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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Crystal

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There are several words which appear to have this meaning in the Bible. (See ICE); (See PEARL).

1. קֶרִח, ke'rach (properly ice, as it is rendered Job 6:16; Job 38:29; "frost," Genesis 31:40; Job 37:10; Jeremiah 36:30; Sept. κρύσταλλος ), occurs in Ezekiel 1:22, where the epithet "terrible" seems to be added by way of distinction from the ordinary signification of the word.

2. גָּבַישׁ, gabish' (properly ice; Sept. γαβίς ), occurs only in Job 28:18, where it is rendered "pearls" in our version.

3. זְכוּכַית, zekukith' (lit. what is pure or transparent; Sept. ὕαλος ), occurs only in Job 18:17, where some regard it as denoting glass.

4. Κρύσταλλος (prop. ice) occurs in Revelation 4:6; Revelation 21:11; Revelation 22:1, evidently in the sense of crystal, and in such connections as to identify it in a good degree with the preceding terms.

" Crystal was anciently held to be only pure water, congealed by great length of time into ice harder than the common (Diod. Sic. 2:52; Pliny Hist. Nat. 37:2), and hence the Greek word for it, in its more proper signification, also signifies ice. From this it necessarily followed that crystal could only be produced in the regions of perpetual ice, and this was accordingly the ancient belief; but we now know that it is founding the warmest regions. Theophrastus (54) reckons crystal among the pellucid stones used for engraved seals. In common parlance we apply the term crystal (as the ancients apparently did) to a glass-like transparent stone, commonly of a hexagonal form, which, from being found in rocks, is called by mineralogists rock-crystal. It is a stone of the flint family, the most refined kind of quartz." (See GLASS).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Crystal'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/c/crystal.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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