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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Bullock (2)

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is a frequent translation of the following Heb. words: properly פִּר or פָּר, par, strictly a steer, often with the addition (in the original) of the qualifying clause, בֶּן בָּקָר, son of a beeve, rendered "young" in our version; שׁוֹר, shor, Chaldee תּוֹר, tor (Gr. ταῦρος ), usually rendered "ox;" and עֵגֶל, e'gel, Jeremiah 21:18; Jeremiah 46:21; elsewhere "calf." (See BULL). The word "bullock," indeed, seems to be used almost changeably in the Auth. Vers. with the term "ox," to designate a male of the beeve kind; but the following distinctions of the Heb. terms may properly be indicated. (See CATTLE).

1. BAKAR', בָּקָר, is properly a generic name for horned cattle when of full age and fit for the plough. Accordingly, it is variously rendered "bullock" (Isaiah 65:25), "cow" (Ezekiel 4:15), "oxen" (Genesis 12:16). Hence, in Deuteronomy 21:3, the female young (בָּקָר עֶגְלִת ) is a heifer; in Exodus 29:1, the male young (פִּר בֶּןאּבָּקָר, or in Genesis 18:7, simply בֶּןאּבָּקָר, rendered "calf" in the A. V.) is a young bullock. This word is derived from an unused root, בָּקִר, bakar', to cleave, hence to plough, as in Latin armentum is for aramentum.

2. SHOR, שׁוֹר, differs from the foregoing term it the same way as שֶׁה, a sheep, from צֹאן, a flock of sheep. It is a generic name, but almost always signifies one head of horned cattle, without distinction of age or sex. It is very seldom used collectively. The Chaldee form of the word tor, תּוֹר, occurs in Ezra 6:9; Ezra 6:17; Ezra 7:17; Daniel 4:25, etc. (Plutarch, Sull. c. 17, says Θὼρ οὶ Φοίνικες τὴν βοῦν καλοῦσι ). It is probably the same word as ταῦρος, taurus, Germ. stier, Engl. steer. The root in Hebrew is not used, but in Arabic signifies to paw up the dust, a very natural derivation of the word.

3. E'GEL, עֵגֶל (fem. עֶגְלָה ), a calf properly of the first year, derived, as Gesenius thinks, from an A Ethiopic word signifying embryo, while others derive it from עָגִל, agal', to roll. The (fem.) word is used of a trained heifer (Hosea 10:11), of one giving milk (Isaiah 7:21-22), of one used in ploughing (Judges 14:18), and of one three years old (Genesis 15:9).

4. PAR, פִּר, almost synonymous with the last, and signifying generally a young bull of two years old, though in one instance (Judges 6:25) possibly a bull of seven years old. It is the customary term for bulls offered in sacrifice, and hence is used metaphorically in Hosea 14:3, "so will we render, as bullocks,' our lips." (See OX).


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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Bullock (2)'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/tce/b/bullock-2.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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