Abel Mizraim

ABEL MIZRAIM (ā'bĕl mĭz'rā-ĭm, Heb. ’āvēl-mitsrayim, meadow or mourning of Egypt). A place east of the Jordan at which the funeral cortege of Jacob stopped to mourn for seven days before entering Canaan to bury the patriarch (Gen.50.11). It had been called the “threshing floor of Atad,” but the Canaanites now called it the “mourning of Egypt” or the “funeral from Egypt,” because the princes and chief men of Egypt, with their chariots and horsemen, took part in the funeral rites.


ABEL-MIZRAIM ā’ bəl mĭz’ rĭ əm (אָבֵ֣ל מִצְרַ֔יִם, meadow of Egypt). An unidentified site where the funeral cortège of Jacob stopped on its way to Hebron for a special seven days of mourning according to Genesis 50:10, 11. The other name for this place is “the threshingfloor of Atad.” Obviously there is a pun here between ’ebel, “mourning” and ’abel “meadow.” The location is not necessarily on the E side of the Jordan as the majority view states, but is prob. on the W side. The phrase “Beyond the Jordan” must not always refer to Transjordania as now shown by the Sabaean word ’brt, “The neighborhood of a stream” and Genser’s suggestion “the region of Jordan or Jordania.”

Bibliography

B. Gemmser, “Be eber Hajjarden: In Jordan’s Borderland,” VT II (1953), 349-355; G. T. Manley, The Book of the Law (1957), 48-50.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

A name given to "the threshing floor of Atad," East of the Jordan and North of the Dead Sea, because Joseph and his funeral party from Egypt there held their mourning over Jacob (Ge 50:11). The name is a pun. The Canaanite residents saw the ’ebhel, "the mourning," and therefore that place was called ’abhel mitsrayim.

It is remarkable that the funeral should have taken this circuitous route, instead of going directly from Egypt to Hebron. Possibly a reason may be found as we obtain additional details in Egyptian history. The explanations which consist in changing the text, or in substituting the North Arabian Mutsri for Mitsrayim, are unsatisfactory. Willis J. Beecher