Notes by Autumn Light

On Hebrew, English, translation, editing, and more—by Jonathan Orr-Stav


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What does the Leviathan symbolize in the Hebrew Bible?

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The Leviathan (לויתן) is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible on only a handful of occasions—in the Books of Isaiah, Psalms, and Job—as a generic sea monster, as a way of demonstrating God’s power in being able to create such a creature and to ‘play’ with it as though it were a pet:

לויתן זה, יצרת לשחק בו (Psalms 104:26)

(‘there is that leviathan, whom thou hast made to play therein’)

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