Deber דבר
(464 words)

I. Name

The accepted meaning ‘pestilence’ may be a specific Hebrew development with scarce support from other Semitic languages (cf. Ug. dbr ‘pestilence’ [?], Ar. dabr ‘death’, dabara ‘ulcer’); Akk. dibiru ‘misfortune, calamity’ is probably a Sumerian word, having no connexion with Hebr deber (CAD D. 134–135). Deber is one of the three proverbial causes of death on a wide scale. It is attested some 50 times in the Bible along with war (sword, blood) and famine (mainly…

Cite this page
G. del Olmo Lete, “Deber דבר”, 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 15 January 2019 <>

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