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Jackals איים

(443 words)

Author(s): B. Janowski
I. Name The noun ʾiyyîm, the plural of I אִי*, is attested in Isa. 13.22; Isa. 34.14 (1QIsa.a ʾyyʾmym [?]) and Jer. 50.39. It is generally derived either from Eg. jw or jwjw ‘dog’ (cf. Arab. ibn ʾāwā ‘jackal’) or from III אִי* (< אִיִּי*) ‘(ghostly) islander, beach demon, goblin’ ( HALAT 37; Ges.18 44). The ancient versions (LXX ὀνοκένταυροι, Vg. sirenes, onocentauri, fauni) imagine a tailless ape, or in a derived sense an impure demon. Even if the meaning of the word ʾiyyîm is controversial, nothing speaks against the assumption that a zoologically definable species can also be meant…

Satyrs שׂעירים

(1,052 words)

Author(s): B. Janowski
I. Name The word śĕʿîrîm, the plural of śăʿîr ‘hairy’ ( Gen. 27.11 and often), i.e. ‘(hairy) he-goat’ (over 50 examples, in addition to its synonyms ʿattûd ‘he-goat’, ṣāpîr and tayiš), describes a group of creatures which are usually identified as ‘hairy demons, satyrs’ ( Lev. 17.7; Isa. 13.21; Isa. 34.14; 2 Chr. 11.15; HALAT 1250; for older translations see Snaith 1975). The conjectured reading śĕʿîrîm for MT šĕʿārîm ‘gates’ in 2 Kgs. 23.8 is old ( BHS), but is to be rejected on the basis of current knowledge (Schroer 1987: 133 with n. 292). On śĕʿîrîm in Deut. 32.2 …

Wild Beasts ציים

(1,174 words)

Author(s): B. Janowski
I. Name ṣiyyîm, sg. ṣî (< צִיִּי*), is a plural derivative from the feminine noun ṣiyyâ, which appears as an adjective to ʾereṣ ‘land’ with the meaning ‘dry’ and as a noun with the meaning ‘dry land’ (cf. ṣāyôn Isa. 25.5; Isa. 32.2). The word is certainly attested only in Isa. 13.21; Isa. 34.14; and Jer. 50.39; it is possibly to be found in Pss. 72.9; Pss. 74.14 (for its reflection in the ancient versions see Müller 1989:990). In understanding the occurrence of ṣiyyîm in Isa. 23.13 its homonyms ṣiyyîm I ‘ships’ ( Num. 24.24; Isa. 33.21; Ezek. 30.9; Dan. 11.30) and ṣiyyîm II ‘dese…

Azazel עזאזל

(2,186 words)

Author(s): B. Janowski
I. Name Both the etymology and the meaning of the name ʿazāʾzēl, which appears in the Old Testament only in Lev. 16.8, Lev. 10 [twice], Lev. 26, are not completely clear. Although the etymological hypothesis ʿzʾzl < * ʿzzʾl < ʿzz (‘to be strong’) + ʾl (‘god’), i.e. the result of a consonantal metathesis, appears to be the most likely explanation (Janowski & Wilhelm 1993:128 with n. 98, cf. the form ʿzzʾl in 4Q 180, 1:8; 11QTemple 26:13f etc., see Tawil 1980:58–59), the meaning of the name ʿzʾzl remains controversial. In the main the following possibilities are under discussion (cf. also HALAT…