BEAR (דֹּב, H1800; ἄρκτος, G760). The only variation in tr. in the main Eng. VSS is in
Brown bears were found earlier over much of the temperate northern hemisphere, and some zoologists regard them all as a single species divided into many geographical forms. The Alaskan and Kodiak bears are the giants, weighing up to 1500 pounds. The Old World forms are the smallest, weighing some 500 pounds. The Syrian bear is paler brown than any other except perhaps the Isabelline bear of the Himalayas. In Biblical times they ranged over much of the hilly regions of Pal., venturing down to the plains occasionally but being absent from the true desert. The last Pal. bear was killed in Upper Galilee just before World War II and in Lebanon and Hermon by the armies a few years later. It is still found in N Syria, S Turkey and NW Persia.
Although carnivorous by classification, brown bears are actually omnivorous and for much of the year they feed on plant material, including roots, fruits and grass, with ants, bees and their combs, any small animals they may happen upon, and even carrion. In suitable areas they catch fish. Left to themselves bears avoid contact with man and seldom attack his livestock, but in late winter and spring, after emerging from their partial hibernation, other food may be scarce and it is at such times that bears in Pal. would venture down to lower ground and try to take a lamb from the flocks feeding on the early grass (
While accompanied by cubs the she-bear is much more aggressive than usual and three different vv., perhaps quoting a proverb, refer to the danger of a bear robbed of her cubs (
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)
Alfred Y. Day
bar, born (nasa’; lambano, anaphero, bastazo): In of the Bible the physical sense is familiar, of supporting or carrying any weight or burden. The translation of the (British and American) is to be preferred in