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Bible Encyclopedias
East Wind

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

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( קָדַים , prop. the east [as often rendered], i.e., eastern quarter; hence elliptically for the wind from that direction, Job 27:21; Isaiah 27:8; Jeremiah 18:17; Ezekiel 29:26; the full expression רוּחִ קָדַים . It also occurs, Exodus 10:13-14; Exodus 10:21; Psalms 48:8; Ezekiel 17:10). This is in Scripture frequently referred to as a wind of considerable strength, and also of a peculiarly dry, parching, and blighting nature. In Pharaoh's dream the thin ears of corn are represented as being blasted by an east wind, as, in a later age, Jonah's gourd was withered and himself scorched by "a vehement east wind' (Genesis 41:6; Jonah 4:8); and often in the prophets, when a blighting desolation is spoken of, it is associated with the east wind, either as the instrumental cause or as a lively image of the evil (Ezekiel 17:10; Ezekiel 19:12; Hosea 13:15; Habakkuk 1:9, etc.). This arose from the fact that in Egypt, Palestine, and the lands of the Bible generally, the east wind, or a wind more or less from an eastern direction, blows over burning deserts, and consequently is destitute of the moisture which is necessary to promote vegetation. In Egypt it is rather a south-east than an east wind, which is commonly found most injurious to health and fruitfulness; but this also is familiarly called an east wind, and it often increases to great violence. Ukert thus sums up the accounts of modern travelers on the subject: "In the spring the south wind oftentimes springs up towards the south-east, increasing to a whirlwind. The heat then seems insupportable, although the thermometer does not always rise very high. As long as the south-east wind continues, doors and windows are closed, but the fine dust penetrates everywhere; everything dries up; wooden vessels warp and crack. The thermometer rises suddenly from 16- 20° up to 30-36 degrees, and even 38 degrees of Reaumur. This wind works destruction upon everything. The grass withers, so that it entirely perishes if this wind blows long" (Geogr. page 111). It is stated by another traveler, Wansleb, with special reference to the strong east wind employed on the occasion of the passage of the Israelites through the Red Sea which took place shortly after Easter: "From Easter to Pentecost is the most stormy part of the year, for the wind commonly blows during this time from the Red Sea, from the east" (see in Hengstenberg's Egypt and the Books of Moses, page 9 sq). There is nothing therefore, in the scriptural allusions to this wind which is not fully borne out by the reports of modern travelers; alike by sea and by land it is now, as it has ever been, an unwelcome visitant, and carries along with it many disagreeable effects. (See WIND).

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'East Wind'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​e/east-wind.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.
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