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Bible Encyclopedias
Abyss

The Catholic Encyclopedia

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(Greek abyssos).

Abyss is primarily and classically an adjective, meaning deep, very deep (Wisdom 10:19; Job 38:16). Elsewhere in the Bible, and once in Diog. Laert., it is a substantive. Some thirty times in the Septuagint it is the equivalent of the Hebrew tehom, Assyrian tihamtu, and once each of the Hebrew meculah, "sea-deep", culah, "deep flood", and rachabh, "spacious place". Hence the meanings: (1) primeval waters; (2) the waters beneath the earth; (3) the upper seas and rivers; (4) the abode of the dead, limbo; (5) the abode of the evil spirits, hell. The last two meanings are the only ones found in the New Testament.

Bibliography Information
Obstat, Nihil. Lafort, Remy, Censor. Entry for 'Abyss'. The Catholic Encyclopedia. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​a/abyss.html. Robert Appleton Company. New York. 1914.
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