuel, b. Ammihud ( = Jerahmeel), Nu. 34 20.

2. One of Ezra's supporters (see EZRA ii., 13 [_/".] ; cp i. 8, ii. 16 [5], ii. .15 We), Neh.8 4 =iEsd.!) 44 , EV MISAEL. The next name is MALCHIJAH, originally perhaps a distortion of Jerahmeel.

3. One of the companions of Daniel, also called MESHACH (y.z-.), Dan. 1:6 etc. See DANIEL.

4. See MICHAEL, 8. T. K. c.


AV Misheal (SL""p, Josh. 19:26, MAACA [B], AAACAY [A], MACAA [I-]; 21 3 o, BACGAAAN [B], MACAAA[A], MICAAA[I-]; once MASHAI., 7K13, i Ch. 674[59] MAACA [B], MACAA [ A "] MAClA [E]), a town in Asher, wrongly described in OS ( 280 36 139 21) as near Carmel, which is excluded by the right translation of Josh. 19:26. Perhaps the Mi-Sa-'a-ra of the list of Thotmes III., which occurs immediately before 'A-k-sap or Achshaph (\VM\1, As. n. Eur. 181 ; cp ^ > / J < 2 5 4 6).


(D^ ; rp; MGCCAAM [B], MICAAA [A], MecOAM [L]), a Benjamite of the b'ne Elpaal (see BENJAMIN, 9, ii. ft); iCh. 8i2f; perhaps the same as Meshullam in v. 17. See JQR 11 103 [ i].


(IflOE p ; MACMA [HAL]). A tribal name, perhaps to be read ycy (Josh. 15:26), the duplicated D [m] being due to the influence of the name Mibsam, which precedes Mishma in all the lists. See SHEMA. The name Jebel Misma near Teima (see TEMA), however, invites comparison (see Di. ).

1. A son of Ishmael (Gen. 25;14 ; nacr^ai [Z>EL] ; 1 Ch. 1:30 : papa [15*], juacrena [L]) ; also

2. A son of Simeon (i Ch. 425). Cp SIMEON. T. K. C.


(HSpP tp), a Gadite warrior; i Ch. 12:10 (MACGMMANH [B], -eMANNH [N], -CA- [I-]- MACMA [A], TIE *? [Pesh.]). See DAVID, n, n.


See LAW LITERATURE, 23, and the Introduction to the present work, p. xxiii.


(rUt EH ; sec COLLEGE ; has //a<re//(>)a in 2 K. ; /xaaffaccu [B], /j.effai>ai [A], /maacrevva. [L] in 2 Ch. ; rr)S Sfvrtpas in Zeph. [cp rr; 5ei<repwcm Sym. in 2 Ch.]), a part of Jerusalem, 2K.22i4 = 2 Ch.3422 Zeph. 1 10, RV" 1 ?-. So perhaps Neh. 11:9 (Rodiger in Ges. Thes., Buhl), though EV gives 'Judah the son of (has-) Senuah was second over the city' ('D, as in 1 Ch. 15:18 etc.). There is, however, we believe, reason to think that mc D TyrrSj? should be rut^n Vi rrVy (just as nae Cn elsewhere should be mr n), so that the passage should read 'and Judah, a native of the old city, was over the old city'. See COLLEGE, JERUSALEM, 23. T. K. c.


(UWBn ; HMACARCIM [B]. -N [A], MACepe6l [L]), a post-exilic family of Kirjath-jearim ; 1 Ch. 2:53+. See SHOBAL.


pEpp), Ezra 22 RV, AV MizpAR = Neh. 7 i Mispereth. See MIZPAR.


(D P niSl ^ P), a point in Sidonian territory to which Joshua chased the Canaanites after the battle of Merom, Josh. 11:8([JE] ; MACepCON [B], MACped>COG-MA.eiM [A], -MAlfl [F vid ], MACpe- 4)0)6 MAIN [L]). and which a later writer regarded as the ideal western boundary of the northern hill-country, and apparently as the limit of the Sidonian territory (Josh. 13:6 [D 8 ], MAcepe6/V\eM4>u>NMAl/v\ [B], MA- cepe<t)U>9 MA[e]lM [AL]). Guerin identified it with 'Ain Muserfe, at the S. foot of the Ras en-Nakura, N. of Achzib (see LADDER OF TYRE) ; but this is too far from Sidon. Apparently the place was well-known ; we have therefore to see if we cannot emend the text so as to justify this impression. In Josh. 13:4 we have elsewhere (see MEARAH) found mention of Zarephath which belongs to the Zidonians. The same name is probably intended here. We may either read o nsi:> l for o"D nisitra, or follow Sym. (/^aarpedtud rrjs dirk BaXdffcrris-) in reading, for o O. D D, 'westward', corresponding to nmiD. 'eastward'. In the latter case the name of the place is Misrephoth, or rather Masrephoth. The former view is preferable (cp ZAREPHATH). We may illustrate by Judg. 6:17, where the true reading probably is,

Asher dwelt toward the coast of the sea
And abode by the Zarephathites. 3

We need not therefore compare Ar. musraf"", 'a lofty place' (Di. ), nor explain D'D, 'hot springs' (Kimhi. ) It should be noted, however, that the original story of the war with Jabin may have placed the scene of it in the S. of Palestine (see SHIMRON) ; JITS = 'Zidon', and ii^D 'Missur' are sometimes confounded (cp ZAREPHATH), so that a southern Zarephath may originally have been meant in Josh. 11:8. T. K. C.


(AeTTTOlsi), Mk. 12:42, Lk. 12:59, 21:2+. See PENNY, 2-4.


RV Mithkah (H^D; MATCKKA [B], M&6- [AF], MATTCKAO]). a stage in the wandering in the wilderness, Nu. 33:28-29 See WILDERNESS OF WANDERING.


an improbable gentilic in 1 Ch. 11:43. See JOSHAPHAT, i.


(JTnnp, 'from [or, to] Mithra [the sun-god] given' ? cp Mithrabouzanes [see SHETHAR- BOZNAI], and in Aram. HE iinnD, "in"inO, MlGpA- A&THC [BA]; cp Herod. 1:110 MITRAAATHC and MlSpAAATec borne by Pontic kings; Ml6plA&THC [L] so Jos. Ant. xi. 1 3).

1. The treasurer (n3T3) of Cyrus who handed over the temple treasures to SHESHBAZZAR (Ezra 1 8, ju.iSpi- [B-bA])= i Esd. 2:11, Mithridates, RV Mithradates 0*ifyu. [BA]).

2. A Persian official, temp. Artaxerxes, mentioned with BISHLAM, and others, Ezra 4 7 = 1 Esd. 2 16 EV as above (jjnOpa- [B*Aa], jouflpt- [B-bA*vid.]).


1. Hebrew terms.[edit]

It will be convenient under this heading to notice the priestly head-dresses of the Hebrews, postponing to TURBAN [q.v.] further remarks concerning the head-dresses worn by other classes. In Judith 4:15 'mitre' (Kidapis [kidaris]) is used of the head-covering worn by all priests in common ; but in i Macc. 10:20 it is called simply 'crown' ((rrec/xxi os [stephanos]) ; according to the older Hebrew usage the misnepheth (nsjxo) of the high priest is carefully distinguished from the migba'ah (nyajo) of the ordinary priests, a distinction which is followed in EV. 4

These two words (both only in P or Ezek.) are practically the only terms which need consideration ; on the occasional employ ment of pe'er (-|Nj3) and saniph (p js), see TURBAN.

1. nyajD, migba'ah (Ex. 28:40, 29:9, 39:28 [with "IKS] 5 Lev. 8:13, Ki SapiUBAFL]), AV 'bonnet', RV 'head-tire', the head-dress worn by the sons of Aaron. It was very probably of a conical shape (cp JT33, 'cup', also J7313, jnip, 'helmet' ), and resembled, we may suppose, the well-known conical cap of the Assyrians and Babylonians, 6 and

2. nwxp, misnepheth (Ex. 28439, Lev. 16:4, Ezek. 21:26 [21:31]), KiSapts (Ex. 28:37, 29:6, 39:28, 7:31, Lev. 8:9, utrpa. [metra]), EV 'mitre', the head-covering of the high priest (see also Ezek., I.c., where AV 'diadem' ). RV njJ- prefers 'turban', which is supported by the verb f)3S, 'to wind in a coil' ; cp *] 3S, and see TURBAN.

1 may be a repeated fragment of

2 In Josh. 13:6, however, Symm. reads vSaT

3 For rmpD read q nBIS (Crit. Bib.).

4 So at Hierapolis in Syria a wiAos [pilos] was worn by the ordinary priests ; but the head of the high priest Tiapr) xpvae jj di/aecT<u [tiare chrusee anadthetai] (Lucian, de Syr. Dea, 42).

5 LXX{B} seems to have transposed nS3iD and nj;3JD S- The pi. KiSapet? naturally refers to the ordinary head-dress (of which there were many) rather than to that of the high priest (cp Sinker in Smith s Diet. Christ. Ant., s.v. Mitre ).

6 Cp also the old Italian Pileus, etc., and see Di.-Rys. on Ex. 28 37 40.

7 See n. 2 above.

2. Evidence of Josephus.[edit]

The distinction referred to above does not appear to have held good in the time of Josephus, who applies the term 8d2w[e3 = misnepheth) to the head-dress of all priests (cp also Voma, 7s). In his day it appears that they wore (upon the occasion of sacrifices) a circular cap (TriXos [pilos]), not conical in shape (ajcwpos [akunos]), covering only about half of the head, and somewhat resembling a crown ( arftydvri [stephane]). It was made of thick linen swathes doubled round many times and sewed together, surrounded by a linen cover to hide the seams of the swathes, and sat so close that it would not fall off when the body was bent down (Ant. iii. 73 ).

The high priest, too, wears cap (TriAos [pilos]), which was the same in construction and figure with that of the common priest ; but above it there was another, with swathes of blue, embroidered, and round it was a golden crown (ore ^apos [stephanos]), polished, of three rows ((rre ^ai/os XP"* * * ni Tpi<TTi\iav), ne above another, out of which rose a cup of gold, which resembled the calyx of the herb traK^apov (the Greek hyoscyamus ; see Low, no. 326). After a laborious description, in which he compares the shape of the herb to a poppy (cp turban, Ital. tulipano, Eng. tulip), Josephus goes on to add that of this ( TOVTOV) a crown (<TTe <j>a> os [stephanos]) was made reaching from the nape of the neck to the temples. This e^ieAt s ( 'for so the calyx may be called' ), however, did not cover the forehead (Ant. iii. 7 6).

In his earlier work (BJ\. 5j) Josephus gives an account of the high priest's head-covering, which can scarcely be reconciled with the preceding. In BJ (I.c.) the high priest wears a linen rtdpa [tiara], tied with a blue band, which was encircled by a golden fillet (err^avos). upon which were engraved the 'sacred characters' (ie/xt ypdyu/uara), consisting of four 'vowels' (tpuvrjevra). In Ant. (I.c.), on the other hand, the divine name is engraved upon a golden plate (reXa/awc, Lat. vers. lamina; cp below), which was set upon the forehead (tepotj ypdfj./j.a<ri TOV 6eov TTJV irpoffrjyopiav ^TriTfTytTj/u^os tffTi). 1

To this we may add the description of Jerome (/?/. Ixir ., ad Fabiolani) : Quartum genus est vestimenti, rotundum pileolum, quale pictum in Ulyxi conspicimus, quasi sphara media sit divisa, et pars una ponatur in capite : hoc Greed it nostri Tidpav, nonnulli galerum vacant, Hebrai Misnepheth : non habet acumen in summo, nee totum usque ad comam caput tegit ; sed tertiam partem afronte inopertam relinquit : atque ita in occipitis vitta constrictum est : ut non facile labatur ex capite. The lamina aurea is placed super pileolum.. . . ut in fronte vita hiacynthina constringatur.

From the description of Jos. in BJ, it seems not improbable that we have to think of a head-covering the lower part of which is encircled by a fillet or diadem thus closely resembling the royal Persian Khshatram. This was a cap not conical in shape, which, swelling slightly as it ascended, terminated in a ring or circle projecting beyond the lines of the sides. Round it, probably near the bottom, was worn a fillet or band the diadem proper blue spotted with white (Rawlinson, Anc. Man. 8204 n. with illustration); see DIADEM. The crown with three rows in Jos. Ant. (I.c.) does not seem to admit of any explanation at present, though Babylonian seals may be suggestive. Golden crowns, - however, were worn by the sacerdotes provinciates (Ter- tullian, de Idolatr. 18), and in Grecian states the superior priests are called ffred)avTj(f>6poi (cp Di.-Rys., i.e.).

1 The crown survived till the days of Origen, Reland, dt Spot. Temfili, 132. Cp Jos. Ant. viii. 3s: 19 it <nt$6,vr\ ets $\y tov 0(bv Mtoixnljs iypatjjc /ou a %v icai SiefjifLvev a.\pi nijo-St nijs Tj^if pos.

2 [Or, perhaps, 'taboo, devoted to Yahwe', cp CLEAN, i.)

3 So. according to the Boraitha Kidd.6da, King Jannai (?Jann<eus) was advised -jyy pas? }"S3 (the Pharisees) (quoted from REJ35 [1897] 218).

3. P's description.[edit]

When we turn to P's account of the high priest's misnepheth in Ex. 28:36-38, it seems that it was made of fine linen, and probably was folded many times round the head (according to the Talm. it contained 16 cubits). Its distinctive feature was the sis (px), the golden plate (TreroXos [petalos]. lamina [Vg.]), with its sacred inscription, 'holy to Yahwe' 2 (mrr 1 ? trip), which was fastened upon the forehead. 3

We know nothing of the size of the high priest s frontlet, nor is it clear how it was attached to the turban. There was a blue thread which went round the plate and was knotted behind ; but the texts leave it uncertain whether the thread passed on the inside or outside of the plate (cp Ex. 28:36-37 with 39:31). It seems the more probable that it passed on the inside, as otherwise the inscription would have been partially covered. It is likely that the frontlet did not reach to the lower edge of the turban, and that it extended lengthwise only from temple to temple.

When Josephus (Ant. iii. 76) speaks of the 'sacred letters' with which the sis was inscribed, he refers probably to the archaic characters, such as were employed to write down the divine name even in post-biblical times (e.g. , in the recovered fragment of Aquila ; l Burkitt, Fragments of Aquila}.

The symbolical meanings given to this frontlet need not be recapitulated (cp, e.g., Philo, K/Y. Mas. 673 a); that it was originally understood in a mystic sense appears from Ex. 28:38. It may be of interest to add that, according to the Talmud, it was two fingers in breadth.

The sis is otherwise called nezer (TNI), crown, or diadem (see CROWN, 2); cp the renderings of sis in the Pesh. and Ar. versions, which may, however, have been influenced by a recollection of the Gk. ffT<j>a.vrj<j>6pos [stephanephoros]; see above, 2 (end).

4. The meaning of sis.[edit]

The precise meaning of sis is uncertain. The view

  • (a) that it was a burnished metal plate, though commonly accepted, is devoid of philological support ;

a more plausible meaning would be 'flower' or 'bud' (cp Is. 40:6-7, Ecclus. 43:19, see FRINGES, LOCKS), which suggests

  • (b) a flower-like ornamentation, and
  • (c), a garland, and so a fillet or diadem.

In favour of b (which was the view, long ago, of Bishop Horsley), we have the description of Josephus (Ant. iii. 76, above 2), and, on the analogy of the suggested origin of the golden CANDLESTICK (q.v., 3, col. 647), it would be tempting to find in the symbol a survival of nature- worship. As regards the third view (c) - which virtually identifies the sis with the nezer - the chief support is to be found in such a passage as Is. 28:1 (probably of the end of the 8th cent. B. c. ), where sis stands in parallelism with atarah (mtjy), 'crown', and apparently denotes a chaplet or garland. 2 On this view, the misnepheth was probably encircled with a fillet or diadem - the evolution from garland to diadem is easy - agreeing with the representation in Jos. BJ 5:5:7, and with the Persian custom already referred to ( 2). Finally, early tradition supports the conventional view a, and if it be accepted, it may be plausibly held that the inscribed plate worn upon the forehead is a direct descendant of primitive flesh-cuttings, and a simple varia tion of the totaphoth (see CUTTINGS, 7, FRONTLETS).

The view of Jos. Ant., I.c. which distinguishes the TeAa/awi/ [telamoon] from the o-re ^ai/os [stephanos] seems to find support in the evidence cited in n. 3, col. 3156, and n. i below, and was apparently held by Ben Sira, Jerome, Philo, and the Pseudo-Aristeas. 3 From the discrepant accounts of Jos. it is obvious that the form of the mitre varied from time to time. Only on this assumption can we understand the statements in P. In Ex. 29:6 the nezer is (as we should expect) placed upon the mitre, and this, too, is the position of the sis in Ex. 39:30-31, Lev. 8:9. But in Ex. 28:36+. the sis is both on the mitre (cp c above), and on Aaron's forehead (cp a above). These contradictory statements are evidently the result of a conflate text, for a satisfactory solution of which the accessible evidence is insufficient.

1 Did the inscription originally bear only the name mrr [yahweh]? cp Isid. Orig. 29 21 (petalum, aurea lamina in fronte pontificis quae nomen Dei tetragrainttiaton Hebraicis litteris habebat scriptum), and Jos. BJ v. 67.

2 In Ecclus. 40:4 the wearing of the rp^ and ps (trrtyavos [BNAC], corona) typifies the man of high estate. Is the refer ence to priestly or royal authority? In the former case we may infer that the high priest s characteristic ornament could be called variously pj, rnay, r 1U, and in the latler case we should find an interesting allusion to the sovereign s imperial head-gear, with its distinctive fillet. For the use of *] JS to denote a royal or priestly head-dress, see TURBAN.

3 In Ecclus. 45:12 the Heb. reads psl nSJXDl S JTO IS may pnp .... For 01 S J/D we must certainly read Q VjTO, S PO is out of place and has been already mentioned in v. 8. The sis, here, is quite distinct from the rnoy which appears to correspond to P's -j7j. Jer. Ep. Ixiv., ad Fabiolam : habet cidarim et nomen Dei portat in fronte, diademate ornatus est regio. Philo (de Mose, ed. Mangey, 2152): \p\xro\iv fie ireVaAoi , liio-arci crTc ^ara? efiij^uovpyeiTO . . . /Mi rpa fie UTT aurb, rpv JKTJ i/raiieti Ke<f>aAr) TO Trera^ov . irpb? fie Kai Ki fiapts (carea/ceva^eTO . jctfiapet yo-P ot rwr* eoitur /3a<7iAets ai>Tt fitafiiJ^aTO? eiw#a<ri Xprj<r0ai. Aristeas (ed. Thackeray, apud Swete, Introd. to OT Gr.), p. 536 : eVi fie TTJS Kec/xxAirj? e\ei ri)v Ae-vo/xe irjc KiSapiv ejrt fie rauTTjs TT\V <i/ii>r)TO(/ /nirpav, TO ca0r)yiao>eVoi [cp_ Lev. 89] /Sacri Aeioi/, CKTVTTOVV eiri TreraAa) xpvtrui ypdfj,fjia.cnt> ayi ois TOU eov . KO.TCL fjiftrov TWV o^>pvwp fiorj i

5. The mitre in Christian times.[edit]

In the Christian church the ecclesiastical head-dress is styled mitra and infula. The former, being originallycharacteristic of the Phrygians, is sometimes called 'Phrygium' by ecclesiastical writers of the Middle Ages (Marriott, Vest. Christ. 220). The infula is the long fillet of heathen priests and vestals. It was also a sacrificial ornament of victims (cp CHAPLET).

Polycrates (see Eus. HE 5:24, cp 3:31, Jer. de Vir. illustr. 45) mentions that John the apostle became a priest, TO TreVa- Xof irf<f>opK<as [to petalon pethorekos]. James, the brother of Jesus, according to Epiphanius (Hzr. 294), was permitted to wear TO jre rotAcc en-i rijs Kei/xzA-rjs. The survival of the term TreVaAoi [petalon] is of interest, even if it is not to be understood literally.

Gregory Nazianzen (f 389 A.D. ) uses /a Sapts [kidaris] of the priestly cap (Orat. 104); Jer. (Ep. 64 n. 13), on the other hand, employs tiara. According to Sinker (Diet. Christ. Ant., s.v. Mitre ), there are no real grounds for supposing that an official head-dress was generally worn by Christian ministers during the first nine or ten cen turies after Christ.

The mitre is not even now a badge of order, but only of dignity ; not only are there mitred abbots, but in certain privileged chapters all the members on certain festivals wear mitres.

For the usages in the church in general cp Bunz, Herzog-Plitt, A ES 44^ It is interesting to note that in the early Abyssinian church upon high occasions a turban (tnatcmteniia) is worn along with a metal crown.

i- A. ( 1,3); s. A. c. (2,4, 5).


(MiryAHNH, Acts20i 4 Ti. WH ; in classical authors, and on coins, MyTiAHNH). the chief city of the island of Lesbos, to which in the Middle Ages it gave its own name, as now in its Turkish form, Midullu; it is itself now called Kastro, 'castle', from the Genoese castle which occupies the old acropolis. Its position is accurately marked in Acts, as midway between Alexandria Troas and Chios, viz. , one day s run of Paul s vessel from either point. Mytilene lies on the SE. coast of Lesbos, on a peninsula which was once an island protecting two small but excellent har bours. The southern basin held fifty warships, and was closed by a chain ; the larger and deeper northern basin, protected by a mole, was reserved for merchant men (Strabo, 617) ; a narrow canal connected the two (Paus. viii. 30:2 ; Diod. 13:77). The roadstead, 7mi. N. of the SE. end of the island, is good in summer (hence Paul s vessel in April lay off the town all night), but in winter is exposed to the violent SE. and NE. winds. The city had from early times an extensive commerce, e.g. , with Egypt as early as 560 B.C. (Herod. 2178).

In the domain of literature Mytilene gained undying fame as the home of Alcaus and of Sappho (SaMfjiacnor TL xpTJ/oca, Strnbo, I.e.). Its situation and buildings are often praised (Strabo, I.e. ; Cic. Leg. Agr. 240, urbs et natura ac situ et discriptione aedi- ficiorum et pulchritudine in primis nobilis ; Hor. Ep. i. 11 17 ; Mytilene pulchra ; Vitr. 1 6). Mytilene, therefore, like Rhodes, became a fashionable resort for Romans compelled to withdraw from public life (Cic. Ad. Fam. vii. !i 5, exsuleni esse non incom- modiore loco, quam si Rhodum me aut Mytilenas contulissem; cp id. Ad Fam. iv. "4; Ad Att.v.\\f,; Tac. Ann. 14 53). In Paul s time it was a free city (Pliny 7/^639, Libera Mitylene, annis M D potens), and claimed the title vpiarr] Ae <r/3ou (see Marq.-Momms. RSin. Staatsverw. 1 345).

Description in Tozer, The Islands of the Aegean, 134 f.

W. J. W.




(TTVP "I?1 ; [ AT TO] OROyc MIKpOy : [ /l \ monte minima [Jer. ]), Ps. 426 [7]. It being assumed that the text is sound, Mizar has been thought to be the name either of one of the lower hills of Hermon (soGASm. HG 477; cp Che. Ps. ( ; Kirkpatrick, Duhin), or of a mountain in the Gileadite ranges (Del., assuming the psalm to be Davidic), and modern names have been indicated which somewhat resemble Mis'ar (GASm., 1 I.e. ; Tli. L.-bL, 1882, p. 45, see Now.-Hupf. Psalmen 1604). But the conjunction of a little-known hill or mountain with such a famous mountain-range as Hermon is most improbable, and the phrase little mountain - (iyxo in) has, therefore, been taken to be a designation of Zion, which, though outwardly insigni ficant, to the eye of faith was far grander than Hermon, because Yahwe dwelt thereon (43s; cp 6815 [i6]/. ). In this case we must explain either (Smend, Baethgen) 'I think upon thee (O God !) far from the land of the Jordan and of the Hermons, far from the little mountain' (i.e. , though an exile from the land of Israel), or (Hitz. ; Che. O/ J s. 115 3167. ; We. ), 'I think upon thee now that I have reached the land (or 'above [all] the land', as We.) of the Jordan and the Hermons (i.e. , the neighbourhood of the most famous sources of the Jordan), thou little mountain' (omitting the initial Q in ina as due to dittography). Neither of these views, however, is satisfactory. There must be much deeper corruption than critics have suspected.

The passage (v. 6 [7]) must be treated, as a whole, from the point of view of a keen textual criticism. Probability is all that can be reached ; but if we take this passage with others, in which a similar result seems almost forced upon us by criticism, the degree of probability may be considered to be high. Read therefore -

Preserve me, [O Yahwe] my God, from the tribe of the Arabians,
From the brood of the Jerahmeelites [rescue thou me].

The last word, ^aSsni i- s restored from 43:1, where nearly the same restoration of the distich is required. nj;i !3 "ins is a corruption of a dittographed D ^NCnV jmc- See Che. Ps.P), ad loc.

On Pss. 42-4:i 44 T20 137 140, in all of which the Jerahmeelites (i.e., the Edomites), and in some the Arabians, are referred to, according to a plausibly emended text, as enemies of the Judah- ites or Judaeans; see PSALMS, 28 ; cp also LAMENTATIONS.

T. K. C.

1 Names with the radicals mentioned by Smith are not uncommon in Palestine (e.g., Wady Za'arah, S. of Banias).

2 Cp Gen. 1920, where Zoar is called lyi C. 'a little thing' ; but the text may be corrupt (see Crit. Bib.).

3 In v. 5 6 sup ras B v d., fi<z<nj<|>aTi A v ( l-; A has v. 6 -r, v. 12 -a and in ~>. n A orn. In ->. 16 A has /uao-rji/ia.


(HSypn, the watchtower ; cp MIZPEH ; MACCH(J>A [BNAFL]).

i. A hill-town of Benjamin, Josh. 18:26, where it is called Mizpeh (yiiacrcr^a [B], /uacr^a [A]), near Gibeon (Jer. 41:12) and Jerusalem (1 Macc. 3:46), and, if Eusebius and Jerome may be followed, also near Kirjath-jearim (OS 27897 18814). ASA fortified it, 1 K. 15:22 (rr\v ffKoiridv [BAL]), and Gedaliah the governor adopted it as his place of residence, 2 K. 25:23 ( /j.a<rcrr]<()a() [B]) Jer. 40:10 (/j-acrri^a [NQ], but /j,aa-ffrj<f>a.l) [Q] in v. 6 and Q mg- 41:1 /j.acrri(f>a.6 [(<>] r. 8). Into the great cistern constructed there by Asa, Ishmael, legend said, threw the dead bodies of the seventy pilgrims whom he had murdered after slaying the governor (Jer. 41:7-9). The hill on which Mizpah stood seems to have been regarded as sacred. The narrative in Judg. 21 (see v. 1) maybe partly, and those in 1 S. 7:3-12 (fj.a.crcn]<pa9 [B] and A in v. 7 3 ) 10:17-24 (fj.a.crr)<j)a [A]) even altogether, untrustworthy from a historical point of view (cp We. Prol.W, 258) ; but they would hardly have contained references to the sanctity of Mizpah if there had not been a holy place there from very early times (cp Bu. Ki. Sa. 185). According to Jerome it was one of the places where the ark rested ( Quaest. Heb. on 1 S. 7:2; so also Eus. OS 278:97). and - a more valuable authority - 1 Macc. 3:46 describes it as containing an ancient Israelitish place of prayer, such a spot perhaps as there was on the Mount of Olives (2 S. 16:32, RV). It was at this holy place that faithful Israelites gathered when the Syrians had profaned the temple (1 Macc. 3:46, 3:54). The thrilling account may illustrate Ps. 74 (Che. OPs. 94), even if we regard this psalm as pre - Maccabaean (see PSALMS, 8 [b], i7/., 28 [v.]). We also hear of Mizpah as an administrative centre under the Persian rule (Nell. 87 [/j.a.ff<f>a (L), BXA om. v. 7] 19 [/xacr^e (BA), -a (L), fj.afj.<pf (N)|). It was Robinson who first saw where with most probability its site may be placed (BK I 4 6o) - viz. , on the mountain now called Neby Samwil. This noble height rises 2935 ft. above the sea-level, and commands the most comprehensive view in southern Palestine, including within its range Jerusalem, which is only 4.5 mi. off on the NW. (cp 1 Macc. 3:46, 'over against Jerusalem' ). On a lower hill to the N. lies the village of el-Jib (see GIBEON), which reminds us that the men of Gibeon and of Mizpah worked together on the wall of Jerusalem (Neh. 3:7).

Poel's attempt (Le Sant tuaire de Kirjath-jcaritn, 1894, part ii. chap, i) to show that Gibeon and the town called ham-Mispah were two distinct places on the same sacred hill, to which the name ham-Mispah originally belonged, can hardly be taken seriously.

2. (nsi-sn, Gen. 31:49, Judg. 11:11-34; nsss, Hos. 5:1; ly*?} nssOi Mizpeh of Gilead, Judg. 11:29). A town in Gilead where Jephthah resided ; consecrated in sacred legend, as presented by K, by the compact of Laban and Jacob. It is the RAMATH-MIZPEH of Josh. 13:26, and is most probably to be identified with Penuel - i.e. , the citadel and sanctuary of Salhad - though, to suit the present narrative of JE in Gen. 31:46-54, it is plausible to identify it with Suf, NW. of Jerash (see GILEAD, 4).

3. A 'land' or district (fix), and a 'valley' (nypa), at the foot of Hermon, to the NE. of the waters of Merom, Josh. 11:3 (fj.a<rev/jLai> [B], /j.aaff-rj^)a6 [A]) 8 (/ucKTcrujx [B], /j.affr)Ka<f>a.T F], fj.acr[<r]-r]<f>a [L]). In MT, which is followed by RV, the land is called the 'land of Mizpah' (nsseri) ; but obviously the same region is meant, and we must read in both places either 'Mizpah' (L in both fiaacrTitpa) or 'Mizpeh' (so Bennett, SBOT). In early times this district was inhabited by Hivites, or, according to a necessary correction, Hittites (see Moore, Judges, 81). Probably the Mizpah, or watchtower, was on some hill in one of the valleys of the Upper Jordan above Lake Huleh. Robinson placed it at the mod. Mutalleh, a Druse village, on a high hill, N. of Abil and E. of Nahr el- Hasbany. This, however, seems to be not far enough to the east. Buhl (Pal. 240) suggests the site of the castle on the mountain above Banias called Kal'at es- Subebeh. Certainly the spot well deserves to be called Mizpeh. T. K. c.


or rather [RV] Mispar (ISCO ; MAGYAR [AL]), a leader (see EZRA ii., 8e) in the post-exilic list (ib. ii., 9), Ezra 22 (/v\AAc<\p [B]) = Neh. 7?. MISPERETH (JVlEpp ; MAC4>ep&N [B], MAC<b&pAA [N], MAACct>ApA6 [A])=1 Esd. 5:8, ASPHARASUS (AC- 4>ApACOC [BA]). This last form suggests a connection with Aspadata (maot<) : =a(r7ra5o7-7js (Ctesias) ; so Marq. Fund. 35. Some other names, however, in the same verse favour a connection with Misrephath, another form of Zarephath (?) ; cp HASSOPHERETH.

T. K. c.


(HSXp, i.e., watchtower ; MACCHCpA [BAL]).

i. A town in the lowland of Judah, Josh. 15:38 ffj.aff<f>a [BA], /j.a<rr]<j>a. [L], <f>a.ff/j.a [B a - b "*> ]), mentioned in the same group with Lachish and Eglon. Eusebius records a Maspha or Massema 'in the district of Eleutheropolis on the north' (OSW 279 19). This agrees with the position of Tell es-Safiyeh, which is i\ m. NNW. from Beit Jibrin, and by Van de Velde and Guerin is identified with this Mizpeh (but cp GATH). There was, however, a second Maspha on the way from Eleutheropolis to Jerusalem (Eus. ). Jerome (OSW 139s) fuses the two statements of Eusebius into one.

2. A town of Benjamin, Josh. 18:26 (/j.acrcr7)/j.a. [B], ft.a.ff<t>a. [A]). See MIZPAH, i.

3. (axis nsxc) a place in Moab visited by David in his wanderings; 1 S. 22:3 (/j.acm](f>a [A]). Consistency requires us to suppose the same place to be referred to in v. 5, reading n2i C3 for ,-i-ni a3 (Klo. , Bu. , HPSm., Buhl). The geography of the section, however, is improved if for 3Nia we read m\ D i-e., the N. Arabian Musri (see MIZRAIM, 26), and for HESC, nss;. Adullam is probably a disguise of Jerahmeel, and Hareth a corruption of Kadesh ; we should expect the original of MT's Mizpah of Moab to be Zephath (or Zarephath) of Musri.

4. Mizpeh of Gilead (Judg. 11:29). See MIZPAH, 2.

5. A region by Mt. Hermon (Josh. 11:8). See MIZPAH, 3.

T. K. C.


(DnyO; MGCRAIN [AE] ; ^^f> mes-ren ; AAGpCH, var. MECTpH. and [for the son of Ham] MCPCAIOC, var. MECpAIOC. MCCTpAIOC. MGCpAMOC [Jos.]), or Misraim ; generally the Heb. name for Egypt or Lower Egypt, and hence, according to the prevalent view, represented in Gen. 10 as a son of Ham, as a brother of Cush, and as the father of Pathrusim = Pathros (Gen. 106 [P] 1314 [J] : Gen. 106 M CTpAlM [/>], 13 Mecp&eiM [E] ; /v\eCAp<MM [L in both verses]).

1. Form and meaning of name.[edit]

The termination has been commonly regarded as dual, and as referring to the division of Egypt into Upper and Lower. It is better, however, to regard Misraim as a locative form, developed out of Misram (see especially E. Meyer, GA 1, 42).

This view is rejected by Dillmann and Konig,l but gives the easiest explanation of the facts,

  • (1) that D HSC, Misraim, is twice expressly distinguished from PATHROS (q.v.) or Upper Egypt

(Is. 11:11, Jer. 44:1), and

  • (2) that the collateral form 11SO, Masor, is also (see below) used of Lower Egypt.

It is, moreover, the only view which does justice to the Bab. and Ass. forms. 2 These are Misri (Am. Tab., 2i, etc.), Musur, Musuru, Musri, and (in the Babylonian versions of the inscriptions of Darius) Misir. There is also an old form Missari (Mi-is-sa-ri), which occurs once in a letter from the king of Assyria to the king of Egypt (Am. Tab. 102), while the Mitannite letters favour Masri or Mizirri (Wi. Am. Tab. Glossary, 39*). 3 The form Missari seems to Winckler to suggest -inissor, 11SS, as the right punctuation of the form IIXQ ; the Massoretic pointing masor, "^350, is due to a faulty conjectural interpretation of Masor as fortification or the like (cp Mic. 7 12, (0 and AV). Masor (Missor) is generally recognised only in 2 K. 10:24 (= Is. 37:25) Mic. 7:12, Is. 196. Very possibly, however, ijjj; (11 xs) at one time appeared more frequently in the Hebrew texts. Sometimes it may have been distorted or (see Klo., Che. on Is. 50 19) mutilated by the ordinary causes of corruption ; sometimes it may have been altered into C"1SD V editors, who may perhaps have imagined that they saw a sign of abbreviation after -i^-p. As to the meaning of the name we can be brief. Mizraim Is certainly not aqtue clauste (2 K. 19 24, Vg.), a view which Naville (Smith, Db P)) adopts, with the explanation 'water enclosed in dykes or walls, basins or canals' (cp n. i), nor 'double fortified enclosure' [Ebers, Aeg. u. d. BB. Mos. 1:87), [W. Spiegelberg, Rec. Trav. 20 (1898), 40, attempted an Egyptian etymology me(orz)r, 'fortification, wall', thinking that the origin of Mizraim is to be sought for in the fortifications of the eastern frontier of the Delta, especially at the entrance to GpSHEN. As long as we cannot prove the use of mzr(i) in the wider sense, this theory possesses little probability. Besides, the pronunciation of the Egyptian word is doubtful. W.M.M.]

Misraim, as the extended application of the name Musur (Misir) in Assyrian (see g 211, 2 b) suggests, is most probably an Assyrian appellative = 'frontier-land'. See Hommel, GBA 550, n. 2; "Wi. , AO^ l^^; and below, 2 b, end.

1 Konig's argument against Meyer (Theol. Lit.-blatt, June 19, 1806) is by no means cogent. That the Phoenician mjjo might be a dual form, if there were no special reason to the contrary, may be admitted. But there is such a special reason (see above). Konig s reference (made already by Ges.) to an old Egyptian appellation for Egypt - ta-ui 'the two worlds' (or lands) - is not more relevant than Naville's (in Smith s DBft), 861) to another title of Egypt (common in Ptolemaic times) Kebhui, 'the two basins' (rather 'the two cool, or pleasant, places' ) - and to the references to the two Niles (of Upper and Lower Egypt) in the inscriptions. [Egyptian sacred poetry revels in such allusions to the prehistoric two kingdoms (see EGYPT, 43). Egypt has a double Nile, two classes of temples, etc. But these plays never entered into colloquial Egyptian, hence they can never have influenced the Asiatics. It is even questionable whether the designation 'both countries' (taui or toui) was constructed grammatically as a dual in common parlance after 1600 B.C. - W. M. M.] Jensen's suggestion of DHXD (Z ZWG, 1894, p. 439), which is also rejected by Konig, is, however, not impossible (in the Amarna inscriptions the usual form is Mi-is- ri-i). It had already been made by Reinisch (see Ebers, 1 90) and Friedr. Delitzsch (Par. 309). Cp D^E ?.

2 See Wi. ATUnters. 168-174, esp. 170. and cp Schr. KGF 346 JT ; Del. Par. 308 f[.

3 Cp Msr in Minaean inscriptions, and Ar. Misr(Egyptian-Ar., Masr). Also old Pers. Mudhraya (from Ass. Musur, Musri), and the form Muo-pa ascribed by Steph. Byz. to the Phoenicians (?).

2a. N. Syrian Musri.[edit]

Schrader long ago pointed out (Z.A, 1874, p. 53) that the name Musri in the Assyrian inscriptions did not always mean Egypt. It was left for Winckler, however, to show that there was not only a N. Syrian but also a N. Arabian Musri, and to bring this discovery into relation to OT criticism.

About 1300 B.C. (Shalmaneser I.) and again about 1100 B.C. (Tiglath-pileser I. ) we find the name Musri applied to a state in N. Syria, S. of the Taurus, which also included parts of Cappadocia, Cataonia, and Cilicia, and reached southward perhaps as far as the Orontes (see RPW 1 109 /. ; KB \ 35 ; Rogers, Bab. and Ass. 2 12). In Asur-nasir-pal's time it is called Patin (so Wi. , cp PADDAN-ARAM) ; but under Shalmaneser II. we again hear of a state - it is a very small one - called Musri, which sent auxiliaries to Benhadad at the battle of Karkar. As is pointed out elsewhere (see JEHORAM, 2), this must be the state referred to in 2 K. 7:6 ( 'the kings of the Hittites and the kings of c lSD' ), unless indeed we can believe (as J. Taylor well puts it) 'that the local Egyptian kings would serve as condottieri for Israel' (F.xp. Tl^o6f.}. Such a relation, however, might quite conceivably have been entered into by the kings of the Hittite territory and its neighbourhood. We may even go a step further, and criticise the common interpretation of 1 K. 10:28-29, 2 Ch. 1:16-17. The question is, did the agents of Solomon procure horses and chariots (both for Solomon and - as the text stands - for the Hittite and Aramaean kings) from Egypt or from the N. Syrian land of Musri ? It must be admitted that the critics before Winckler were somewhat credulous. Certainly, it may be assumed that the Egyptians bred horses for their own use. 1 But is it in the least probable that they ever had an export-trade in horses, when we consider the lack of extensive pastures in Egypt ? Now that we know of a N. Syrian and Cilician Musri, we cannot help interpreting the c lXO in 1 K. 10:28, 2 Ch. 1:16, as the name of that region. It would, indeed, be passing strange if, while the Egyptians themselves imported powerful stallions from N. Syria, 2 the Israelites should have imported horses from Egypt. 3 But did Israel import chariots as well as horses from Musri ? Must the cnso of 1 K. 10:29 be the N. Syrian Musri? We know that the Egyptians had the most perfect of chariots. Though in the first instance they had imported chariots from Syria, their workmen soon became independent and improved upon their teachers (see Maspero, I.c., and cp CHARIOT, 5). If we believe that Solomon had close friendly relations with Egypt, we may, if we will, suppose that he procured a few chariots from Egypt as models, 1 and that the compiler of i K. 10:28-29 interwove a tradition respecting the chariots imported from Mizraim (Egypt) with a tradition respecting the import of horses from the N. Syrian Musri (and Kue, or E. Cilicia). The connection of Solomon, however, with Egypt is very disputable ; it was probably with the N. Arabian Musri that he was connected by marriage. Moreover, as we shall see presently, Solomon s agents were not Israelites, but merchants of the Hittites and of Syria. These merchants had of course no dealings with Egypt. The source of supply for Solomon s horses and chariots was the N. Syrian Mu.sri ; not only this district, however, but also the region called Kue, or Eastern Cilicia. mpa in v. 28, as Lenormant (Orig. de I hist.Zg) and Winckler (A T Unt. 174) have pointed out," most probably enfolds this long-lost name (Kue). 3 We know from Herodotus (3:90) that Cilicia was a famous horse-breeding country, and from Ezekiel (27:14) that the Tyrians obtained their horses from Togarmah, at any rate from Asia Minor.

1 See Erman, quoted by Wi. (op cit. 173).

2 See Maspero, Struggle of Nations, 215, with the references.

3 The 'great horses' which Asur-bani-pal (Annals, -J 40 ; KK 2 169) took as booty from the Egyptian city of Kipkip may or may not have been all bred in Egypt. Nowhere is any reference made by Assyrian kings to Egyptian horses as tribute ; the supply would have been insufficient. Asur-bani-pal himself gave chariots and horses to Necho (Annals, 2 14 ; A~2i6j). See HORSE.

The whole passage should possibly run nearly as follows : -

'And the source from which Solomon s horses were derived was Musri, and the king s young steeds used to be fetched from Kue. And a chariot was estimated at 600 pieces of silver. And [ ] pieces of silver [they used to pay] for a young steed to the merchants of the Hittites and of Syria, by whom they were exported'.

With Ruben (JQK 10543) reat n P f r Tip"; tne word should close ->. 28. For "irtD read THD ( sg e Del. Ass. H\VB,s.v. Suhiru ), and for i >rt3 reac TnD3 transferring it to v. 29:6 Omit Njjni an( I SD (Ruben). For p read perhaps r^j and for ^S-j read Svi (Che.).

In 2 K. 7:6 (siege of Samaria) we should also ap parently read CHSS, and explain it of the N. Syrian Musri (see Jerohoram, 2).

2b. N. Arabian Musri.[edit]

We turn to another Musri. It was not, as Schrader (KB 2:21) thought, over the marches towards the Egyptian Musri that Tiglath-pileser appointed Idi-bi'il (see ADHEEL) governor, but over a distinct, though not far distant, Musri in N. Arabia, bordering on Edom. Nor was it in Egypt that Hanunu of Gaza and Yaman of Ashdocl sought refuge from the Assyrians, but in a nearer country, the N. Arabian Musri, which was in Yaman s time under the supremacy of the king of Meluhha (in N. Arabia ; see SINAI, map). Further, the king whom Sargon calls Pir u sar (mat) Musuri was, not the Egyptian Pharaoh (Schr. A ATM, 397), but a N. Arabian king (the next sovereign mentioned is Samsieh, queen of Arabia). This turtan (=tartan), or general, is Sib'e ; he joined Hanun of Gaza, and fled from the field of battle ; he is commonly but incorrectly known as 'So, king of Egypt' (see SO). Now it was only to be expected that some references to this Musri in the OT should become visible to keen eyes. It is with a shock of surprise, however, that we gradually find out how many they are. 4 We are still further startled to hear that there was not only a Musri but also a Kush (Cush) in N. Arabia (see CUSH, 2) ; we find, however, that a flood of light is thrown thereby on a very large group of interesting passages. Caution no doubt is necessary. Winckler s theory, that the belief in the early residence of Israelitish tribes in Egypt arose simply and solely out of a confusion of the N. Arabian with the Egyptian Mu.sri, is at any rate very plausible (see MOSES, 2/. , but cp EXODUS i. ). a And it is in the highest degree likely that, in the original tradition, Hagar ham-misrith (EV 'the Egyptian' ) came not from Egypt but from N. Arabia (see BEER-LAHAI-ROl), and that the Pharaoh (Pir u 7) or Abimelech (Jerahmeel ?) with whom, in duplicate forms of the same story, Abraham and Isaac are brought into connection, was a king of the N. Arabian Musri (see ABIMELECH, GERAR). In the description of the district which Lot chose it is probably Misrim, not Misraim, that should be read, though some will demur to this on account of the interference with the text which Winckler (rightly) allows himself (Gen. 13:10-11). There can hardly be a doubt, too, that ABEL-MIZRAIM [q.v.] originally meant 'Abel in the land of Musri', and that the phrase CHSO ^nj originally meant, not 'the Egyptian Wady', but the 'Wady (or Torrent) of Musri' in N. Arabia (see EGYPT, RIVER OF).

1 More than a few chariots for Palestine would have taxed the resources of the Egyptians too much. They were not rich in timber.

2 Cp Ki. ( Chron. SBOT), Maspero (Struggle of .\ations, 740). Maspero's theory of 1 K. 10:28-29. is improbable.

3 See Schr. KGF 236 ff. ; Tiele, BAG 153 ; cp in i K. <E5 6(xovf and the Hexaplar variant Kiaa. ; L adds <cai K Bafuuncov.

4 The biblical references which follow are partly due to the keen insight of Winckler. Take them altogether, and they seem almost to open up a new stage in OT criticism and history ; but the student will be amply rewarded for the trouble of investigat ing and appropriating even a few of the chief results.

5 It is no drawback to Winckler's originality that an English- man, Dr. C. T. Beke, in 1834 anticipated him as to the general situation of the C TiD of the Exodus (see Exouus, 4 ; MOSES, 6). Though noticed in due time by Ewald, the leading OT scholar of the day, the suggestion produced no impression upon criticism. Internal evidence was not enough ; archaeological data were necessary to complete the proof, or at any rate to enforce a respectful consideration of the hypothesis.

The present writer has sought to show that the land to which Abraham was sent with his son Isaac, according to (Gen. 22, was Musri, not 'Moriah' (see ISAAC, MORIAH), and that Dinhabah (Gen. 36:32), and Pethor, from which Balaam came (Nu. 22:5a) are merely corruptions of Rehoboth (by the river of Musri), and Mezahab and Dizahab corruptions of C "!X2 (Gen. 36:39 ; Dt. 1:1 ; see BELA, MATHED, PETHOR, etc.). So too the family of Jarha traced its origin, no doubt, to a Misrite or Musrite, not to an Egyptian ancestor (see JARHA, JERAHMEEL). The slave left behind by an Amalekite in the story of the capture of Ziklag (1 S. 30:13), and the tall foe of Benaian. who was slain by his own spear in the hand of Benaiah (2 S. 23:21), were also both Musrites. It was the king of Misrim who gave his daughter in marriage to Solomon and conquered Gezer for his son-in-law (1 K. 9:16; see SOLOMON), and Misrim, not Misraim, should be read in 1 K. 5:1 [4:21], 8:65. It was also with the N. Arabian Musri that JEROBOAM [q.v.] was connected through his mother, and there he took refuge from the wrath of Solomon ; and the same country gave a home to another adversary of Solomon (who likewise had a Musrite mother), Hadad the Edomite (see HADAD, 3).

That Musri had close relations with Palestine in later times, we have seen already (story of Hanun and Yaman). The story of Elijah also contains indications of the same important fact. It was probably 'Arabians', not 'ravens', that the original text represented as the friends of Elijah, and the 'brook Cherith' should be the 'wady of Rehoboth' (see CHERITH, RAVEN). A pre-exilic writer too, gives, most probably, a list of districts bordering on N. Arabia as 'sons' of Misrim (not Mizraim) in Gen. 10:13-14, whilst Misrim itself is, according to P, a 'son' of Ham (Jerahmeel). 1 P of course is not himself pre-exilic ; but we can at any rate refer to the prophecies of Isaiah ; Is. 20 in its most original form, and 306 7 a, according to the original meaning, speak of Misrim not of Misraim. (See 'Isaiah', SBOT 98, 102. On 1 K. 14:25, see SHISHAK.)

The N. Arabian Musri is also very probably referred to in Am. 1:9 and 8:9, also, by an archaism, in many other late passages, only a few of which can be mentioned, e.g.. Is. 43:3, 45:14 [SHOT, 140], JoelS [4] 4 19, Hab.3 7 , Lam.42i56, Ps. 00 ii [9] 83s [7] 87 4 1205 an( J> probably, elsewhere in the Psalter (see PSALMS, LAMENTATIONS).

Glancing once more in conclusion at the origin of the form Mizraim, we cannot help seeing how well E. Meyer's view (see i) agrees with the theory adopted above from Winckler. In fact, in a Minasan inscription (Hal. 535) we find the terms Misran and al-Misr used indifferently for the same N. Arabian region (Wi. AOF 337). See especially Winckler, Musri, Meluhha, Main, I. and II. in the Ml G, 1898. It should be noticed in connection with this subject

  • (1) that there are textual phenomena too many to be mentioned here which strongly favour the theory that c iss is often wrongly pointed D nsa ;
  • (2) that historical results are appearing which clear up various obscure parts of the Hebrew historical tradition ; and
  • (3) that there are other ethnics and place-names which have been misread in certain contexts, and which, if correctly restored, illustrate and confirm the view here given respecting C TjD, among which may be especially mentioned axiD for -USD (see MOAB, iii.), out? for DVS (see SHECHEM, and SHECHEM, TOWER OF), pay for p^cy, c-^y for Jerahmeel, Jerahmeelim (see JERAHMEEL, MOSES, 6/1), jnan. rr-o, and ma for roirn, nairn, (see REHOBOTH), niB N for IIB :! (see GESHUR, 2), n^in for &-\p (see SISERA), etc.

It is not necessary to accept all these in order to do justice to the arguments in favour of nisp (USD?) and DHXO ; but it is needful to see that the foundations of Israelite history have to be re-examined, and to realise that we have now fully passed the stage of merely speculative inquiry, and are reaching or have reached that of well-assured methodical investigation. If our general theory is sound, nothing indeed is stranger than the regularity with which scribes make their mistakes, and editors, under the influence of historical theory, their conjectural corrections. T. K. c.

1 According to the view proposed here and in Crit. fii/>., Gen. 10:13-14 should run thus (on vv. 10-12 see NIMROD) - 'And Misrim begat Carmelites, and Meonites, and Baalathites, and Tappuhites, and Zarephathites, and Ziklagites, and Rehobothites, from whence came forth the Pelistim' [to fight with David ; cp 2 S. 21:18-22]. All these are places in S. Judah or on its border ; the substitution of Rehobothites for Caphtorim and of Zarephathites for Pathrusim may specially deserve attention.

2 See the cogent argument of Wi., Musri i (1898), 8 f. It should be noted that Am. 1:10 corresponds with 3:9 where the 'palaces' or 'fortresses' in the land of c ~li p are mentioned. The writer assumes that the capital of Musri was called isO- See AMOS, 9.

3. 'O Tyre and Zidon' (pTXl is) should probably be 'O Missur': N. Arabia is meant. Philistia" (n& Ss) should perhaps be Zarephath, a place and district which were reckoned to the N. Arabian Musri. See ZAREPHATH.

The following illustrative passages from the inscriptions, relative to the N. Arabian Musri and Kus, are taken chiefly from Schrader, KA Tft] :

1. p. 289, /. 73. Sarrani mat Musri, the kings of Musur, mentioned along with the kings of Miluhhi (cp 80, 81).

2. p. 255, I. igjf., and Wi. AOF\. 26. Hanunu of Gaza fled to mat Musri. Cp 396 f. ; the same Hanunu joins Sab- i, who is called siltannu (or turtannu) mat Musri, on which see Wi. AOFi.zd/. Both together march against Sargon at Raphia. In /. 3 of the second inscription pir u Sar mat Musri occurs. Pir'u is not, as Schrader supposed in 1883= Pharaoh, but the name of a N. Arabian king ; he is mentioned with a N. Arabian queen, Samsieh, and a Sabaean, It'amar.

3. p. 398, /. 6 f. ; cp Wi. 27. Sargon advances against Yaman ; who flees ana iti mat Musuri sa pa-at mat Mihihha innabit i.e., towards the district of Musur which belongs" to Meluhha. See ASHDOD.

4. p. 301, /. 23 ; Wi. 27 ; Sar mat Musuri mentioned between Ashkelon and Ekron-and-Meluhha i.e., the N. Arabian region, including, as Wi. contends, the lands of Mujri and Kus.

5. A fragment (Rm. 284) of Esar-haddon's Annals (Wi. AOF ii., 17/1). Esar-haddon, king of Assur, sakkanak of Babylon . . . Kus, whither none of my fathers . . . [messengers] had sent, [answer] had not come back, . . . whither birds do not fly (?). .

This is illustrated by the description which Esar-haddon gives in a fragment of his Annals (Budge, Hist, of Esar-haddon, mff. ; cp Wi. Unters. g7 f.), in which the king, speaking of his second Egyptian campaign, says, 'From the country of Egypt the camp I withdrew, and to the land of Meluhha I set straight the road (expedition) . . . Four kasbu of ground, a journey of two days, snakes (with) two heads ... of death, and I trampled upon . . . gazelles, of lizards winged (?)... The god Merodach, the great lord (to my) help came, he saved the life of my army'. This passage, indeed, is of illustrative value, not only for the frequent relation to Kus just quoted, but also for the striking description in Is. 30:5b, 30:7a, which (see ISAIAH [Book], 11) really refers to the flight of Hanunu of Gaza to Pir'u king of the N. Arabian Musri. The Assyrian and the Hebrew descriptions of the inhospitable region traversed are in singular agreement. We should remember, in reading the former, that Esar-haddon sought to bring all Arabia under the supremacy of Assyria.

6. Esar-haddon's account of his tenth campaign (Budge, 117). The phrase 'which (is called) in the language of the men of the land of Kus and Musur' can hardly refer, as Budge thought in 1880, to Ethiopia and Egypt. The order of the names would have been the reverse. So Winckler, Musri ii., 2, who gives another illustrative passage which need not be quoted.


(H-TO ; 32 n. ), one of the four 'sons' of Reuel b. Esau ; Gen. 36:13, 36:17, 1 Ch. 1:37 (in Gen. MOZE. but MOZ&I [D] in -v. 17 ; in Ch. OMOZ6 [B], MOX6 [A], M<\ze [L])- See EDOM, and cp GENEALOGIES i. , 7, col. 1665.


(AAN&CWN [Ti. WH]), a man of Cyprus, and an 'old disciple', in whose house in Jerusalem Paul lodged on the occasion of his last recorded visit to that city (Acts 21:16), the apostle and his party having been conducted thither by the friends from Caesarea. In EV Mnason is represented as having accompanied the party from Caesarea ; but ayoi-re? irap tf ffceo-te/oiei/ Mi/dcruW TII/I ought rather to be resolved into ay. Trpbs Mi/dcr. ira ei/i<r- Oianfv nap avrw, and translated 'bringing us to one Mnason, with whom we should lodge;. D Syr. p. marg. for ayocres K.T.A. reads as follows : OVTOI 6e rjyo.yoi r/juds TT/DOS cv<; feri<70w/Kf >, icai irapayei Ojiifi Oi eis TIVO. <cJjuir)i> eyero/aeSa Trapa Mi/doxoia Kvirpiio, V-afrrn) "PXi<?; KaKflBfv efidi/res rjA0o^e>> eis Ifp., VTreSefai To (Tisch. U7re 6ef av) re rjjads dovxfVws oi <16eA</>oi thus making out Mnason to have been Paul's host, not at Jerusalem, but at some village intermediate between Caesarea and Jerusalem. The reading is accepted by Blass, Holtzmann, and Hilgenfeld ; but, as Wendt (ad loc., 1899), remarks, it is not easy to see how such a reading, had it been the original one, should have disappeared from the received text, whilst, on the other hand, its introduction into the received text may be easily explained as due to a certain difficulty caused by v. 17, which seemed to imply that Paul did not arrive in Jerusalem until after he had been with Mnason.

Mnason is conjectured to have been a Hellenist and to have belonged to that circle of the (Hellenistic) 'brethren' by whom Paul was received gladly the day before he presented himself to James and the (Judaistic) elders (v. 17-18). The designation 'old disciple' (dpxaios fj.a6r)Tris) is perhaps to be associated with the 'at the beginning' (fv dpx??) of Acts 11:15 ; he may have been one of the men of Cyprus who were driven from Jerusalem by the persecution after the death of Stephen, and may have been first introduced to Paul at Antioch.


  • Name (1).
  • Boundaries (2).
  • Country (3-6).
  • People (7 ).
  • Roads (8).
  • Cities (9).
  • Neighbours (10).
  • History (11-12).
  • Moab and Israel (13).
  • More OT reff. (14).

1. Name and geographical terms.[edit]

The exact form of the name is tolerably certain ; Heb. X1O, Gen. 19:37, and 178 times (ace. to BDB), once [e]iTHC, H MGo&B[e]mc ; Ass. Mu-- a-ba, but also Ma- -ba, Ma- -ab, Ma- a-ab (Schr. KAT 140, 257, 355 and Glossary; Del. Par. 294/1), MI 3Nn. The etymology offered in Gen. 19:37 is hardly sufficient proof that Mo'ab was ever slurred to Me'ab, though such change was possible (Nestle, St. Kr., 1892, p. 573). The etymology in question is given in the Greek of Gen. 19:37, X^yowra e/c TOV irarpos /J.QV, which Ball (SBOT) adds to the MT: 3x0 ncS. Neither this derivation, however, nor an alternative of similar meaning (Ges. Thes. ) can be the real one. The form seems participial, and the Heb. 3^ , 'to desire', has been suggested, as if Moab= 'the desirable' land or people. It is more in accordance with what we know of the Moabite tongue to seek for the root in Arabic, where, however, the only possible one is wa'aba, 'to be affected with shame or anger'.

To this question is allied the other, of the original and principal object of the name. Some authorities (e.g. , Bennett in Hast. BD 8403) take this to have been the land. The Hebrew evidence, however, rather points to the people.

It is indeed doubtful whether in any OT passage 'Moab' by itself means the land. BDB s.v. cites Nu. 21:11 as a passage where the land is meant ; but in v. 13 Moab is parallel to the gentilic Amorite : in v. 15 also it is the people. 'Moab' is not necessarily the land even in Judg. 3:29, nor in Am. 2:1-2, nor Zeph. 2:9 (parallel to Ammonites) ; and everywhere else the people are obviously meant.

This evidence is confirmed by the facts : that Moab has not survived as a geographical term ; that the Greek translators found it necessary to form the geographical expression Mcoa- 3<fiTts [moabeitis]; and that similarly in Hebrew itself when the territory is intended one or other of several compound expressions is used : aNlDpK, 'land of Moab' both in D (and Dt. 15, 28:69 [29:1], 34:5-6 and Dt. passages in other books, e.g., Judg. 11:15+) and in P (Dt. 32:49) ; 3x10 mtt i 'territory of Moab' E (? Nu. 21:20) ;

  • O ntr in P (Gen. 30:35) and in Ruth 1:1-2 66 2:6, 4:3. Other

names for parts of the territory are liB Er!, 'the tableland', in P (Josh. 13:10, 13:16+, 20:8) ; probably also | nc* (1 Ch. 5:16, cp HG 548) from the same root ; 3N1D 1310, 'wilderness of M.' (Dt. 2:8) = niDnp a. 'wilderness of Kedemoth' or 'the eastern parts' (Dt. 2:26); 3!<iD nbnj;, 'steppes of M.', the parts of the Arabah opposite Jericho on the E. of Jordan : always in P (Nu. 22:1, 26:3, 26:63, 31:12, 33:50, 36:13, Dt. 34:18, Josh. 13:32);! niJT J~IK, 'the land of Ja'azer', is used by JE (Nu. 32:1) for the bulk of the country; and in Ezek. 25:9 we find 3N1D r ff3, 'shoulder of Moab', doubtless meaning the ridge above the Dead Sea. 2

2. Boundaries.[edit]

The natural boundaries of the land of Moab are well defined except in the N. , where there is practically no frontier. To the E. lies the Arabian desert ; but even here the line between arable land, on which men may settle, and the real desert suitable only for nomads, is indeterminate. As the ruins of towns, however, all cease before the Hajj (Mecca pilgrimage) road is reached, and as very few of the wadies rise farther E. , the road may be taken as a conventional boundary in that direction. On the S. , Is. 15:7 gives the D znj n Sm ( 'torrent valley of the Poplars' : see ARABAH [BROOK]) as the frontier ; this is probably the long Wady el Hasy (or Hesi or Hessi of the PEF reduced map, or el-Ahsa of some travellers), running up SE. from the south end of the Dead Sea, and described by Doughty (Ar. Des.lzb] as dividing the uplands of Moab from those of Edom (the c ni* nans, 'wilderness of E.' , 2 K. 3:8). On the W. the boundary was the Dead Sea and the Jordan. On the N. and NE. lay the territory of Ammon ; but here there are no natural features con spicuous enough to form a boundary. When Moab s political frontier lay so far N. it probably took a diagonal direction, running SE. from the torrent valley now called W. Nimrln, to the present Hajj road : there are no Moabite towns identifiable at any distance to the N. of W. Hesban (but see under AMMON and JAZER). With in these boundaries, measuring from the W. Nimrln on the N. to the W. el-Hasy on the S. and from the Dead Sea coast on the W. to the Hajj road on the E. , we get a territory about 60 mi. long by 30 broad ; but the actual utmost length of Moab may have been rather under than over 50 mi. ; of the breadth, not more than two- thirds was ever cultivated or settled land.

1 [It is not impossible that in documents used by the writers of our present Hexateuch the geography differed in important respects from that which we find in this work, and that the geographical difficulties which this work presents are largely owing to this. See special articles on the place-names, and WANDERINGS. Thus Moab may often have come from Missur (the N. Arabian Musri ; see MIZRAIM, 2b), and Arboth-Moab may have been corrupted out of Arab-missur. T. K. c.]

2 See col. 3170, n. 2.

3 The surface falls into two parts : N. of W. Waleh there is a rolling plain, now part of the Belka , and probably the Mlsdr of Josh. 13:16, etc. (see i): it is broken only by short glens in the W. From W. Waleh southwards the surface is broken as far E. as the desert by the great canons.

4 The PEF Survey Maps give the following heights from N. to S. Elealeh 3064 (on a height above the surrounding plateau), Heshbon2964, Mt. Nebo 2643 (rather below the plateau), Medeba 2380 (?) ; other neighbouring figures are 2600, 2700, 2800 ; Kerak is 3323, Moteh 2800, Jafar 4114 (?). The figures on the Hajj road from N. to S. run 2400, 2700, 2500, 2900.

3. Character of region.[edit]

[big relief map of moab goes here]

The bulk of this territory consists of high tableland on much the same level as the great deserts to the E. of it, but broken by several wide, deep, and precipitous canons across the greater part of its breadth, and by many shorter, but as abrupt, glens immediately above the Dead Sea. 3 In other words, Moab is but the cracked and gaping edge of the great Arabian plateau. The elevation is from 2300 to 3300 above the Mediterranean, or from 3600 to 4600 above the Dead Sea ; 4 rising slowly from N. to S. , and as a rule a very little higher along the W. edge (before the promontories run out) than towards the desert, to which there is a slight dip. The geology is the same as that of the range on the other side of the great Jordan fault : a basis of Nubian sandstone (as can be seen in the canons and along the Dead Sea coast) rising to 1000 ft. above the Mediterranean ; upon that a crystalline limestone some 1500 ft. thick ; and then 500 ft. of soft cretaceous limestone, on which lies the soil of the plateau. 1 The springs all rise at the junction of the hard and soft limestone. Thus the plateau itself is without them ; but they are found in all the canons and glens, which for the most part have in consequence perennial streams. As throughout Eastern Palestine, there are volcanic features : scattered outbreaks of black basalt, many of them with warm and sulphurous fountains. The rainfall is 'fair' (Wilson, PEFQ, 1899, p. 309), the climate colder than that of W. Palestine, and snowstorms 2 are not uncommon in winter and spring, and then the easterly winds are very cold. The summer is hot, but the nights cool (ibid. ).

Seen from Western Palestine, with the Dead Sea between, Moab presents the appearance of a mountain-wall (mountains of the AHARIM [q.v.]), the red sandstone glowing above the blue waters, and broken only by two or three valleys, of which the Mujib or Arnon offers the widest gap. Seen from the Jordan valley, the range of Abarim breaks up into what seem separate mountains, rising from the Dead Sea by slope and precipice to a height of 3000 and 4000 ft. ; but in reality these are not so much mountains as piers or promontories of the plateau, at pretty much the same level as the latter. Behind them runs, a very little higher than they, its long western ridge (already referred to), from which the plateau slopes very gently to the desert.

The general exposure of the plateau is thus eastwards and to the desert ; the slight western ridge shuts out the view to the W. From the similar geology, the scenery of the plateau is very like that of the hill-country of Judaea. In most localities one would not know the difference, except that in Judah the inhabitant always feels the great gulf lying to the E. and isolating the land from the rest of Asia ; whilst from Moab the open desert rolls eastward without trench or bulwark between. This fact is pregnant with much of the distinction between the histories of the two countries. In Moab you never feel out of touch with Arabia ; but Western Palestine belongs to the Levant.

The limestone soil of Moab, though often shallow, stony, and broken by ridges and scalps of rock, is extremely fertile, and produces, without artificial additions, large crops of wheat. Every traveller has been impressed with this. Visiting it in March, Bliss calls it 'the green plateau' (PEFQ, 1895, P- 20 5); even in July (1891), when the present writer was there, though the general aspect was brown and white, the amount of edible grass was considerable and the still unreaped fields were heavily laden with corn. In the town of Kerak, Doughty says (Ar. Des. 1:22, cp 1:12-13) that grain is almost as the sand. Where there is no cultivation the high healthy moors are tolerably covered with rich aromatic pasture and scattered bushes of 'retem' or broom ; and in the hollows, upon the non-porous lime stone, the grass grows high and thick (ib. 27), and even the surrounding slopes are in spring 'staidly green' (Bliss, op. cit. 213). With the nomadic character of so many of the present population, there are few vineyards (only about Kerak) ; but the English survey discovered many ancient winepresses, especially about Heshbon and about Sibmah in the Jordan valley. The plateau itself is almost absolutely treeless, 3 and the slopes towards the Jordan valley bear little more than thorns and thistles ; but in the well-watered canons there is much bush, tamarisks are frequent, and especially long lovely groves of oleander ; in places rushes and ferns grow luxuriantly. Consequently there is a wealth of bird-life (Tristram, Land of Moab}; wolves, jackals, hyaenas, gazelles, wild cows, and the beden or ibex are all found (Heth and Moab, 122 /.). Bees abound, and there is considerable cultivation of honey.

1 Cp Conder, Append. A to PEFM, Heth and Moab; Wilson, rEl Q. 1899, p. 307.

2 In Feb. 1898 Brunnow was delayed by deep snow in the Belka (.!//>/ / , 1899, p. 24).

3 Whilst Gilead is thickly wooded, the woods cease S. of the Jabbok ; here the only wood is the Hirsh el- Amriyeh. See / /-. / . s vrrrv, K. Pal., 109, cp group of firs at es-Sinobarat, i.e., the Firs (idem, 220).

4. Watercourses and headlands.[edit]

The principal valleys with watercourses and intervening mountains or headlands are the following, beginning from the N. First, there are a dozen or more short watercourses (of which the longest is hardly 16in.) falling rapidly from the surface level of the hard limestone, 2500 ft. above the Mediterranean, by more or less narrow glens, almost straight into the Jordan valley and Dead Sea, 1290 ft. below the Mediterranean. They contain shallow burns or brooks of water. The chief are the Wadies Nimrin, Kefrein, Kuseib, Hesban, Ayun Musa, el-Jideid, el-Meshabbeh. Ain Hesban (see HESHBON) is about 500 ft. below the village of that name, and gives birth to a considerable stream of pure water in a valley with many gardens and some ancient ruins. The headland between Wady Hesban and W. Ayun Musa, el-Mesukkar, is probably the biblical BETH- PEOR (g. v. -IIJ;B [paor] probably = 'gorge' or 'pass' ). The next headland, that to the S. of the W. Ayun Musa, still bears the name Neba, and may [as the text stands] confidently be identified with the Mt. Nebo of P, for which E and D give the Pisgah (see HG, 563-564. ; but cp NEBO, MOUNT). The ASHDOTH PISGAH are the barren terraces and steep slopes, covered with thistles only, which fall down into the W. 'Ayun Musa, and the Seil el-Hery or W. Jideid. The W. 'Ayun Musa would therefore be the 'glen' of Nu. 21:20 ; though some prefer for this the W. Hesban. The headland S. of W. Meshabbeh is taken by Conder and others to be Beth- peor ; behind it on the plateau is Ma'in, probably BAALME'ON.

5. The three canons.[edit]

After this series of short watercourses and intervening headlands we have the three large canons, which, with some of their tributaries, break from the desert itself. At first broad, shallow basins, they slowly shelve westward, narrowing as they deepen to some thousands of feet below the level of the plateau ; with colossal cliffs and, in some places before they reach their mouths on the Dead Sea coast, narrow ravines, almost impassable.

The first of these great trenches is the Wady Zerka Ma'in, with sources so far N. as the southern side of the watershed from the 'Amman, in Ammonite territory, and draining the whole of the northern plateau. The higher elevation of the plateau to the S. prevents any but the most meagre of tributaries from that direction. Ten miles from the Dead Sea the W. Zerka Ma'in is nearly 2 mi. wide from lip to lip and 1400 ft. deep. The whole of the stream in the Wady (not merely the hot wells upon it) appear to be the KaAXt/5p6?7 [Kallirrhon], Callirrhoe, of Josephus (Ant. xvii. 65 ; BJ \. 885) and Pliny ( NH v. 1672).

Josephus places 'down upon it' ((card [kata]) the hot baths to which Herod was carried. BJ. vii. ti 3 seems to describe the same wells in the valley to the N. of Machaerus (the modern Mkaur on the headland to the S. of W. Zerkfi Ma'in) under the name of Baapa; [Baaras], in which Greek form one may perhaps recognise rrhN3. Jerome (OS s. Beelmeon) gives the name as 'Baaru in Arabia [i.e., in the Roman province of that designation] ubi aquas calidas sponte humus effert' (while under Cariathaini he mentions Baare 10 R. m. W. of Medeba). Now 4.5 mi. from the mouth of the W. Zerka Ma'in, and due N. from Mkaur, there are hot wells : four large and some smaller, of which the hottest have a temperature of about 140 F. with strong deposits of sulphur. Ancient roads have been traced leading to the spot (which lies on the N. side of the shallow stream in a ravine 120 ft. broad, with luxuriant vegetation) ; and Roman medals with tiles and pottery have been discovered [see Seetzen, Reisen, 2:336-337, Irby and Mangles, Travels, 144-145, Tristram, Moab, Condor, Heth and Moab, 145, 149). The identity of the W. Zerka Ma'in with Callirrhoe is therefore tolerably certain. Conder suggests the same Wady and stream as the Nahaliel of Nu. 21:19 (see, however, NAHALIEL). S. of the W. Zerka Ma'in, the plateau bears one of its few high eminences, Jebel Attarus (c. 4000 ft.); see ATAROTH. In this connection we may refer to Buhl's suggestion (Pal. 124) as to the pDj;n in of Josh. 13:19 (see ZARETH-SHAHAR ; cp. Zarah, PEF Survey, 289).

1 This distinction between the stream on which the baths were and the baths themselves is overlooked by those who take Callirrhoe as referring to the baths (so Robinson, Phys. Geog. 164), and wonder why Josephus describes them as flowing into the Dead Sea. This removes any reason for finding Herod s Baths at es-Sara (Zarah) farther to the S., as Dechent proposes

The next canon southwards is the Wady Mojib, the biblical ARNON. The main branch starting in the wilderness of KEDEMOTH [q.v.] receives its first considerable contribution of water from the Ras el-Mojib, a fountainhead some 5 mi. W. of the Hajj road. The stream after running through a shallow depression falls in a cascade over 30 ft. high into a valley, which deepens rapidly (Buhl, Pal., after Langer's Reisebericht 16+). From the S. it is met by a wady, in which three have joined: the W. es-Sultan, the Seil Lej(j)un, with their sources not far from Katraneh on the Hajj road, and a shorter W. Balu a. See the new survey (which differs from previous accounts) by Bliss, PEFQ, 1895, pp. 215^, with map, p. 204. Again, about 4.5 mi. from the mouth it receives from the N. the W. Waleh with tributaries draining the plateau from as far N. as the Kal'at el Belka on the Hajj road. In biblical times all (or at least all except the last) of these branches appear to have borne the name Arnon : cp the plural phrase 'valleys of Arnon' in Nu. 21:14* (on vv. 14-15., cp VAHEB).

The main valley where it is crossed by the great high road of Moab (about 8 or 9 mi. from the Dead Sea) is some 2000 ft. deep, with cliffs which have impressed every traveller : the cliff of the valleys, Nu. 21:15 ; 'ostendunt regipnis illius accola; locum vallis in praerupta demersae, satis horribilem et periculosum, qui a plerisque usque nunc Arnonas appellatur' (Jer. OS, Arnon); cp Burckhardt and Seetzen's Travels, Doughty, Ar. Des., and Bliss (PEFQ, 1895, p. 215) : a thrilling moment of surprise on coming suddenly to the edge of the almost perpendicular cliffs. From edge to edge of these the distance is over 2mi.; at the bottom the bed is 40 yards wide. The Mojib issues on the Dead Sea through a chasm little more than 100 ft. wide. Altogether there is not S. of the Jabbok another natural division so decisive and impressive. It cannot, therefore, surprise us that, although lying across the middle of what we have seen to be the land of Moab, the Arnon should so often in history have proved a political boundary.

On the arrival of Israel the Arnon separated the Amorites from Moab, whom the former had driven S. of it (Nu. 21:13 {2} Judg. 11:18). It is also given as the S. limit of Reuben. In 37 A.D. it appears to have been the border between the territories of Herod and those of the Nabataeans, whom Herod had pushed to the S. of it (Jos. Ant. xviii. 5:1 ; HG, 569). Till 1893 the Arnon formed the S. boundary of the Turkish Mutaserrarlik of the Belka and of effective Turkish rule in E. Palestine : 3 and it is still the border between the lands of the Keraki and Hamadeh Arabs (Bliss, op. cit. 216).

The third great canon across Moab starts close to Katraneh on the Hajj road as the Wady 'Ain el-Franjy (perhaps the Brook ZERED 4 of Nu. 21:11-12), and then, as the W. Kerak, winds a narrow and deep ravine past Kerak (just before it leaves the plateau) and falls into the Dead Sea N. of the Lisan peninsula. By Kerak there is cultivation of olives, figs, pomegranates, and some vines. Between the Wadies Mojib and Kerak are two short glens with (watercourses W. el-Garrah and W. Beni (Hamid or) Hammad ; somewhere here was the ascent of LUHITH. S. of the Mojib the Jebel Shihan rises above the plateau to a height of about 3000 ft. Between the Wadies Kerak and el-Hasy (or Ahsii) are several shorter watercourses, of which the most important are W. el-Kuneiyeh (?) and W. Numere, the latter held by many to be the WATERS OF NIMEIM (Is. 156 Jer. 48:34 ).

1 In v. 13 the Arnon crossed by Israel is described as in the wilderness which comes forth from the border of the Amorite, which may refer to one of the branches of the W. Waleh.

2 [Elsewhere (see WANDERINGS, and cp VAHEB) it is pointed out that under the present text, which is not free from critical difficulty, there are traces of an earlier narrative in which the place-names belong to the Jerahmeelite and Misrite region. According to this view, Arnon in Nu. 21:13-14 has displaced Aram = Jerahmeel, and Moab (as often in the narrative books) is a corruption of Missur (r .f., the N. Arabian Musri). T.K.C.]

3 In 1893 a new mutaserraflik was established S. of the Arnon with its centre at Kerak, but taking its name from Ma'an near Petra.

4 [The present geography of Nu. 21:11-12 may perhaps be of later origin (cp ZERED) ; but this does not dispense us from the duty of seeking to understand it.]

6. Moabite portion of Jordan valley.[edit]

Along with this great plateau, the people of Moab at certain periods in their history held, and gave their name to, that part of the Jordan valley immediately below its northern section - i.e., opposite to Jericho on the E. of the river. This is what P calls the 'Arboth Moab' (see above, 1 ). The name Moab does not appear here before P ; yet earlier conquests of the eastern Jordan valley by Moab are not only asserted by presumably ancient narratives (e.g. , Judg. 3:12-30 ; see Moore's commentary), but were at all times extremely probable from the geographical relations of the Jordan valley to the Moabite plateau. The long level stretch just to the N. of the Dead Sea and E. of Jordan lies as much at the mercy of the occupants of the tableland above it as the opposite plains of Jericho lie open to the highlanders of Judasa and Ephraim. The warmth of the valley makes it an attractive refuge from the winter weather of the plateau, where according to an Arabic proverb the cold is always at home (HG 56). Nor is the whole district so barren as the names 'ARABAH, JESHIMON, and BETH- JESHIMOTH [qq.v.] would seem to imply. These are terms strictly applicable only to the neigbourhood of the Dead Sea. Farther N. there are many streams, and the soil in the warm air is exceedingly fertile. Irrigation is very easy. At the present day the Arabs of the plateau have winter camps in the valley ; and the Adwan tribe cultivate fields upon it (as the present writer on a visit in 1891 learned through the absence from the camp in W. Hesban of the chief Ali Dhiab, who was said to be attending to his harvests in the Ghor). Then the Jordan with its few and difficult fords opposite Jericho forms a frontier, which its more passable stretches farther up, opposite Ephraim, cannot provide. Consequently, even when Israel crossing the latter held Gilead, it was quite possible for Moab to hold the part of the valley opposite Jericho. In every way this belongs to the tableland above it. Similarly Moab must have held the well-watered and fertile land at the S. end of the Dead Sea.

7. Population.[edit]

The fertile plateau (see above, 3) with its extensive pasture-lands, and its much cultivation, producing corn, vines, and many fruit-trees, enjoyed a temperate climate (3) . It was therefore able to sustain an abundant population. To this the frequent ruins of small villages and not a few considerable towns still bear testimony. For the most part they evidently date from the Roman and Byzantine periods, 1 when the country was well protected from the desert Arabs by forts and camps, and was traversed by well-made roads (8), with a considerable commerce. Under native kings, or when held by Israel, the land of Moab cannot have been quite so safe, and therefore hardly so thronged ; still, we shall not be far wrong in conceiving of the population even then as abundant. In OT times we read of the cities of Moab ; and the people are pictured in multitudes and always as aggressive and tumultuous ( 'sons of tumult' Nu. 24:17 [see SHETH], cp Is. 15-16, Jer. 48:45).

If we were sure of the exact character of the many dolmens and cromlechs scattered over the NW. of the plateau (Conder reckons 200 in the portion he surveyed) we might add these to the proofs of a large population in the very earliest period. On the other hand, we must keep in mind that very large stretches of the plateau must always have been pastoral with few inhabitants. The figures on the Moabite Stone are puzzling; in l. 16 Mesha claims to have put to death in one place no fewer than 7000 Israelites ; but again in l. 20 the forces he led against Jahaz consisted only of 200 men, taken from all the clans of Moab.

1 Cp Briinnow, MDPV, 18

The disposition and nature of the land cannot have been without effect on the character and manner of life of the inhabitants. So tempting a province, so open to the desert, must always have had a large portion of its population in various stages of transition from the nomadic and pastoral to the settled and agricultural conditions of life. So they are pictured throughout history and so they are to-day. The OT recognises Moab as a Semitic people, therefore of nomadic and Arabian origin, who had settled in their land shortly before the arrival of Israel. 1 It mixes up Moab and Midian (Nu. 25). From the fifth century onwards we find them dispossessed or overrun by Arabs and Nabataeans. The Roman Empire - by means of chains of forts and several large and heavily fortified castles like those whose ruins are now called Lej(j)iin, Kasr Bsher, and perhaps also Meshetta (Bliss, PEFQ, 1895, with plans and views) - kept the nomads back ; and hence villages and cultivation multiplied in Roman times more than other periods. Under the nominal government of the Turks the bulwarks gave way ; and to-day we find the pure Arab tribes like the 'Anazeh harassing the E. border ; whilst within it other Arabs like the Adwan are settling to the cultivation of definite lands. Thus there must have been many successive deposits on the broad plateau from the restless human tides of Arabia. This may partly explain the noisy, aggressive character attributed to Moab by the OT (see above). The story of the origin of the nation (Gen. 19:30+) and other passages in the OT (Nu. 25, Jer. 48:26) seem to charge them with drunkenness and licentiousness. We have seen that the vine was extensively cultivated, and in the portion of the land surveyed by Colonel Conder's party many winepresses were discovered both on the plateau (especially about el-Meshakkar and Hesban and at Sumia). The heat, too, of the Jordan valley enervates and demoralises : it was on its plains that Israel gave way to the impure rites of Beth-peor. Altogether we see from the geography, and from the OT pictures of Moab, a wild Arab race decadent under the first temptations of vine-culture and a relaxing climate.

1 [Compare, however, GAD, 8.]

2 N. of the W. Zerka Ma'in there is a broad shelf before the plateau itself is reached.

3 Also near Sumia.

8. Roads.[edit]

The main lines of wayfaring and traffic across Moab have always been very much the same ; and now the less important tracks of ancient times are still discernible. From the fords of Jordan opposite Jericho (there were four or five, all difficult) and the bridge which in Roman times (according to the recently discovered Mosaic map, see MEDEBA) spanned the river in the neighbourhood of the present bridge, various roads crossed the Jordan valley to the E. and SE. In contrast to the W. coast of the Dead Sea the E. coast gives no room for a road at the level of the sea ; for the most part the cliffs come down to the water's edge (see a paper by Gray Hill in the PEFQ, 1900). 2

Yet a track runs somewhat up the side of the hills as far as the W. Zerka Ma'in ; and some distance above it, just after the W. Ghuweir is passed, there is a stretch of ancient road marked on the PEF reduced Map at a level of 183 ft. below the Mediterranean or about 1000 ft. above the Dead Sea. It appears again on the S. of the W. Hawarah, and must have led to the healing springs in the valley of Callirrhoe (see 5), converging on which several ancient tracks have been discovered. One must have continued at least to Machaerus.

All the other roads from the Jordan made for the slopes and passes leading to the plateau. One, at present much frequented, by which the present writer travelled, climbs the ridge of Ras Kuseib and then curves S. towards Hesban. But there are tracks, with remains of ancient roads, 3 apparently Roman, up the W. Hesban, from which a road led through a steep rock-cutting upon Heshbon on the edge of the plateau. Another ancient track passed by el-Meshakkar ( 4) on Heshbon (PEFM E. Pal. 151) ; another by the W. 'Ayun Musa to Nebo (?) ; and another by W. Jideid to Medeba or Ma'in. The name of the lower stretches of the latter Wady (Ghuweir, 'the little Ghor' or 'chasm' ), suggests to Conder (PEFM) the Heb. mn, with probably the same meaning, and therefore the 'ascent of HORONAIM' [q.v.] (Is. 15:5, Jer. 48:5). 1 Less plausible is the same explorer's suggestion of Tal'at Heisah or el-Heithah (a glen running up from W. Jideid upon Nebo) for the 'ascent of LUHITH' (Is. 15:5, Jer. 48:5).

All these roads from the Jordan valley struck a trunk road running S. , along the whole extent of the plateau by Elealeh, Heshbon, and Medeba, across the W. Waleh, by the W. of Dibon close by Kasr el-Besheir, across Arnon, by Rabbah to Kerak, and so ultimately across Edom to the Gulf of Akabah. Its course is marked by Roman milestones, many still in situ, and other ancient remains. In the Wadies Mojib and el-Hesi 'the gradients were laid out with great skill' (Sir Ch. Wilson, PEFQ, 1899, p. 309). A branch connected this road with Ma'in (Bliss, PEFQ, 1895, p. 213), which lies to the W. of it. Other branches struck N. and NW. from Heshbon to Rabbath-Ammon, and can still be traced past Kh. el- Amriyeh, and to the N W. of Umm el- Hanafish (PEF red. Map). Other branches struck across the country to the second great N. and S. road along the borders of the desert, represented to-day by the Hajj road. 2 Whilst the remains of all these ancient roads are Roman, dating from the Antonines, the great road-makers in Syria, they probably represent still older lines of travel. Whilst the western trunk road must always have been the more secure from the nomad Arabs, the deep canons which it crosses make it much the more difficult. The line of Israel s passage N. lay along the E. trunk road till at least the W. Waleh was passed, when it turned NE. upon Heshbon, and so down either the W. Ayun Musa or the W. Hesban to the Jordan Valley (see HG 564).

1 Jos. Ant. xiii. 154 mentions Oronas as a town of Moab.

2 A third Roman road N. and S. appears to have run from Rabbath-Ammon by el-Kahf, Umm el-Walid, Remeil, Trayya, Kasr Bsher and Rujiim Rishan to Lejjfm. On this, and on the line of forts protecting the springs to the E. of it, and on the Roman roads S. of Lejjun, see Briinnow s papers in MDPV, 1898-1899.

9. Cities of Moab.[edit]

Of the cities of Moab we have first of all a group in the Jordan valley: BETH-NIMRAH [q. v.] at Tell Nimrin ; BETH-HARAN [q.v.] at Tell-Rameh ; both of which, though they are mentioned in the OT only in connection with the Amorites and Gad, must have belonged to Moab at many periods (cp NIMRIM of Is. 156) ; BETH- JESHIMOTH [q.v. ] at Suweimeh ; HORONAIM [q.v. ] on one of the passes leading up to the plateau (see above, 8). According to Eusebius BETH-PEOR [q.v. ] lay between Beth-nimrah and Beth-haran ; but see above, 4. SEBAM or SIBMAH [q.v.} is placed by Conder (PEFM 221) at Sumia in the W. Hesban, 2 m. from Hesban.

On the plateau N. of W. Zerka Ma'in were situated the following towns, beginning from the N. : ELEALEH, HESHBON, NEBO, MEDEBA, BETH-MEON. These are either on high sites on the promontories and considered as sacred, like Nebo and Beth-meon, or on mounds by the main road, like Elealeh, Heshbon, and Medeba. Kh. 'Abu Nalkeh Merrill identifies with the 'Moabite town' N^K\a [Nekla] of Ptolemy ; in es-Samik, a few mi. E. of Hesban, some see Samaga, taken along with Medeba by John Hyrcanus (Jos. Ant. 13:9:1). Kefeir el-Wusta and Kefeir Abu Sarbut, on the main road, must have been considerable towns in Byzantine times and perhaps earlier (PEFM E. Pal. ). Kal'at Ziza, about 4 mi. to the W. of the Hajj road, was a military post of the Romans (Not. Dignit. ). On Mashetta or Umm Shetta, to the E. of the Hajj road see Tristram (Land of Moab) and Bliss (PEFQ, 1895). On Kal'at Belka, a castle on the Hajj road, see Doughty (Ar. lies. 1:13, 1:19)-

Between the W. Zerka Ma'in and the W. Waleh there were no towns on the main road ; but to the W. lay 'ATAROTH [q.v. , modern Attarus], KIRIATHAIM [q.v. , modern Kureiyat], and the strong fortress of MACHAERUS (q.v. , and cp ZERETH-SHAHAR).

South of the W. Waleh lay DIBON [q.v.], the modern Dhiban to the E. of the main road, on which farther S. are the ruins of the Roman castle, now called Kasr el-Besheir. North-east of Dibon is el-Jumeil, identified by some with BETH-GAMUL of Jer. 4823: cp the el- Gamila of Idrisi (ZDPV 8:128). Buhl, however, puts Beth-gamul S. of Arnon. East of Dibon (Bliss, op. cit. , 227) are the important ruins of Umm er-Resas reckoned by some to be KEDEMOTH [q.v.]; JAHAZ [q.v.] (which Eusebius places between Dibon and Medeba) must also have lain about here ; and MEPHAATH (Josh. 13:18, Jer. 48:21), according to Eus. a castle on the edge of the desert. Upon the main road just as it dips into the precipitous W. Mojib lay AROER [q.v.].

In the valley of the Arnon there apparently lay 'the city in the midst of the valley' (Josh. 13:9) : see AR.

Of the sites S. of the Arnon the following lie on or near the great trunk-road. On the S. edge of the W. Mojib are the ruins, Mehatet el-Hajj, which Tristram and others propose to identify with AR. To the W. of the road at the foot of the hill called Shihan are ruins of the same name : and farther S. on the road others at Haimer, Erihah, Beit el-Karm, called also Kasr Rabba with 'tanks and a great building evidently Roman' (Irby and Mangles, ch. 8), and Hememat with a tower, Misde (also at Mejdelein, west of the road). Then come the more considerable remains of Rabba (ib. , 'two old Roman temples and some tanks but no trace of walls'; Brunow, MDPV , 1895, P- 71, notices 'a kind of forum' ). This appears to be Rabbath (i.e. , chief town of) Moab (see OS) to which the Greeks gave the name of ApeoTroAts [Areopolis] (see AR). Buhl (Pal. 270) thinks it possible that we have here KERIOTH and KIR-MOAB (see KIR-HERES) ; but KIR-MOAB, known also as KIR-HARESETH, is placed by most at Kerak, 1 for a description of which see KIR-HERES. To the proofs of the identification of KIR-HERES with Kerak, given there, add the name (hitherto overlooked in this connection) of Wady Harasha (with a ruin Kasr H. ) which is applied, according to Brunnow (MDPV 1895, p. 68) to the lower part of the Wady Kerak. Some 12 mi. E. of Kerak lies the ruin Lej(j)un, for the exact orientation of which, with plans, see Bliss, PEFQ, 1895. South of Kerak Eusebius places EGLAIM (q.v.).

Indeed, this district of Moab, a country of downs with verdure so close as to appear almost turf and with cornfields, is 'covered with sites of towns on every eminence and spot convenient for the construction of one . . . ruined sites visible in all directions' (Irby and Mangles, ch. 7 , May 14 and 15). Here was the scene of the first encounter of Moslem troops with the Romans and their defeat at el-Moteh ; Dat-ras on the N. edge of the W. el-Ahsi is the Thorma of the 'Itinerary' (Wilson, PEFQ, 1899, p. 315).

From Kerak a Roman road led SW. into the Ghor (Brunnow, MDPV, 1895, p. 68) by Dera'a on the W. Harasha 2 (see above) ; and on this flank of Moab also not a few remains have been noted by travellers (see LUHITH, NIMRIM, and cp Tristram, Land of Moab, 57 ; Buhl, Pal. 272).

In the time of Josephus there lay at the S. end of the Dead Sea a town Zoapa [zoara] (BJ 4:8:4, v. II. faapa, etc. ). In 0S under /3a\a [bala], Eusebius calls it o-^wp [sugoor] and faapa [zoara], and describes it as lying on the Dead Sea, with a garrison : 'the balsam and palm grow by it'. It is the same, which under the name Zughar, Sughar, or Sukar is mentioned by the Arab geographers (Le Strange, Pal, under Moslems, 286+), as a station on the trade route from the Gulf of Akabah to Jericho, one degree of lat. S. of Jericho. They describe it as on the Dead Sea, near the desert, overhung by mountains, near el- Kerak, with a hot and evil climate ; the people thickset and swarthy. The Crusaders knew it as Segor (Kohricht, Gescft. Kbnigr. Jerus. 15, 409, 411 ; see also ZDPV 14, the Florentine map) but called it Palnien (Will, of Tyre, 108 2230), Villa Palmarum, and Paumer. It is curious that Napoleon should mention the place under its biblical name 'at the extremity of the Dead Sea 20 leagues from Hebron, 15 from Kerak' (Guerre d Orient, Camp, d gypte et de Syrie, vol. ii. 12 /.). Where did he get this information ? Irby and Mangles (Travels, ist June, 1818) place it in the lower part of the W. Kerak. Clermont Ganneau (/>/:/ (?, 1886, p. 20) proposes a site near the Tawahin es-Soukhar in the Ghor es-Safieh ; Kitchener (PEFQ, 1884, p. 216) found many ruins of great antiquity under the name Kh. Labrush. See also Reland, Palest. 577, 957, and Robinson, BR 648 ff- The Arab geographers identify it with the Zoar of Lot and this is accepted by those modern authorities who place the 'cities of the plain' at the S. end of the Dead Sea. See further ZOAR, SODOM. G. A. s.

1 Besides Irby and Mangles (Travels, ch. 7 /), cp A. L. Hornstein in PEFQ, 1898, pp. 93^, with views.

2 Here some place the descent of Horonaim ; but see 8.

10. The four Hebrew peoples.[edit]

Moab and Ammon (children of Lot) constitute along with Edom and Israel (children of Isaac) that group of four Hebrew peoples which in early antiquity had issued from the Syro-Arabian wilderness, and settled on the border of the cultivated land eastward of the 'great depression'. According to Genesis, they had come out of Mesopotamia, and so were precursors of the larger wave which followed from the same quarter, forming the most southern outpost of the Aramaean immigration into the lands of Canaan and Heth (see AMORITES, CANAAN, CANAANITES). The aborigines in whose lands the B'ne Ammon and Moab and the B'ne Israel successively settled were not extinguished by the conquest ; they even exercised a far- reaching influence over their lords. The Moabites, and doubtless also the Ammonites and the Edomites, spoke the language of Canaan as well as the Israelites. They must have learned it from the Canaanites in the land eastward of Jordan. Our knowledge is extremely imperfect as regards other departments of the Canaanite influence ; but in religion it has left a noticeable trace in the cultus of BAAL-PEOR (q.v. ), which was carried on in Moabite territory but was certainly of Canaanite origin. The special god of Moab, however, was Chemosh. Just as Israel was the people of Yahwe, and Ammon the people of Milcom, Moab was the people of Chemosh (shea, Nu. 21:29). The kingship of Chemosh was regarded as thoroughly national and political in its character, but did not on that account exclude the institution of a human king, which appeared in Moab much earlier than in Israel ; in the time of Moses the Moabites had a king, and the institution was even then old. The capitals of the kingdom were Ar Moab and Kir Moab, S. from the Arnon ; these were not, however, the constant residences of the kings, who continued to live in their native places, as, for example, Mesha in Dibon.

1 [Three kings of Moab (Malta, Mu'aba, Ma'ab) are mentioned in the cuneiform inscriptions, - Salamanu who was subdued by Tiglath-pileser in 733 ; Kammusunadbi (Chemoshnadab), who paid tribute to Sennacherib in 701 ; and a king of uncertain name who warred against the king of Kedar in the name of Asur-bani-pal (Schr. A A 7"( 21 , 251, 291, \Vi. GI 1 IO8/I).]

11. Early Moabite history.[edit]

The historical importance of the Moabites lies wholly in their contact with Israel. 1 After the Israelites had quitted Egypt and passed a nomadic life for about a generation in the neighbourhood of Kadesh, they migrated thence into northern Moab, dispossessing the Amorites, who had made themselves masters of that district. The interval from Kadesh to the Arnon could be passed only by a good understanding with Edom, Moab, and Ammon, a proof that the ethnical relationships, which at a later period were expressed only in legend, were at that time still living and practical. In all probability the Moabites called the Israelites to their aid ; they were not as yet aware that this little pastoral people was destined one day to become to them a greater danger than the Canaanites by whom they were threatened at the moment. 1

As the story of Balaam indicates, the Moabites would willingly have been rid of their cousins after their service had been rendered, but were unable to prevent them from settling in the land of Sihon. The migration of the tribes of Israel into western Palestine, however, and the dissolution of their warlike confederation soon afterwards made a restoration of the old frontiers possible. If king Eglon took tribute of Benjamin at Jericho, the territory between Arnon and Jordan must also have been subject to him, and Reuben must even then have lost his land, or at least his liberty. It would appear that the Moabites next extended their attacks to Mount Gilead, giving their support to the Ammonites, who, during the period of the judges, were its leading assailants. So close was the connection between Moab and Ammon that the boundary between them vanishes for the narrators (Judg. 11). See AMMONITES, JEPHTHAH.

Gilead was delivered from the Ammonites by Saul, who at the same time waged a successful war against Moab 2 (1 S. 14:47). The establishment of the monarchy necessarily involved Israel in feuds with its neighbours and kin. The Moabites being the enemies of the Israelite kingdom, David naturally sent his parents for shelter thither when he had broken with Saul (1 S. 22:2-3. ; see, however, MIZPEH, 3) ; the incident is precisely analogous to what happened when he himself at a later period took refuge from Saul's persecution in Philistine territory, and needs no explanation from the book of Ruth. As soon as he ceased to be the king's enemy by himself becoming king, his relations with Moab became precisely those of his predecessor. The war in which apparently casual circumstances involved him with the Ammonites really arose out of larger causes, and thus spread to Moab and Edom as well. The end of it was that all the three Hebrew nationalities were subjugated by Israel ; the youngest brother eclipsed and subdued his seniors, as Balaam had foreseen. Both Ammon and Moab, however, must have emancipated themselves very soon after David's death, and only now and then was some strong king of Israel able again to impose the yoke for a time, not upon the Ammonites indeed, but upon Moab. The first to do so was Omri, who garrisoned some of the Moabite towns and compelled the king to acknowledge Israel's suzerainty by a yearly tribute of sheep a state of matters which continued until the death of Ahab ben Omri. That brave king, however, fell in battle with the Aramaeans at Ramoth Gilead (about 850 B.C. ), and Mesha of Dibon, then the ruler of Moab, succeeded in making himself and his people independent. In his famous inscription (see MESHA) he gives his patriotic version of the story ; in the book of Kings we find only the curt statement that Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab (2 K. 11) ; on the other hand there is a full narrative (2 K. 3) of a vain attempt, made by Jehoram ben Ahab, to bring Mesha into subjection. See MESHA, 6, and JEHORAM, 4.

As the Moabites owed their liberation from Israelite supremacy to the battle of Ramah - that is, to the Aramaeans - we find them (as well as the Ammonites) afterwards always seconding the Aramaeans in continual border warfare against Gilead. in which they took cruel revenge on the Israelites. With what bitterness the Israelites in consequence were wont to speak of their hostile kinsfolk can be gathered from Gen. 19:30+ - the one trace of open malice in the story of the patriarchs, all the more striking as it occurs in a narrative of which LOT (q. v. ) is the hero and saint, which, therefore, in its present form, is of Moabite origin, although perhaps it has a still older Canaanite nucleus. Of these border wars we learn but little, although from casual notices it can be seen (2 K. 13:20, Am. 1:13 ; cp 2 K. 5:2) that they were kept up long, although not quite uninterruptedly. When at length the danger from the Aramaeans was removed for Israel by the intervention of the Assyrians, the hour of Moab's subjection also came; Jeroboam II. extended his frontier over the eastern territory, as far as to the 'Brook of the Poplars' 1 (Am. 6:14 ; but cp ARABAH, BROOK OF THE).

1 The facts as a whole are indubitable ; it cannot be an invention that the Israelites settled first in Kadesh, then in northern Moab, and thence passed into Palestine proper. The only doubtful point is whether the song in Nu. 21:27+ is contemporary evidence of these events.

2 [There is indeed, as so often, a doubt whether the original document did not refer rather to Missur [see MIZRAIM] than to Moab. See SAUL, 3. T.K.C.]

12. Later History.[edit]

It would seem that subjugation by the Assyrians was not as heavy a blow to the Moabites as to some neighbouring peoples. Probably it helped to reconcile them to the new situation that the Israelites suffered much more severely than they. From these, their deadly enemies, they were henceforth for ever free. They did not on that account, however, give up their old hatred ; they merely transferred it from Israel to Judah. The political annihilation of the nation only intensified the religious exclusiveness of the Jewish people. Terrible expression was given by the Edomites and the Moabites to their malignant joy at the calamities of their kinsfolk. 2

'Because Moab saith : Behold the house of Judah is like all the other nations, therefore do I open his land to the line Kedem', says the prophet Ezekiel (25:8+). His threat against the Moabites, as well as against the Edomites and the Ammonites is, that they shall fall before the approach of the desert tribes (see EAST, CHILDREN OF THE; REKEM). Probably in his days the tide of Arabian invasion was already slowly rising, and of course it swept first over the lands situated on the desert border. At all events the Arab immigration into this quarter began at an earlier date than is usually supposed ; it continued for centuries, and was so gradual that the previously-introduced Aramaising process could quietly go on alongside of it. The Edomites gave way before the pressure of the land-hungry nomads, and settled in the desolate country of Judah ; the children of Lot, on the other hand, appear to have amalgamated with them - the Ammonites maintaining their individuality longer than the Moabites, who soon entirely disappeared. 3

13. Israel and Moab compared.[edit]

Israel and Moab had a common origin, and their early history was similar. The people of Yahwe on the one hand, the people of Chemosh on the other, had the same idea of the Godhead as head of the nation, and a like patriotism derived from religious belief - a patriotism that was capable of extraordinary efforts, and has had no parallel in the West either in ancient or in modern times. The mechanism of the theocracy also had much that was common to both nations ; in both the king figures as the deity s representative, priests and prophets as the organs through whom he makes his communications. Still, with all this similarity, how different were the ultimate fates of the two ! The history of the one loses itself obscurely and fruitlessly in the sand ; that of the other issues in eternity. One reason for the difference (which, strangely enough, seems to have been felt not by the Israelites alone but by the Moabites also) is obvious. Israel received no gentle treatment at the hands of the world ; it had to carry on a continual con flict with foreign influences and hostile powers ; and this perpetual struggle with gods and men was not profitless, although the external catastrophe was inevitable. Moab meantime remained settled on his lees, and was not emptied from vessel to vessel (Jer. 48:11), and corruption and decay were the result. This explanation, however, does not carry us far, for other peoples with fortunes as rude as those of Israel have yet failed to attain historical importance ; they have simply disappeared. The service the prophets rendered at a critical time, by raising the faith of Israel from the temporal to the eternal sphere, cannot be exaggerated (see PROPHECY). j. w.

1 Perhaps the song in Nu. 21:27+ refers to these events ; some critics will add Is. 15:1-16:12.

2 Zeph. 28f. 2 K. 24:2 and Ezek. 25:8+. It need hardly be said that the Moabites shared the fate of all the Palestinian peoples when supremacy passed from the Assyrians to the Chalda;ans, and that, notwithstanding their hatred of the Jews, they had no difficulty in seeking alliances with them, when occasions arose on which they could be made useful (Jer. 27:3). [The prophecy against Moab in Jer. 48 cannot be the work of Jeremiah. See JEREMIAH ii. , 20, ix. ; col. 2392.]

3 We. Kleine ProfhetenC 1 ), 206 (on Obadiah) ; [on certain references to the Moabites in late OT writings Ezra 9 i Neh. 13 i Is. 25 10 f. Ps. 83 7 [6] cp Intr. Is. 159, 161].

14. More on biblical references.[edit]

The authors of the above sections are scholars who have a right to speak, and whose writings will not soon be forgotten. A union of forces, however, seems necessary in order to take a fresh step in advance. The geographical section would be very incomplete without the historical, and it may perhaps be hoped that a supplement to the historical section will add somewhat to its usefulness. For there is a preliminary inquiry, which no good scholar in recent times has altogether neglected, but which requires to be taken up in a more thorough and methodical manner the state of the texts on which our geography and our history are based. It must also be confessed that our criticism of the narratives has been, until very lately, too literary, and not quite sufficiently historical. A criticism of the local names may not have led as yet to as many important results as the criticism of the personal names of the OT ; but an examination of the special articles dealing with the names of the 'cities of Moab' (9) will show that an inquiry which cannot safely be ignored is being made, and that identifications have in the past too often been tried, and views of the route of the Israelites in their migration taken, which presuppose doubtful, even if ancient, readings. Textual criticism, too, has objections to make to some of the historical inferences of earlier critics because of their precarious textual basis. It is obvious that if 'Moab' and 'Missur', 'Midian' and 'Missur', 'Ammon' and 'Amalek', 'Edom' and 'Aram' ( =Jerahmeel), are liable to confusion, the greatest care becomes necessary in steering one's way between the rocks. Mistakes will sometimes occur, as when, after correcting some of the most corrupt names in Gen. 36:31-39, Edom is retained by the author of the article BELA (col. 524) in v. 31 f. and Moab in v. 35. For these two (corrupt) ethnic names 'Aram' and 'Missur' should probably be substituted. The historical result would be that it was not Midian and Edom but Midian and Jerahmeel that fought together in the early times referred to, and that the territory that was contested was the highland of Missur, not the plateau of Moab. 1 The story of Balak and Balaam also needs to be re-read in the light of text-critical discoveries. It is most probable, from this newer point of view, that Balak, with whom the Israelites are said to have had to do, was king, not of Moab, but of Missur. It is doubt ful, too, whether in its original form the story of Eglon and Ehud represented the former as being of Moab and not rather of Missur (note that Eglon gathers 'the b'ne Ammon and Amalek', really, the b'ne Jerahmeel, and that they occupy the 'city of palm trees' (i.e., really, the city of Jerahmeel). 2 Even if in this instance we adhere to MT, Winckler (G/ 1205) will probably still be right in using the narrative as an evidence of the late ness of the Moabitish people as compared with the b'ne Israel. More probably, however, Eglon was a Misrite king. Nor can we at all trust the records of the conquests of Saul and David. A group of phenomena make it very nearly certain that in 1 S. 14:47, 2 S. 8:2, 'Missur' has been transformed into 'Moab'.

That Saul conquered either the Moabites or the Misrites is of course most unlikely ; but the probability is strong even against the view that David had to do with the Moabites. The whole passage (2 S. 8:1-3) first becomes intelligible when we read it thus, And David smote the Philistines, and took the Maacathite country out of the hand of the Philistines. He smote Missur and Jerahmeel and the Zarephathites, and those of Missur became servants to David, bringing tribute. If we are reluctant to admit the change of Mpab to Missur, let it be remembered that the same textual criticism dispenses us from the obligation of pronouncing David guilty of barbarity to the conquered to a people from whom, according to one tradition, his parents had received hospitality. 1 The right reading was probably known to the writer of Nu. 24:17.{2}

1 Cp Judg. 6:4, where we should probably read 'Missur' (not 'Seir' ) and 'the highland of Aram' ( = Jerahmeel).

2 See JERICHO, i. The city of Jerahmeel may quite as well mean Kadesh-barnea ( 'barnea' should be read 'Jerahmeel' ) as Jericho.

Thus it is probable that the first trustworthy notice of contact between Israel and Moab is in 2 K. 1:1. This notice, however, as Kittel points out, is very isolated (cp 11), and we naturally infer that a record of wars between the two peoples has been lost. Moab, then, is at any rate a younger people than Israel.

What event is referred to in Is. 15:1-16:12 has been much disputed. According to Duhm and Marti, the foes of Moab are the NABATAEANS (q.v. ). Diodorus (19:94) says of these nomads that they regarded it as wrong to plant wheat and trees and wine. This would make the destruction of the vines referred to in the prophetic elegy intelligible. If so, Is. 15:1-16:12 may be referred to the fifth century ; the postscript (v. 13 /. ) will be later (time of Alexander JANNAEUS [q.v.]?).

There is little more to add by way of supplement to 10-13. 1" e absence of the name of Moab in the list of the vassal states of Bir- idri (KB 2173) is accounted for by Winckler ((7/1207) by the supposition that a Moabite contingent was included among the troops of Ahab, who is mentioned (see AHAB, 4-5). Whether the Moabites are rightly included in 2 K. 24:2 among the peoples which sent bands against Judah in the reign of Jehoiakim may be doubted. A comparison of passages in the Psalms, Lamentations, and later prophecies and narratives irresistibly leads the present writer to the conclusion that the right names are Cushites, Jerahmeelites, and Misrites (see OBADIAH [BOOK]). It is also very possibly an error to suppose that the Moabites are specially referred to in the Book of Nehemiah ; this, however, is partly connected with the question as to the ethnic names in the narrative of the migration of the Israelites. There is, at any rate, much confusion in the names mentioned in Nehemiah, and elsewhere (see SANBALLAT) it is maintained that both 'Sanballat' and 'Horonite' are probably miswritten : the one for 'Nebaiothite' ( = Nabataean ?), the other (which is to be taken with the miswritten 'Tobiah' ) for 'Rehobothite'. Cp also RUTH [BOOK].

Winckler ((7/1204) makes the striking remark that Moab at the time of its immigration was probably just such a small tribe as the Calebites and the separate Israelitish tribes. In civilisation and racial conscious ness there was no difference, and in language none worth mentioning, between them and the Israelites. Noldeke (Die sem. Sprachen, 17) also remarks that the style of the inscription of Mesha is essentially that of the OT, and allows us to infer the existence of a similar literature among the Moabites. As Noldeke also points out, the only important un-Hebraic feature of the inscription is the occurrence of the eighth Arabic conjugation (with t after the first radical). The inscriptional style may, however, have differed considerably from the type of the actually spoken tongue. Cp MESHA, 4.

G. A. S., 1-9; J. We., 10-13; T. K. C., 14.


(HHiriD, 33, 72, Yahwe promises ? ), a priestly family temp. Joiakim (EZRA ii., 6b, n), Neh. 12:17 (om. BS*A ; N KMROIC [N c a lng inf ] I [L]) : cp MAADIAH.

1. 1 S. 22:3, where read Zephath (Zarephath) of Missur. 1 See MIZPEH.

2 pNC (Jer. 48:45) is accepted by Di. for riC . fifC i however, as also in Am. 2:2, comes from JC>13 (the N. Arabian Cush), which at once suggests 11XD for 3 KID.


(MOXMOYP [ R : om - A l- MOYX- [***] MOK. [N c - avi<1 -]. machur [Vet. Lat.] ; fabtft [Syr.]), a brook upon which stood CHUSI (Judith 7:18). It was situated near to EKREBEL (mod. 'Akrabeh), whence Schultz has identified it with Makfuriyeh close to 'Akrabeh.


a city or village of Judaea. Most modern authorities (e.g. , Grimm, Schiirer, Zockler) rightly prefer the form Modein or Modeim.

1. Name.[edit]

LXX's readings vary considerably ; /j.o)5ecr [N* i Macc. 2 i, n c - b 16 4 V 9 19] ; -eeti/ [A 2 i etc.] ; -/x [A 2 23 9 19] ; -aeii/ [ N c.a 2 i , K 9 19 etc.]; -p. [A 16 4] ; -ieii/ [V 2 Mace. 13 14] ; -ft. [A #.] ; -iv [K* V 16 4 ] ; - M [V 2 15 23] ; -o> [V 2 i] ; other readings are /iio6ai? [Jos., ed. Niese, Ant. xii. 61], -i/u [it. 112], -v [BJ i. 13]; in OV28159 14020 /mjSeei/u Modeim; Modin [Vg., whence EV].

The later Hebrew form (which often has the article also) varies. Pal. Mishnah (ed. Lowe) reads n V llDn (Modi'ith) Pesah. 9:2 (Talm. Bab. 93b), Hag. 3:5 (Talm. Bab. 256). Other readings are {vyiiD, j jma. C jniSn, JVjnia.t-

In the Medeba mosaic (see MEDEBA) the reading Mw5t0a [mooditha] occurs, and this seems to point back to the Hebrew Modiith.

In 2:17 Modin is called a city, TroAis [polis] (so in v. 15 eis MwSeeii TTIV TroAii/). Josephus, on the other hand, describes it as a village of Judaea (iv MwSai, KW/UT; rijs Iou^atas, Ant. xii. 6 1 11 2). Eus. (K<afj.Ti) and Jer. (vicus) agree with Josephus; so Jerome on Dan. 11:38. In Vg. it is referred to as a hill (in monte Modin), and this, curiously enough, reappears in later Rabbinical authorities. See Grimm on 1 Mace. 2:1, and Rashi on T. B. Baba Bathra 10b. Naturally the place was of most importance in Maccabaean times ; by the time of Josephus it may have dwindled. The ruins at el-Medyeh, with which Modin is usually identified, seem to point to an ancient collection of villages, a fact which the plural form of the name also attests. Grimm reconciles the two statements by describing Modin as a iooju.o;roAis [koomopolis].

2. History.[edit]

The interest in Modin arises from its association with the Maccabaean history. The place is not named in MT (though curiously enough Porphyry on Dan 11:38 read Modiim for the difficult triya. See Jer. ad loc. ). We first hear of Modin in 168 B.C. ; it became the residence of Mattathias, when he felt it no longer safe or honourable to remain in Jerusalem (1 Mace. 2:1). By Simon's time Modin was the special city of the Hasmonaeans (rrf trarpidi, Jos. Ant. 13:6:6); but even in Mattathias's day it must have been the permanent home, not merely the temporary asylum, of the family; Mattathias (1 Macc. 2:17) is termed 'a ruler and an honourable and great man in this city'. From another passage (1 M. 2:70) it appears that the sepulchres of Mattathias's ancestors were situated in Modin.

Modin was the scene of the outbreak of the revolt against Antiochus IV. Epiphanes. Here it was that Mattathias was summoned by a Syrian officer to follow the general example and offer a pagan sacrifice. He refused, and his slaying of an apostate Jew at the altar erected in Modin was the first act of armed rebellion ( 1 Macc. 2:15-28). Mattathias then fled from Modin; but the place was not garrisoned by the Syrian forces, for, on his death shortly afterwards, his sons buried him there (1 Macc. 2:70, Jos. Ant. 12:6:4). Modin is again mentioned in 2 Macc. 18:14. Judas Maccabaeus is there reported to have fixed his headquarters at Modin before his victorious night attack on the army of Antiochus V. Eupator. When Judas subsequently fell in battle at Elasa his body was recovered by his brothers Jonathan and Simon, and buried at Modin ( 1 Macc. 9:19, Jos. Ant. 12:6:2). Simon rendered a similar service to Jonathan (1 Macc. 13:25) and he erected in Modin a splendid monument to his illustrious family (13:27-30). See below 3.

At Modin Judas and John, sons of Simon, passed the night before making their successful attack on Cendebaeus (1 Macc. 16:4) whose headquarters were at Cedron (Katra) in the Philistine lowlands. In Rabbinic times Modin was regarded (Mishna, Pesahim 9:2) as fixing the legal limit of distance with regard to the injunction in Nu. 9:10. Rabbi Akiba held that any Jew who happened to be as distant from Jerusalem as Modin might be regarded as on a journey afar off. The Bab. Talmud (Pesahim 93b) explains that this distance was 15 mi. In another case of ritual law Modiith is cited by the Mishna (Hag. 3:5), and from this passage it has been inferred by some Rabbinical authorities that the city or district of Modin was the centre of the pottery industry.

A Rabbi Eleazar of Modin (contemp. with Akiba, 2nd cent. A.D.) is quoted with respect in the Mishnah (Aboth 8) and Talmud (T. B. Shabbath 556, Baba Bathra 10b). He is some times designated simply Ham-modai or Ham-mudai 'the man of Modin'. (Clermont-Ganneau found that the modern ethnic name of the inhabitants of Medyeh is Midnawy, pi. Medawneh.)

3. Simon's mausoleum.[edit]

The monument which Simon erected (see above) was lofty, of polished stone behind and before. Seven pyramids, over against one another, commemorated Simon's father, his mother, and his four brothers ; the remaining one being designed for himself. Stanley (Jewish Church, 3 318) describes the mausoleum as a square structure surrounded by colonnades of monolith pillars. The pyramids were ornamented with bas-reliefs of weapons. 1 Mindful of the commercial use to which the Phosnician coast was put by the Maccabaeans, Simon added carvings of ships eis TO #eu>pet<r#ai VTTO iravriav rtav TrAeoi Tioi TTJC 0aAao-<ra>>. This phrase is commonly rendered 'that they should be seen of all that sail on the sea'. As the sea is at least 13 mi. from Medyeh (and farther still from any other site with which Modin has been identified) this statement has given considerable trouble. Josephus, it may be observed, omits this detail (Ant. 13:6:6). Commentators explain, 'only in its main outlines, and not in its minor features could this monument be visible from the Mediterranean' (Camb. Bib., ad lac.). But the association of the 'ships' with the 'seafarers' raises some difficulty against accepting this theory. E. le Camus {Rev. Biblique, 1109, 1892), explains the Greek to mean that the ships were so naturally carved that they won the admiration of expert seamen. This is certainly ingenious, and Buhl (Pal. 198) adopts the theory of Le Camus on this point though he contests the same writer s other objections to the identification of Modin with Medyeh. The writer of 1 Macc, (about 100 B.C.) tells us that the monument was standing in his day, and Josephus repeats the assertion nearly two centuries later. Eusebius and Jerome also seem to declare that the monument was still intact, though the language they use is not conclusive. (As the passage from the Onomast. is of importance for the discussion that follows it is cited in full : M(i>5cei /, Ktani\ TrArjcrt oi AiotTTroAeojs, o6tv j\cra.v oi MaKxa/Saioi, a>i> icai TO. /u.i ij.ic.aTa ei? en vuv SeiKvvvra.i. Modeim vicus juxta Diospolitn, unde fuerunt Maccabai, quorum hodieque ibidem sepulchra monstrantur.) Supposed remains of the monument have been shown at Soba, while Guerin in 1870 created some sensation by claiming to have discovered the Mausoleum at Kh. el-Gherbfiwi in the neighbourhood of Medyeh. The structure so identified by him was, however, shown by Clermont-Ganneau to be of Christian origin. There is certainly nothing at Medyeh above ground or (as yet) excavated that in the slightest degree resembles the description in 1 Macc.

1 [It may be noted that for Trvpajui Sas [pyramidos] the Syr. has naphsatha, perhaps 'grave-stones', and nwai tjjuaTa [mechanemata] may have been simply machines for raising the pillars.]

4. Geographical position.[edit]

The geographical position of Modin cannot be determined with absolute certainty. Soba, about 6 mi. W. of Jerusalem, was long identified with Modin ; but this identification has nothing but a late tradition in its favour. The proposal of Robinson (BR^i^f. ; cp, on Soba, ibid. 26) to locate Modin at Latrun has won little support. It is now very commonly believed that the village of el-Medyeh marks the site of the old home of the Hasmonaeans (Conder, PEFMIv^ 341-352; C. Clermont-Ganneau, Arch. Res. in Pal. 2359). The identification was first proposed by Em. Forner in 1866, and a little later by Neubauer (Gdog. du Talmud, 1868, p. 99), and by Sandreczki (1869), who located the mausoleum at the Kabur el-Yahud, a little to the SW. of Medyeh. El-Medyeh is a large village a little off the old Roman road which passed from Jerusalem to Lydda through the two Bethhorons (see EPHRAIM, map ; Midieh). It is about 16 mi. NW. of Jerusalem, and 6.5 mi. from Lydda. The village proper is separated on three sides from higher ground ; to the W. lie several ruins, among them the Kh. Midyeh, Kh. el-Himmam, and especially the Sheikh el-Gharbawi where Guerin erroneously thought in 1870 that he had discovered the Maccabaean Mausoleum. ( La Samarie, 2:401 ; Galilee, 1 , 47. ) South of the village is a conical knoll called er-Ras, ( 'the head' ), about 700 ft. high, and this has been taken by Conder and others as the most likely spot for Simon s monument. Er-Ras has the appearance of having been artificially cut. The village is shut in by the surrounding heights ; but there is a fine view obtainable from er-Ras, and Jaffa and the sea are clearly seen. From the sea the bare outlines of Simon's monument would have been visible when the sun was behind the observer.

There are many tombs in the neighbourhood, deeply cut in the rock, the openings covered with great stones. Nothing has so far come to light, however, to suit the description in 1 Macc. ; hence it may be said, that a personal visit to Medyeh, while revealing no valid objection to its identification with Modin, does not produce a sense of absolute conviction. Medyeh certainly fulfils all the other requirements. Though we must eliminate the condition of visibility from the sea, Modin probably stood on a hill. It is unlikely that Simon would have erected a monument, meant to be conspicuous, unless it was so situated as to be clearly seen from afar. Moreover, the most natural inference from 1 Mace. 16:4 is that Modin stood near the plain, but not in it. Medyeh admirably suits this inference. The statement of the Talmud that Modin was 15 mi. from Jerusalem, and the assertion of the Onomast. that Modin was near Lydda, both support the claims of Medyeh. The identity of name is also a weighty support. Clermont-Ganneau (PEFQ, 1897, p. 221) asserts the general rule that the Aramaic termination -itha becomes regularly -ie in Arabic. Hence Mta&ida [moditha] (see i) would be represented by the Arabic Medie (pronounced, according to Ganneau, Meudie). (The present writer, when in Judaea in 1898, came across an Arab in Jerusalem who suggested as the site of Modin a high hill just above 'Amwas. his hill is locally known as Medemneh. An examination of the site revealed some, but very few, ruins of ancient buildings.) Le Camus (loc. cit.) objects to the identification of Modin with Medyeh :

  • (a) that Medyeh was in Dan, not Judaea,
  • (b) that 1 Mace. 16:4-10 requires a more southerly position than Medyeh, and
  • (c) that Medyeh is not sufficiently central to have formed the headquarters of the revolt.

These arguments are none of them conclusive. i. A.


(M6oe6), 1 Esd. 8:63 = Ezra 8:33, NOADIAH (1).


(i"n?1D ; usually MCoA&AA). a place in S. Judah towards Edom mentioned in

  • (a) Josh. 15:26 MooA<\A& [A],
  • (b) Josh. 19:2, KCoAAA&M [BA], .A&M [B b per ras], /vuoA&A&M [B a l vid -> " ] ;
  • (c) 1 Ch. 4:28, MCOAAA* [B], MOyAAAA [I-] ;
  • (d) Neh. 11:26 (BX*A om. ).

The notice in (c), however, is admitted to be derived from (ft), and the words 'and Shema and Moladah' in (a) are an interpolation (see SHEMA) from Neh. 11:26 (see Bennett, SBOT 'Joshua' ). The two remaining passages (b and d) tell us this - that Moladah was first Simeonite, then Judahite (see Sta. G17, ib. 154), and that it was in the neighbourhood of Shema or Sheba and Beersheba. Originally it was probably Jerahmeelite, as its name appears to indicate (see MOLID). Moladah is very possibly the Malatha or Malaatha in Idumaea, to the 'tower' of which Agrippa at one time retired (Jos. Ant. xviii. 62). Respecting this Malatha, Eus. and Jer. tell us (OS 8722, 214:55, 119:27 , 250:78, 133:3, 266:42) that it was 4 R. mi. from Arad and hard by Ether (Jattir). If this statement is correct, it is fatal to the identification (in itself phonetically difficult) of Moladah with Kh. el-Milh (13 mi. E. of Beersheba), which has been adopted from Robinson (BR 262if.) by Guerin, Miihlau, and Socin (cp SALT, CITY OK). The fortress of Malatha seems to have been entirely razed. The ruin of Derejas or Darejat, on the slopes and summit of a knoll, with caverns* referred to by Buhl (Pal. 183), seems too insignificant. It is, however, in the right district, being NW. of Tell Ardd towards A ttir. Cp JERAHMEEL, 2. T. K. c.


i. (JYnS ISnS ; but some MSS, Ibn Ezra, and the moderns read JYi"lS~l3n, from v /"lSn, 'to dig'? only in plur. , cp Theodot. 4>&p4>Apco0 ; TOIC MATAIOIC [BNAQF]; Is. 2:20-21). The idolaters, say the commentators, will have to throw their idols into the holes burrowed by moles. The genus Talpa (mole) has not been found in Palestine ; but its place has been taken by the mole-rat, Spalax typhlus. Mole-rats are common about ruins and the outskirts of villages, etc. They are considerably larger than moles. Their eyes are completely covered by skin ; the ear conchs are small and the incisor teeth large and prominent. They form long burrows, sometimes 40 ft. in length and about 1 8 in. below the surface, in which they live gregariously, seldom, if ever, coming to the surface. The objection is (1) that the existence of a word 32fin, 'moles', is uncertain, and (2) that the common view makes a miserable sense. One can hardly doubt that there is a textual corruption, and that the 'moles' and 'bats' have to disappear. Read 'In that day men shall cast away the idols of silver and gold which the Jerahmeelites (o ^HDm*) made for them to worship' ; cp v. 6, where D l ne > r i B, as usual, is a popular corruption of D nnx, 'Zarephathites' (often a synonym for 'Jerahmeelites' ; see PELETHITES).

2. In Lev. 11:30 occurs rcs^n, which is now generally explained 'chameleon' (see LIZARD, 6). Onk., however, gives JtmC Nt 'the mole', with which LXX, Vg. ([d]cr7roAaf, talpa) agree. Did LXX, Onk., read in this passage nr (or rc ; N)? In v. 18 tnn evidently means some kind of bird, and it is unlikely that this name was really given to animals belonging to quite different categories. It is noteworthy that Tg. reads nc- N, 'mole', instead of MT's ne>N, in Ps. 58:9 (see OWL, 1 [c]).

3. On the proposed rendering MOLE for "l/h in Lev. 11:29, see WEASEL. T. K. C. A. E. S.