Pit

“A hole in the ground (Ex. 21:33, 34), a cistern for water (Gen.” “37:24; Jer. 14:3), a vault (41:9), a grave (Ps. 30:3). It is” “used as a figure for mischief (Ps. 9:15), and is the name given” “to the unseen place of woe (Rev. 20:1, 3). The slime-pits in the” vale of Siddim were wells which yielded asphalt (Gen. 14:10).

“(Gen. 6:14), asphalt or bitumen in its soft state, called” “slime (Gen. 11:3; 14:10; Ex. 2:3), found in pits near the Dead” “Sea (q.v.). It was used for various purposes, as the coating of” the outside of vessels and in building. Allusion is made in Isa. 34:9 to its inflammable character. (See SLIME.)

A vessel for containing liquids. In the East pitchers were usually carried on the head or shoulders (Gen. 24:15-20; Judg. “7:16, 19; Mark 14:13).”

“Egyptian, Pa-Tum, “house of Tum,” the sun-god, one of the” treasure cities built for Pharaoh Rameses II. by the Israelites (Ex. 1:11). It was probably the Patumos of the Greek historian Herodotus. It has now been satisfactorily identified “with Tell-el-Maskhuta, about 12 miles west of Ismailia, and 20” “east of Tel-el-Kebir, on the southern bank of the present Suez” Canal. Here have recently (1883) been discovered the ruins of “supposed grain-chambers, and other evidences to show that this” “was a great “store city.” Its immense ruin-heaps show that it” “was built of bricks, and partly also of bricks without straw.” Succoth (Ex. 12:37) is supposed by some to be the secular name “of this city, Pithom being its sacred name. This was the first” halting-place of the Israelites in their exodus. It has been “argued (Dr. Lansing) that these “store” cities “were residence” “cities, royal dwellings, such as the Pharaohs of old, the Kings” “of Israel, and our modern Khedives have ever loved to build,” thus giving employment to the superabundant muscle of their “enslaved peoples, and making a name for themselves.”

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