בהמות

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Aramaic[edit]

Noun[edit]

בהמות ‎(transliteration neededm

  1. behemoth

Hebrew[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology[edit]

In form it is a plural of בהמה, but in Job 40:15-24 the word is accompanied by verbs and adjectives in the singular (describing a big and powerful beast).

This fact can be explained either be assuming a pluralis excellentiae, a method of expressing greatness by pluralizing a noun, or by assuming a word in the singular.

The first approach is taken by the Septuagint (θηρία ‎(thēría)) and by the Targum (בעיריא), both translating the word as “beasts”.

The second approach is taken by the Midrash (Leviticus Rabbah 13:3), describing the בהמות as a great beast, and probably also by the Peshitta, transliterating the word rather then translating it: ܒܗܡܘܬ.

It has been suggested by modern scholars to be loanword from Egyptian peḥemau, an unattested word that would have ment “ox of the water”, i.e. hippopotamus.

Noun[edit]

בְּהֵמוֹת ‎(behemótm

  1. (Biblical Hebrew) Meaning unknown, perhaps a water ox, that is, the hippopotamus or Nile horse.
  2. behemoth, a great and mighty beast.

References[edit]