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Abarim Publications' Biblical Dictionary: The Hebrew word: עקב
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Abarim Publications' online Biblical Hebrew Dictionary

עקב

Formally it's not quite certain where the noun עקב ('aqeb) comes from but some scholars suggest from an unused verb that means to be protuberant. But the meaning of the noun becomes clear from its applications in the Bible. It seems that the basic idea of this word is anything last of lowest. It may denote the hoofs of horses (Genesis 49:17) but also a man's buttocks (Jeremiah 13:22). It means the rear of a troop (Genesis 49:19) or the print of one's foot (Psalm 89:51).

Its sibling derivatives are:

  • The verb עקב ('abaq), meaning to follow at the heel, assail, circumvent, supplant (Genesis 25:26, Jeremiah 9:3, Job 37:4).
  • The adjective עקב ('aqeb, which is spelled and pronounced identical to the verb), meaning overreacher. This adjective occurs only in Psalm 49:5; the iniquity of my overreachers or supplanters, as the NAS has it.
  • The adjective עקב ('aqob), meaning insidious or deceitful (Jeremiah 17:9) or quite literally: showing footprints (Hosea 6:8).
  • The adjective עקב ('aqob), meaning steep or hilly (Isaiah 40:4).
  • The feminine noun עקבה ('aqeba), meaning deceitfulness (2 Kings 10:19).
  • The masculine noun עקב ('eqeb), meaning consequence or because (Isaiah 5:23, Psalm 19:11, Psalm 119:33).

Associated Biblical names

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