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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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The Hebrew pi answers to the modern Arabic word fum, signifying "mouth;" and is generally applied to the passes in the mountains. In the English and Septuagint versions, Hahiroth is taken as a proper name; and the whole word would imply the mouth or pass of Hahiroth or Hiroth, whatever particular origin or signification may belong to that word. The name, however, sufficiently explains the situation of the children of Israel; who were hemmed in at this place, between the sea in front, and a narrow mountain pass behind; which no doubt encouraged Pharaoh to make his attack upon them in so disadvantageous a position; thinking that they must inevitably fall an easy prey into his hands, or be cut to pieces: when their deliverance, and his own destruction, were unexpectedly wrought by the parting of the waters of the sea. The place where this miracle is supposed to have happened, is still called Bahral- Kolsum, or the Sea of Destruction; and just opposite to the situation which answers to the opening called Pi-hahiroth, is a bay, where the north cape is called Ras Musa, or the Cape of Moses. That part of the western or Heroopolitan branch of the Red Sea where, from these coincidences, the passage most probably took place, is described by Bruce as about three leagues over, with fourteen fathoms of water in the channel, nine at the sides, and good anchorage every where. The farther side is also represented as a low sandy coast, and an easy landing place. See RED SEA .

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

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