Old Testament Hebrew Lexical Dictionary
Strong's #5035 - נֵבֶל
1) a skin-bag, jar, pitcher
1a) skin-bottle, skin
1b) jar, pitcher (earthen)
2) harp, lute, guitar, musical instrument
Nm) lbn (נבל NBL) - I. Pitcher:For flowing of liquids. II. Fool:In the sense of fading away. III. Nevel:A musical instrument in the sense of flowing music. KJV (56): psalteries, bottle, viol, flagon, pitcher, vessel, fool, foolish, vile - Strongs: H5035 (נֵבֶל), H5036 (נָבָל)
Jeff Brenner, Ancient Hebrew Research Center Used by permission of the author.
נֵבֶל & נֶבֶל plur. נְבָלִים, נִבְלֵי m.
(1) a skin bottle, so called from its flaccidity (see נָבֵל ). LXX. twice ἀσκός. Poet. Job 38:37, “the bottles of heaven,” i.e. the clouds, a metaphor of common use in Arabic.
As it was anciently the custom to use skin bottles for carrying or keeping water, milk, wine, etc., hence this name
(2) is applied to vessels for liquids of whatever kind, vessels, pitchers, flasks. Isaiah 30:14, נֶבֶל יֹצְרִים “a potter’s pitcher.” Lamentations 4:2, נִבְלֵי חֶרֶשׂ “earthen pitchers;” compare Jeremiah 13:12, 48:12.
More fully, plur. בְּלֵי נְבָלִים vessels of the kind of pitchers, Isaiah 22:24 opp. to הָאַגָּנוֹת basons.
(3) an instrument of music. Gr. νάβλα, ναύλα (נַבְלָא), Lat. nablium, see Strabo, x. p. 471; Casaub., Athen., iv. page 175; Casaub., Ovid., A. A. iii. 327; often connected with the harp (כִּנּוֹר), Psalms 57:9, 81:3 92:4 108:3 Isaiah 5:12; Amos 5:23, 6:5 pleon. כְּלִי נֶבֶל Psalms 71:22 plur. כְּלֵי נְבָלִים 1 Chronicles 16:5. Josephus (Antiqu., vii. 12, § 3 ) describes this instrument as a species of lyre, or harp, having twelve strings, and played on with the fingers (not with a plectrum), but the Hebrew words נֶבֶל עָשׂוֹר Psalms 33:2, 144:9, appear to indicate a ten stringed nabel. Jerome says that it was triangular in form like a Δ inverted (which was the form also of the sambuca, Vitruv. vi. 1); and perhaps it took its name from this circumstance: as water vessels, or cadii (see כַּד ), had the figure of a pyramid or cone.
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