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

גלה

The root-verb גלה (gala) means to uncover, remove or to go into exile, but these meanings diverge so much that HAW Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament suggests that there may be two separate roots at work in this verb.

The verb גלה (gala) denotes an uncovering of sensory organs such as the ear (1 Samuel 9:15) or eye (Numbers 24:4), indicating a propensity to hear or see. It may indicate the revealing of someone; a human person (1 Samuel 20:2) or God (2 Samuel 7:27), a secret (Amos 3:7) or a message (Esther 3:14). It may indicate indecent exposure (Exodus 20:26) or even the intent to commit immoral acts (Deuteronomy 22:30).

The secondary meaning of this verb (which may be a different verb altogether) denotes a removing (Ezekiel 12:3, Isaiah 24:11, Job 20:28) or going into exile (Amos 1:5, Jeremiah 13:19, Ezekiel 39:28).

One derivative of this root stems from the meaning of revealing something, namely:

  • The masculine noun גליון (gillayon), meaning table or tablet (Isaiah 8:1).

Two derivatives deal with captivity:

  • The feminine noun גולה (gola), meaning captivity or captive/ exile (Jeremiah 28:6).
  • The feminine noun גלות (gallut), also meaning captives and always covering a group of exiles (Isaiah 20:4).

Associated Biblical names

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