Doleful Creatures

Doleful creatures (אֹחַים, ochim', prop. shrieks, hence howling animals; Sept. ῏ηχος, noise, Vulg. dracones, dragons) is thought by most to be a general name for howlers, or screech-owls, which the prophet predicts will occupy the desolate palaces of Babylon (Isa 13:21). SEE OWL. As the parallelism requires some animal inhabiting ruins and uttering a disconsolate cry to be understood, the Rabbins (with Abulwalid) understand the marten, or kind of weasel (comp. Hitzig, in loc.), which has a clear, short, plaintive voice (Bechstein, Naturgesch. 1:28). But the owl is more probable, as it is well known for this peculiarity (comp. gemere, Pliny, 10:16; queri, Virg. AEn. 4:462). SEE OCHIM.

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