Pulse (זֵרַֹעים, zeroim, and זֵרעֹנַים, zeronim; Sept. ὄσπρια; Theod. σπέρματα; Vulg. legumince) occurs only in the A.V. in Da 12:13, as the translation of the above plural nouns, the literal meaning of which is "seeds" of anly kind. The food on which "the four children" thrived for ten days is perhaps not to be restricted to what we now understand by "pulse," i.e. the grains of leguminous vegetables: the term probably includes edible seeds in general. Gesenius translates the words "vegetables, herbs, such as are eaten in a half-fast, as opposed to flesh and more delicate food." Probably the term denotes uncooked grains of any kind, whether barley, wheat, millet, vetches, etc.
Our translators have also inserted in italics the word "pulse" as one of the "parched" sorts of provision which Barzillai brought to king David (2Sa 17:28). In this they are probably right. Leguminous seeds roasted are still used in the East; and in his commentary on Mt 21:12 Jerome mentions roasted chick-pease, along with raisins and apples, as the small-wares in which the huckster fruiterers used to deal: "Frixum cicer, uveque passae, et poma diversi generis." Allusions in Plautus and Horace show that parched pease were a familiar article of diet among the poorer Romans.