Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible Online

Get access Subject: Biblical Studies and Early Christianity
Edited by: Karel van der Toorn, Bob Becking and Pieter W. van der Horst

The Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible Online contains academic articles on the named gods, angels, and demons in the books of the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint and Apocrypha, as well as the New Testament and patristic literature. This online version contains the second extensively revised edition.

More information: Brill.com

Fire אשׁ

(493 words)

Author(s): W. G. E. Watson
I. Name The Hebrew word for ‘fire’, ʾēš, is common Semitic (with the exception of Arabic) but there is not a strong tradition of deified fire in the ancient Near East. Any echoes of this tradition in the Bible, therefore, are harder than usual to detect. In spite of an apparent similarity with the Semitic word for ‘fire’ and even some association with fire (Roberts 1972), the Babylonian god Išum was not a god of fire. However, dI-ʾša- tú does occur as a divine name in Ebla (Pettinato, OrAnt. 18 [1979] 105) and išt is a goddess in Ugaritic mythology. II. Identity The Ugaritic goddess išt, ‘fi…

First-Born of Death בכור מות

(2,218 words)

Author(s): T. J. Lewis
I. Name Though the deity Mot (‘Death’) occurs frequently in Canaanite and Israelite lore, the expression bĕkôr māwet (translated either ‘First Born of Death’ or ‘First Born Death’) occurs only in Job 18.13 in a context having to do with death and disease. The Hebrew term bĕkôr (fem bĕkîrâ) clearly refers to the first-born (human or animal) as does the majority of cognate terms (cf. Aram. bûkrāʾ, Ar. bikr, Eth. bakwr, OSA bkr, Ug. bkr). In contrast, the Akk. cognates bukru (‘son, child, offspring’) and bukurtu (‘daughter’) refer primarily to deities (rarely to humans) a…

Flame להב

(414 words)

Author(s): W. G. E. Watson
I. Name Three terms for ‘flame’ in Hebrew, lāhāb, lĕhābâ and šalhebet are all derivations from the same root, lhb. Another root is lhṭ, ‘to blaze up, flame’. ‘Flame’ has sometimes the traits of a deity in the Bible. II. Identity The only divine name for flame attested outside the Bible is d Na-ab-lum = sukkaldBIL.GI. kex(KID), ‘Flame’ = ‘vizier of the Fire-god’, in a Babylonian god-list (An = Anum II 342, cited CAD N/1, 26b). Less clear is the Babylonian god Erra (perhaps derived from *ḥrr, ‘to scorch, char’ [J. J. M. Roberts, JCS 24 (1971) 11–12]) associated with Išum (fire) in the E…


(9 words)

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