Harness occurs in several senses in the Eng. Vers. as the rendering of different Heb. words.

1. אָסָר (asar', prop. to bind, as it is generally rendered) is sometimes applied to the act of fastening animals to a cart or vehicle, e.g. yoking kine (1Sa 6:7,10, "tie") or horses (Jer 46:4, "harness"), gearing a chariot (Ge 46:29; Ex 14:6; 2Ki 9:21, "make ready"), or absolutely (1Ki 18:44; 2Ki 9:21, 'prepare"). From the monuments we see that the harness of the Egyptian war-chariots was composed of leather, and the trappings were richly decorated, being stained with a great variety of colors, and studded with gold and silver. SEE CHARIOT.

2. In the old English sense for armor (נֵשֶׁק or נֶשֶׁק ne'shek, warlike accoutrements, elsewhere "armor,""weapons,"etc.), 2Ch 9:24. SEE ARMOR.

Definition of harness

3. In a like sense for שַׁריָן (shiryan', 1Ki 22:34; 2Ch 18:33), a coat of mail ("breastplate," Isa 59:17). SEE ARMOR.

4. "Harnessed"(חֲמֻשַׁים, chamushim', from חָמִשׁ in the sense of being fierce for battle) is the expression used to represent the equipped condition of the Israelites as they passed out of Egypt (Ex 13:18, "armed," Jos 1:14; Jos 4:1-2; Jg 7:11), and seems to denote their orderly and intrepid disposal as if to meet a foe (the ancient versions interpret generally full-armed). (See Gesenius, Lex. s.v.)

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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