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Bible Dictionaries
Migdol

Holman Bible Dictionary

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(mihg' dahl) Transliteration of Hebrew word meaning, “tower, watchtower, fortress.” A town or a border fortress located in the northeast corner of Egypt. The site is mentioned in reference to two events in biblical history—the Exodus and the Exile. One of the sites on or near the route of the Exodus, Migdol was located near the sites of Pi-hahiroth and Baal-Zephron, all of which were near the sea (Exodus 14:20 . Jewish refugees fled to Migdol during the Exile (Jeremiah 44:1 ). The coming doom of Egypt at the hand of Nebuchadnezzar was to be proclaimed there (Jeremiah 46:13-14 ). Ezekiel prophesied that the land of Egypt would be laid waste, “from Migdol to Aswan” (Ezekiel 29:10; Ezekiel 30:6 NIV), that is from the northern extremity of the land, Migdol, to the southern extremity of the land, Aswan.

Since migdol could be used as a proper name, Migdol, or as a common noun, “tower,” two questions remain unresolved. What is the exact location of the site of Migdol? Do all of the references to Migdol refer to the same site, or was there more than one site in Egypt named Migdol? More than one site may have borne the name Migdol, though the evidence we have at hand is inconclusive. The Amarna Letters from Egypt refer to an Egyptian city named Maagdali, but information about its location is not given. See Amarna tell el. For instance a papyrus manuscript mentions the Migdol of Pharoah Seti I. This Migdol was located near Tjeku, the location of which is still debated. Some prefer to identify Tjeku with Succoth, modern-day tell el-Maskhutah, while others identify it with tell el-Her located further north near Pelusium. For this reason we may assume with some certainty that there were at least two sites named Migdol: the Migdol referred to by Jeremiah and Ezekiel located near Pelusium, and the Migdol on the route of the Exodus located near Succoth. Both may have been part of a line of border fortresses or migdols designed to provide protection for Egypt against invasion from the Sinai. See Watchtower, Egypt.

LaMoine DeVries

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Migdol'. Holman Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​hbd/​m/migdol.html. 1991.
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