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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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ברזל ; occurs first in Genesis 4:22 , and afterward frequently; and the Chaldee פרזל , in Daniel 2:33 ; Daniel 2:41 , and elsewhere often in that book; σιδηρος , Revelation 18:12 , and the adjectives, Acts 12:10 ; Revelation 2:27 ; Revelation 9:9 ; Revelation 12:5 ; Revelation 19:15 ; a well known and very serviceable metal. The knowledge of working it was very ancient, as appears from Genesis 4:22 . We do not, however, find that Moses made use of iron in the fabric of the tabernacle in the wilderness, or Solomon in any part of the temple at Jerusalem. Yet, from the manner in which the Jewish legislator speaks of iron, the metal, it appears, must have been in use in Egypt before his time. He celebrates the great hardness of it, Leviticus 26:19 ; Deuteronomy 28:23 ; Deuteronomy 28:48 ; takes notice that the bedstead of Og, king of Bashan, was of iron, Deuteronomy 3:11 ; he speaks of mines of iron, Deuteronomy 8:9 ; and he compares the severity of the servitude of the Israelites in Egypt to the heat of a furnace for melting iron, Deuteronomy 4:20 . We find, also, that swords, Numbers 35:16 , axes, Deuteronomy 19:5 , and tools for cutting stones, Deuteronomy 27:5 , were made of iron. By the "northern iron,"

Jeremiah 15:12 , we may probably understand the hardened iron, called in Greek χαλυψ , from the Chalybes, a people bordering on the Euxine sea, and consequently lying on the north of Judea, by whom the art of tempering steel is said to have been discovered. Strabo speaks of this people by the name of Chalybes, but afterward Chaldaei; and mentions their iron mines. These, however, were a different people from the Chaldeans, who were united with the Babylonians.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Iron'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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