(צָב, tsab, so called, according to Gesenius, from moving slowly; Sept. ὁςριςι.δευκιη ὁ χερσαῖος; Vulg. crocodilus) occurs only in Le 11:29 as the name of some unclean animal; Bochart (Hieroz. 2, 463) with reason refers the Heb. term to the kindred Arabic dhab, a large kind of lizard, which, from the description of it as given by Damir, appears to be the Psamlnmosaurus scillcus, or Monritor terrestris of Cuvlier (Rayne Anim. 2, 26). This lizard is the waran el-hard of the Arabs, i.e. the land-

waran (Yranus arenarius), in. contradistinction from the waran el-bahr, i.e. the water-lizard (Monitor Niloticus), It is common enough in the deserts of Palestine and North Africa. It is probably the κροκόδειλος χερσαῖος of Herodotus (4, 192) and Dioscorides (2, 71), or perhaps their σκιγκος, the Scincus offcinalis. SEE SNAIL. The land-monitor (Psammoscaurus scincus) is a lizard three or four feet in length, which, living in the sandy and rocky wastes, subsists on the beetles and other small animals that are found in such arid situations. It is of a-yellowish or dusky tint, with darker green spots and bands, and with yellow claws. Tristram, however, thinks the animal in question is the Uromastix spinipes, a large species of lizard very common in the desert and sands of North Africa and Arabia. It. is also well known in the Judean wilderness, living in holes of the rocks and burrowing in the sand. It sometimes attains the length of two feet. Its most peculiar characteristic is its powerful spiny tail, broad and massive, and incrusted with close rows of stout prickly scales, This is its weapon of defense, which it uses with effect against its assailant. Its: color is grass green, spotted with brown, but darker when irritated. It has a slow and awkward gait, turning its head from side to side with great caution as it walks... It rarely bites, but when it does so nothing will induce it to relinquish its grasp. It feeds chiefly on beetles, but will attack larger animals, even chickens, when in confinement. It is eaten by the Arabs" (Nat. Hist. of the Bible, p. 255). SEE LIZARD.

Bible concordance for TORTOISE.

The same Hebrew word צָב, tsab, is translated "covered [wagons]" in Nu 7:3, and the same idea seems to be prominent in Isa 66:20, where our translators have rendered it "litters." According to Gesenius, it means in both these passages a sedan or palanquin (so called from being gently borne). SEE LITTER.

Several kinds of tortoise inhabit Palestine and the surrounding regions. Among the land tortoises the bordered tortoise (Testudo marginaata), probably the χελώνη χερσαῖα of Aristotle-a little species closely resembling the common T. Greac-replaces this latter in Egypt and the coast of Barbary; and, a near ally, T. Mauritanica, extends throughout. North Africa and Western Asia, from, Algiers to the Caspian. Besides these, several marsh-tortoises (Emys, etc.) are common in the fresh waters of those regions, and are particularly troublesome to horses wading or drinking (see Wood, Bible Animals, p. 507 sq.). SEE ZOOLOGY.

Definition of tortoise

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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