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Bible Encyclopedias

The 1901 Jewish Encyclopedia

Ariel

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—Biblical Data:

1. Proper name of a man ( Ezra 8:16 ). The name is recognizable in the name of the Gadite clan Areli (Genesis 46:16 Numbers 26:17 , Ariel in LXX.), and occurs also in 2Samuel 23:20 , R. V., and in 1Chronicles 11:22 , R. V. The text is corrupt. LXX. in Samuel has "two sons of Ariel" Targ. "two mighty men." Proposed emendations are: "two lions (or, lion whelps)" or "two sons of Uriel." The reference may be to persons or to beasts. Form and meaning are uncertain. Suggested interpretations are: "lion of God," or, by change of vowel, "light of God," or "God is my light." 2. Poetic name for Jerusalem (Isaiah 29:1,2 , 7), variously explained (Targ. "altar"). The illustration in verse 2 ("Ariel . . . shall be unto me as Ariel," the city shall reek with blood, like an altar) suggests that the second "Ariel" equals "altar" or "altar hearth" so probably in Ezekiel 43:15,16 , and in the inscription of Mesha, line 12. For a proposed sense, "cresset" or "candelabrum," see note on Ezekiel 40:49 in "Sacred Books of the O. T." (ed. Haupt). The etymology of the word is uncertain, possibly , "hearth," with ל formative. The name of the city will then be an imitation of the name "Jerusalem" (perhaps properly Urushalem , "city of Shalem"), "city of God" (Uriel or Uruel). It is otherwise interpreted as "altar-hearth of God" that is, the place devoted to the worship of God.

J. Jr. T.

—In Rabbinical Literature:
The name Ariel ("Lion of God") was applied not only to the altar (Targum, Isaiah 29:1 ), but also to the whole Temple. The Talmud (Mid. 4:7) points out that the Temple— that is, the Hekal — resembled a lion in being broad in front and tapering toward the rear. Concerning the name Ariel, a Midrash remarks that the Temple is called "lion" (Isa. l.c. ), and so also is the house of David (Ezekiel 19:2-7 ) and Judah (Genesis 49:9 ). Nebuchadnezzar, likewise, is called "lion" (Jeremiah 4:7 ) and it was this lion that destroyed the Temple, deposed the house of David, and carried Judah into captivity (Ex. R. 29:9 ).J. Sr. L. G.
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Bibliography Information
Singer, Isidore, Ph.D, Projector and Managing Editor. Entry for 'Ariel'. 1901 The Jewish Encyclopedia. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/tje/a/ariel.html. 1901.

Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, October 22nd, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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