Egypt, Brook of

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EGYPT, BROOK OF (Heb. נַחַל מִצְרַיִם, Naḥal Miẓrayim), the natural border of the land of Canaan and the Kingdom of *Judah on the south and the southwest according to the Bible (Num. 34:5; Josh. 15:4; cf. ii Chron. 7:8; Isa. 27:12; Ezek. 47:19; 48:28). It is also described as the southern border of Solomon's kingdom: "from the entrance of *Hamath unto the Brook of Egypt" (i Kings 8:65) and the eastern extremity of Egypt (ii Kings 24:7). Assyrian inscriptions of *Sargon and *Esarhaddon also refer to it as the Muṣur or Muṣri River. Its identification with Wadi el-Arish is found in the Septuagint (Isa. 27:12), which translates it "Rhinokoroura," the Greek name of the city near its mouth.

The river, about 150 mi. (240 km.) long, drains about 12,500 sq. mi. (32,500 sq. km.) in the northern part of the *Sinai Peninsula. It absorbs part of the heavy flood waters inundating it, and the area near its mouth is rich in wells.


Abel, Geog, 1 (1933), 301; Pritchard, Texts, 286, 290, 292; Aharoni, Land, index. add. bibliography: S. Ahituv, Joshua (1995), 243.

[Moshe Kochavi]