Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible Online

Get access

Curse אלה
(2,285 words)

I. Name

Some scholars have contended that in ancient Israel ‘curse’ (ʾālâ) was conceived of as a kind of demonic force that could invade the land or take over a person’s being. Although curse could on occasion be personified, there is little evidence from the Bible that curse was thought to be a self-acting force. This is true not only for the root ʾlh but also for vocables from other roots used to express curses in the OT (notably ʾrr, qll, qbb, and Šbʿ). Etymologically the root ʾlh is cognate with Ar. ʾlw (IV), ‘to …

Cite this page
B. F. Batto, “Curse אלה”, in: Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible Online, Edited by: Karel van der Toorn, Bob Becking, Pieter W. van der Horst. Consulted online on 26 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2589-7802_DDDO_DDDO_Curse>

▲   Back to top   ▲