Meni (Hebrews Meni', מנַי, from מָנָה, to distribute; Sept. τύχη, Vulg, i.e .fortuna, just mentioned, SEE GAD; Auth. Vers. "that number," marg. "Meni"), apparently an idol which the captive Israelites worshipped by libations (lectisternia), after the custom of the Babylonians (Isa 66:11), and probably symbolical of destiny (a sense indicated by the first clause of the next verse), like the Arabic mananfate (from the same root), and the Greek μοῖρα. Pococke (Specim. hist. Arab. p. 92) has pointed out the resemblance to Manat, an idol of the ancient Arabs (Koran, Sur. 53:19. 20), "What think ye of Allat, and AI-Uzzah, and Manah, that other third goddess?" Manah was the object of worship of "the tribes of Hudhey and Kuza'ah, who dwelt between Mekkeh and El-Medineh, and, as some say, of the tribes of Ows, EI-Khazraj, and Thakik also. This idol was a large stone, demolished by one Saad in the eighth year of the flight, a year so fatal to the idols of Arabia" (Lane's Sel. from the Kur-an, pref. p. 30, 31). But Al-Zamakhshari, the commentator on the Koran derives Manah from a root signifying "to flow," because of the blood which flowed at the sacrifices to this idol, or, as Mill explains it, because the ancient idea of the moon was that it was a star full of moisture, with which it filled the sublunary regions. "That the word is a proper name, and also the proper name of an object of idolatrous worship cultivated by the Jews in Babylon, is a supposition which there seems no reason to question, as it is in accordance with the context, and has every probability to recommend it. But the identification of Meni with any known heathen god is still uncertain. The versions are at variance. In the Sept. the word is rendered 'fortune' or 'luck.' The old Latin version of the clause is 'impletis dcemoni potionem;' while Symmachus (as quoted by Jerome) must have had a different reading, מַנַּי, minni, ' without me,' which Jerome interprets as signifying that the act of worship implied in the drink-offering was not performed for God, but for the daemon (' ut doceat non sibi fieri sed daemoni). The Targum of Jonathan is very vague-' and mingle cups for their idols;' and the Syriac translators either omit the word altogether, or had a different reading, perhaps לָמוֹ, lamo, 'for them.' Some variation of the same kind apparently gave rise to the super eam of the Vulgate, referring to the 'table' mentioned in the first clause of the verse. From the old versions we come to the commentators, and their judgments are equally conflicting. Jerome :(Comm. in Es. 65:11) illustrates the passage by reference to an ancient idolatrous custom which prevailed in Egypt, and especially at Alexandria, on the last day of the last month of the year, of placing a table covered with dishes of various kinds, and a cup mixed with mead, in acknowledgment of the fertility of the past year, or as an omen of that which was to come (comp. Virgil, AEn. 2:763). But he gives no clue to the identification of Meni, and his explanation is evidently suggested by the renderings of the Sept. and the old Latin version; the former, as he quotes them, translating Gad by 'fortune,' and Meni by 'demon,' in which they are followed by the latter. In the later mythology of Egypt, as we learn from Macrobius (Saturn. 1:19), Δαίμων and Τύχη/ were two of the four deities who presided over birth, and represented respectively the Sun and Moon. A passage quoted by Selden (De Dis Syris, i, c. 1) from a MS. of Vettius Valens of Antioch, an ancient astrologer, goes also to prove that in the astrological language of his day the sun and moon were indicated by δαίμων and τύχη, as being the arbiters of human destiny. This circumstance, coupled with the similarity between Meni and Μήν or Μήνη), the ancient name for the moon, has induced the majority of commentators to conclude that Meni is the Moon god or goddess, the Deus Lunus, or Dea Luna of the Romans; masculine as regards the earth which she illumines (terrce maritus), feminine with respect to the sun (solis uxor), from :whom she receives her light. This twofold character of the moon is thought by David Mill to be indicated in the two names Gad and Meni, the former feminine, the latter masculine (Diss. v, § 23); but as both are masculine in Hebrew, his speculation falls to the ground. Le Moyne, on the other hand. regarded both words as denoting the sun, and his double worship among the Egyptians: Gad is then the goat of Mendes, and Meni =Mnevis worshipped at Heliopolis. The opinion of Huetius that the Meni- of Isaiah and the Μήν of Strabo (xii, c. 31) both denoted the sun, was refuted by Vitringa and others. Among those who have interpreted the word literally ' number' may be reckoned Jarchi and Abarbanel, who understand by it the 'number' of the priests that formed the company of revellers at the feast, and later Hoheisel (Obs. ad. diffc. Jes. loca, p. 349) followed in the same track. Kimchi, in his note on Isa 65:11, says ofMeni, 'It is a-star, and some interpret it of the stars which are numbered, and they are. the seven stars of motion,' i.e. the planets. Buxtorf (Lex. Hebr.) applies it to the 'number' of the stars which were worshipped as gods; Schindler (Lex. Pentagl.) to the ' number and multitude' of the idols, while according to others it refers to ' Mercury, the. god of numbers;' all which are mere conjectures, quot homines, tot sententice, and take their origin from the play upon the word Meni, which is found in the verse next following that in which it occurs ('therefore will I number [וּמָנַיתַי, um- ninithi], you to the sword'), and which is supposed to point to its derivation from the verb מָנָה, manah, to number. But the origin of the name of Noah, as given in Genesis v. 29, shows that such plays upon words are not to be depended upon as the bases of etymology. On the supposition, however, that in this case the etymology of Meni is really indicated, its meaning is still uncertain. Those who understand by it the moon, derive an argument for their theory from the fact that anciently years were numbered by the courses of the moon." The fact of Meni being a Babylonian god renders it probable that some planet was worshipped under this name: but there is much diversity of opinion as to the particular planet to which the designation of destiny would be most applicable (see Lakemacher, Observ. philol. 4:18 sq.; David Mill's diss. on the subject in his Dissert. selectee, p. 81-132). Miinter considers it to be Venus (see Gesenius, Comment. ad loc.), as the lesser star of good fortune (the Naneea of the Persians [2 Macc. 1:13] or Anctis [Strabo, 15:733] of the Armenians [xi. 532.; 12:559]); Ewald takes it to be Saturn, the chief dispenser of evil influences; and Movers (Phonic. 1:650) has returned to the old opinion that Meni is the moon which was also supposed to be an arbitress of fortune: the best arguments for which last view are collected by Vitringa (ad loc.). It also deserves notice that there are some, among whom is Hitzig, who consider Gad and Meni to be names for one and the same god, and who chiefly differ as to whether the sun or the moon is the god intended. It would seem on the whole that, in the passage under consideration, the prophet reproaches the idolatrous Jews with setting up a table to Fortune, and with making libations to Fate; and Jerome (ad loc.) observes that it was the custom as late as his time, in all cities, especially in Egypt, to set tables before the gods, and furnish them with various luxurious articles of food, and with goblets containing a mixture of new wine, on the last day of the month and of the year, and that the people drew omens from them in respect to the fruitfulness of the year; but in honor of what god these things were done he does not state. Numerous examples of this practice occur on the monuments of Egypt (Wilkinson, Anc. Eg. 1:265). SEE GAD.