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Fish

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

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FISH would appear to have always been a favourite article of diet among the Hebrews ( Numbers 11:5 and references in the Gospels), as it is to-day. Fish are found in enormous numbers in all the inland waters of Palestine, and especially in the Lake of Galilee, Lake Huleh, and the ‘meadow lakes’ of Damascus. The extraordinary feature of these fish is the number of species peculiar to the Jordan valley. Out of a total of 43 species found in the region, no fewer than 14 are peculiar to this district. Many of these are quite small. The chief edible fish are members of the Chromides and of the Cyprinidæ (carps). The cat-fish, Clarias macracanthus , not being a scaly fish, cannot be eaten by the Jews ( Deuteronomy 14:9 ), though considered a delicacy by the Christians of Damascus. It is thought by some to be the ‘bad fish’ of Matthew 13:47-48 . In NT times fish-curing was extensively carried on at Taricheæ on the Lake of Tiberias. Some of the native fish is still salted to-day. The ‘ fish -pools’ of Song of Solomon 7:4 and the ‘ponds for fish ’ in Isaiah 19:10 are both mistranslations. See also Food, § 6 .

E. W. G. Masterman.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Fish'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​hdb/​f/fish.html. 1909.
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