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Smith's Bible Dictionary

  1. Tinshemeth. (Leviticus 11:30) It is probable that the animals mentioned with the tinshemeth in the above passage denote different kinds of lizards; perhaps, therefore, the chameleon is the animal intended.
  2. Chephor peroth is rendered "moles" in (Isaiah 2:20) (The word means burrowers, hole-diggers, and may designate any of the small animals, as rats and weasels, which burrow among ruins. Many scholars, according to McClintock and Strong's "Cyclopedia," consider that the Greek aspalax is the animal intended by both the words translated mole. It is not the European mole, but is a kind of blind mole-rat, from 8 to 12 inches long, feeding on vegetables, and burrowing like a mole, but on a larger scale. It is very common in Russia, and Hasselquiest says it is abundant on the plains of Sharon in Palestine. --ED.)
Scripture Alphabet Of Animals

I remember but two places in the Bible where this animal is mentioned. One is in Leviticus, where it is named among the unclean animals which the Israelites were forbidden to eat; and the other is this verse in the second chapter of IsaiahIsaiah 2: "In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats." Have you read about the first missionaries who went to the Sandwich Islands? And do you remember that although the people had always been worshippers of idols, they had cast them all away just before the missionaries came? That was a very wonderful thing to happen; and it seems as though God was making these poor people ready to hear about the Savior, when the missionaries should come. Well, this verse in Isaiah declares that the same thing will happen by and by over the whole earth. You know that there are now millions and millions of poor heathen who worship nothing but images of gold, or brass, or stone; but the day is coming when not an idol shall be seen, and no being shall be worshipped but the true God. The mole lives under ground, and the bat in gloomy, dark caves where nobody thinks of going; so when it is said that the idols shall be "Cast to the moles and to the bats," it means that they shall be thrown away in dark and neglected places, just as we throw away old shoes, or any thing that we care nothing about. Will you try to remember this verse about the idols? Perhaps you may live to see the near approach of that day.

The mole is a very curious animal in its appearance and in its manner of living. It is almost always under ground, and we should think that the little creature could not be very happy; but its skin is as smooth and handsome as that of any animal, and it seems very well contented with its dark home. God made it to live there, and he has given it just such a body at it needs. It is covered with fine, short, silky hair, almost like soft velvet, so that the earth does not stick to it; and its legs are very short, so as not to be in the way. If its legs were long it could not get through the ground very well, you know. Its eyes are very small, because it does not need to see much, and they are almost buried too under its soft fur, which keeps out all the dust and dirt. The opening of the ear is covered in the same way, so that nothing can hurt it.

Its fore-paws are made broad like a shovel, and are very strong; each one, too, has five short fingers with which the earth can be removed. The nose is sharp and bony, and this helps the mole to work its way through the earth. They throw up the earth when they make their houses under ground, and in this way mole-hills are made. They like to work at morning and evening, and also after a shower, when the earth is damp and soft, and easily moved.

The mole is larger than a mouse, but not as large as a rat. It eats insects and worms, and sometimes the roots of plants.

ATS Bible Dictionary

A small animal, which burrows obscurely in the ground, Isaiah 2:20. It is common is some parts of Palestine, and is mentioned as unclean in Le 11:30; or, according to Bochart, in Le 11:29, in the word translated "weasel."

Easton's Bible Dictionary
Hebrews tinshameth (Leviticus 11:30), probably signifies some species of lizard (rendered in R.V., "chameleon"). In Leviticus 11:18, Deuteronomy 14:16, it is rendered, in Authorized Version, "swan" (R.V., "horned owl").

The Hebrews holed (Leviticus 11:29), rendered "weasel," was probably the mole-rat. The true mole (Talpa Europoea) is not found in Palestine. The mole-rat (Spalax typhlus) "is twice the size of our mole, with no external eyes, and with only faint traces within of the rudimentary organ; no apparent ears, but, like the mole, with great internal organs of hearing; a strong, bare snout, and with large gnawing teeth; its colour a pale slate; its feet short, and provided with strong nails; its tail only rudimentary."

In Isaiah 2:20, this word is the rendering of two words _haphar peroth_, which are rendered by Gesenius "into the digging of rats", i.e., rats' holes. But these two Hebrew words ought probably to be combined into one (lahporperoth) and translated "to the moles", i.e., the rat-moles. This animal "lives in underground communities, making large subterranean chambers for its young and for storehouses, with many runs connected with them, and is decidedly partial to the loose debris among ruins and stone-heaps, where it can form its chambers with least trouble."

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (n.) A spot; a stain; a mark which discolors or disfigures.

2. (n.) A spot, mark, or small permanent protuberance on the human body; esp., a spot which is dark-colored, from which commonly issue one or more hairs.

3. (n.) A mass of fleshy or other more or less solid matter generated in the uterus.

4. (n.) A mound or massive work formed of masonry or large stones, etc., laid in the sea, often extended either in a right line or an arc of a circle before a port which it serves to defend from the violence of the waves, thus protecting ships in a harbor; also, sometimes, the harbor itself.

5. (n.) Any insectivore of the family Talpidae. They have minute eyes and ears, soft fur, and very large and strong fore feet.

6. (n.) A plow of peculiar construction, for forming underground drains.

7. (v. t.) To form holes in, as a mole; to burrow; to excavate; as, to mole the earth.

8. (v. t.) To clear of molehills.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia


(1) tinshemeth, the King James Version "mole," the Revised Version (British and American) "chameleon"; Septuagint aspalax = spalax, "mole," Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) talpa, "mole" (Leviticus 11:30);

(2) choledh, English Versions of the Bible "weasel"; Septuagint gale, "weasel" or "pole-cat"; compare Arabic khuld, "mole-rat" (Leviticus 11:29);

(3) chaphar-peroth, English Versions of the Bible "moles"; from chaphar, "to dig"; compare Arabic chafar, "to dig," and perah, "mole" or "rat," for pe'erah, from the root pa'ar, "to dig"; compare Arabic fa'rat, or farat, "rat," "mouse," from the root fa'ar, "to dig"; Septuagint tois mataiois, "vain, idle, or profane persons" (Isaiah 2:20):

(1) Tinshemeth is the last of 8 unclean "creeping things" in Leviticus 11:29, 30. The word occurs also in Leviticus 11:18 and Deuteronomy 14:16, translated the King James Version "swan," the Revised Version (British and American) "horned owl," Septuagint porphurion, "coot" or "heron." See CHAMELEON.

(2) Choledh is the first in the same list. The word occurs nowhere else, and is translated "weasel" in English Versions of the Bible, but comparison with the Arabic khuld has led to the suggestion that "mole-rat" would be a better translation. See WEASEL.

(3) In Isaiah 2:20, "In that day men shall cast away their idols.... to the moles and to the bats," chaphar-peroth, variously written as one word or two, is translated "moles" in English Versions of the Bible, but has given rise to much conjecture.

The European "mole," Talpa europea, is extensively distributed in the temperate parts of Europe and Asia, but is absent from Syria and Palestine, its place being taken by the mole-rat, Spalax typhlus. The true mole belongs to the Insectivora, and feeds on earth-worms and insect larvae, but in making its tunnels and nests, it incidentally injures gardens and lawns. The mole-rat belongs to the Rodentia, and has teeth of the same general type as those of a rat or squirrel, large, chisel-shaped incisors behind which is a large vacant space, no canines, and praemolars and molars with grinding surfaces. It is larger than the mole, but of the same color, and, like the mole, is blind. It makes tunnels much like those of the mole. It is herbivorous and has been observed to seize growing plants and draw them down into its hole. In one of its burrows a central chamber has been found filled with entire plants of the chummuc or chick-pea, and two side chambers containing pods plucked from the plants in the central chamber. While the mole digs with its powerful and peculiarly shaped front feet, the mole-rat digs with its nose, its feet being normal in shape.


Alfred Ely Day

3468. molops -- a bruise
... stripe, wound. From molos ("moil"; probably akin to the base of molis) and probably
ops (the face; from optanomai); a mole ("black eye") or blow-mark -- stripe. ...
// - 6k
Strong's Hebrew
6512. perah -- mole
... perah. 6513 . mole. Transliteration: perah Phonetic Spelling: (pay-raw') Short
Definition: mole. ... mole From puwr; a hole (as broken, ie Dug) -- + mole. ...
/hebrew/6512.htm - 5k

2661. chaphor -- mole
... 2660b, 2661. chaphor. 2662 . mole. Transliteration: chaphor Phonetic Spelling:
(khaf-ore') Short Definition: mole. Word Origin see chapharparah. mole ...
/hebrew/2661.htm - 6k

2663c. chapharparah -- a mole
... chapharparah. 2664 . a mole. Transliteration: chapharparah Short Definition: moles.
Word Origin from chaphar Definition a mole NASB Word Usage moles (1). ...
/hebrew/2663c.htm - 5k

865. ethmowl -- yesterday, recently, formerly
... 864b, 865. ethmowl. 865a . yesterday, recently, formerly. Transliteration:
ethmowl Phonetic Spelling: (eth-mole') Short Definition: time. ...
/hebrew/865.htm - 6k

4136. mul -- front, in front of
... Or mowl (Deuteronomy 1:1) {mole}; or mowtl (Nehemiah 12:38) {mole}; or mul (Numbers
22:5) {mool}; from muwl; properly, abrupt, ie A precipice; by implication ...
/hebrew/4136.htm - 6k

8580. tinshemeth -- (an animal) perhaps owl, chameleon
... Word Origin from nasham Definition (an animal) perhaps owl, chameleon NASB
Word Usage chameleon (1), white owl (2). mole, swan. From ...
/hebrew/8580.htm - 6k

2467. choled -- weasel
... weasel. Transliteration: choled Phonetic Spelling: (kho'-led) Short Definition:
mole. Word Origin from an unused word Definition weasel NASB Word Usage mole (1) ...
/hebrew/2467.htm - 6k


The Question of the Tall Gentleman as to Whether Diamond could ...
... The mole in his moleskins left his barrowing burrowing. ... And all the creatures
sat and stared; The mole opened his very eyes and glared; ...
/.../macdonald/at the back of the north wind/chapter 20 the question of.htm

... The mole cannot soar in the face of the sun like the eagle; neither can the
bird that comes out of the eagle's egg burrow like the mole. ...
/.../dods/the expositors bible the gospel of st john vol i/vii nicodemus.htm

In this Passage all Room for Doubt is Removed. In the Former ...
... those able and learned men who read these writings of his about which he now writes
in commendation, should laugh at me because he calls me a mole, and should ...
/.../32 in this passage all.htm

Let us Now Examine the Conditions under which a Revelation May be ...
... The mole is not endowed with the far-seeing vision which is essential to the
well-being of the eagle: nor, on the other hand, has the eagle the power of ...
/.../ on a revelation/section 2 let us now.htm

A vision of the Latter-Day Glories
... a moment of the Alps, or of the loftier Andes, or of the yet mightier Himalayas,
this mount Zion seems to be a very little hill, a mere mole-hill insignificant ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 5 1859/a vision of the latter-day.htm

A Book for Boys and Girls Or, Temporal Things Spritualized.
... XX. OF THE MOLE IN THE GROUND. ... Poor silly mole, that thou should'st love
to be Where thou nor sun, nor moon, nor stars can see. ...
/.../bunyan/the works of john bunyan volumes 1-3/a book for boys and.htm

The Second Part.
... True zeale loves to keepe home, studieth to bee quiet in other mens Dioces: false
zeale loves to be gadding, is eagle-ey'd abroad and mole-ey'd at home ...
/.../ward/a coal from the altar to kindle the holy fire of zeale/the second part.htm

Making Haste to be Rich.
... MAKING HASTE TO BE RICH. "CENT to cent, shilling to shilling, and dollar to dollar,
slowly and steadily, like the progress of a mole in the earth! ...
// for the wise/making haste to be rich.htm

The Inconsistent Life of any False Christian no More Condemns True ...
... It must happen even in the healthiest and purest body, that a mole should
grow, or a wart arise on it, or freckles disfigure it. ...
/.../tertullian/ad nationes/chapter v name inconsistent life.htm

Book 2
... The understanding of the soul in divine things, that is, in the knowledge and true
worship of God, is blinder than a mole; good works it can neither contrive ...
/.../calvin/the institutes of the christian religion/book 2.htm

Mole (2 Occurrences)
... The Hebrews holed (Leviticus 11:29), rendered "weasel," was probably the
mole-rat. The true mole (Talpa Europoea) is not found in Palestine. ...
/m/mole.htm - 12k

Chameleon (1 Occurrence)
... In the same verse the Hebrew tanshemeth, rendered in Authorized Version "mole,"
is in Revised Version "chameleon," which is the correct rendering. ...
/c/chameleon.htm - 11k

Weasel (1 Occurrence)
... 11:29). Some think that this Hebrew word rather denotes the mole (Spalax typhlus)
common in Palestine. There ... subterranean animals. See MOLE. (2 ...
/w/weasel.htm - 9k

Lizard (3 Occurrences)
... King James Version "snail," the Revised Version (British and American) "sand-lizard"
(which see); (8) tinshemeth, the King James Version "mole," the Revised ...
/l/lizard.htm - 16k

...MOLE (which see) not found in Palestine CHIROPTERA: Bat CARNIVORA (a) Felidae, Cat,
Lion, Leopard (b) Hyaenidae, Hyena (c) Canidae, Dog (including Greyhound ...
/z/zoology.htm - 18k

Puteoli (1 Occurrence)
... The harbor was rendered doubly safe by a mole, which is known to have been at least
418 yards in length, consisting of massive piers connected by means of ...
/p/puteoli.htm - 11k

Ferret (1 Occurrence)
... 7) chomeT, the King James Version "snail," the Revised Version (British and American)
"sand lizard"; (8) tinshemeth, the King James Version "mole," the Revised ...
/f/ferret.htm - 11k

Field-mouse (1 Occurrence)
... Leviticus 11:29 And these shall be unclean unto you among the crawling things which
crawl on the earth: the mole, and the field-mouse, and the lizard, after ...
/f/field-mouse.htm - 6k

Troas (6 Occurrences)
... provided with baths. The port from which Paul sailed was constructed by
means of a mole, with an outer and an inner basin. The most ...
/t/troas.htm - 11k

Mold (1 Occurrence)
... Noah Webster's Dictionary 1. (n.) A spot; a blemish; a mole. 2. (v.) Alt. of Mould.
3. (vt) Alt. of Mould. 4. (n.) Alt. of Mould. 5. (vt) Alt. of Mould. ...
/m/mold.htm - 7k

Bible Concordance
Mole (2 Occurrences)

Leviticus 11:29 And these shall be unclean unto you among the crawling things which crawl on the earth: the mole, and the field-mouse, and the lizard, after its kind;

Leviticus 11:30 And the ferret, and the chameleon, and the lizard, and the snail, and the mole.



Mole: General Scriptures Concerning

Related Terms

Chameleon (1 Occurrence)

Weasel (1 Occurrence)

Lizard (3 Occurrences)


Puteoli (1 Occurrence)

Ferret (1 Occurrence)

Field-mouse (1 Occurrence)

Troas (6 Occurrences)

Mold (1 Occurrence)

Moldy (2 Occurrences)

Crawling (20 Occurrences)

Crawl (5 Occurrences)

Caesarea (20 Occurrences)

Alexandria (4 Occurrences)

Assos (2 Occurrences)

Snail (2 Occurrences)

Locust (25 Occurrences)

Land (19790 Occurrences)

Molech (16 Occurrences)


Tyre (59 Occurrences)


Herod (45 Occurrences)

Temple (614 Occurrences)

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