Skip to main content



SIHON (Heb. סִיחֹן, סִיחוֹן), Amorite king of *Heshbon, which was a city N.N.E. of Mt. Nebo. According to biblical tradition Sihon conquered the territory of Moab, as far as the Arnon (Num. 21:26). When the Israelites, on their way from the wilderness to the Promised Land, asked his permission to pass through his territory, Sihon refused to grant it, and tried to bar their way. A battle took place, with the result that Sihon was defeated, his land conquered, and Heshbon destroyed (Num. 21:21–25; Deut. 2:26–37). An echo of this conquest was preserved in the poem of the "ballad singers" (Num. 21:27–30). Scholars differ as to the extent of Sihon's territory. M. Noth (see bibl.) thinks that he controlled only an area surrounding Heshbon, and that the boundaries given in Judges 11:22, for example, reflect the history of the subsequent Israelite occupation of the region. Others maintain that Sihon exercised his power over various Amorite and Midianite princedoms in the southern part of Gilead, from Arnon in the south to Jabbok in the north, and from the desert to the Jordan (cf. S. Ahitub, in bibl.; Num. 21:21–30; Deut. 2:26–37; Josh. 12:2; 13:21, 25–27; Judg. 11:21–22).


Maisler, Untersuchungen, 39–42; M. Noth, in: zaw, 58 (1940–41), 162–70; 60 (1944), 37–41; M. Diman (Haran), in: Yedi'ot, 13 (1947), 13–15; S. Yeivin, in: jnes, 9 (1950), 102; R. de Vaux, Bible et Orient (1967), 118–27; S. Ahitub, in: em, 5 (1968), 1017–18.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Sihon." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . 25 May. 2019 <>.

"Sihon." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . (May 25, 2019).

"Sihon." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved May 25, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.