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Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblical Literature
Tracts of wood-land are mentioned by travelers in Palestine, but rarely what we should call a forest. The word translated by 'forest' does not necessarily mean more than 'wood-land.' There are, however, abundant intimations in Scripture that the country was in ancient times much more wooded than at present, and in parts densely so. The localities more particularly mentioned as woods or forests are—
1. The forest of cedars on Mount Lebanon (;; ), which must have been much more extensive formerly than at present.
The name of 'House of the Forest of Lebanon'is given in Scripture (; ) to a palace which was built by Solomon in, or not far from, Jerusalem, and which is supposed to have been so called on account of the quantity of cedar-trees employed in its construction; or, perhaps, because the numerous pillars of cedar-wood suggested the idea of a forest of cedar-trees.
2. The forest of oaks, on the mountains of Bashan. The trees of this region have been already noticed under Bashan.
3. The forest or wood of Ephraim, already noticed under Ephraim, 4.
4. The forest of Hareth, in the south of Judah, to which David withdrew to avoid the fury of Saul (). The precise situation is unknown.
Forest is used symbolically to denote a city, kingdom, polity, or the like (; ). Devoted kingdoms are also represented under the image of a forest, which God threatens to burn or cut down. See; , where the briers and thorns denote the common people; 'the glory of the forest' are the nobles and those of highest rank and importance. See also;;;;; .
Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Forest'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblical Literature". https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/kbe/f/forest.html.