Deleth, 'door, page that which hangs' - from a selection of Biblical Hebrew word studies taken from our courses and supplementary in-depth Hebrew word essays added online for general use.

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delethDeleth - 'door, page that which hangs'

Something hanging

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The word deleth - view larger image deleth (Strong's 1817) means 'the leaf' of a door, i.e., that which hangs or swings (on hinges or a post) and can be opened or shut. It derives from the root verb, deleth - view larger image dlh (Strong's #1802) which means 'to hang down' and includes the idea of letting down to draw out, as with water from a well.

A bucket, deliy - view larger image dely (Strong's #1805), also comes from this root, as it hangs on a rope to draw water from the well. With the idea of drawing out comes the idea of freedom as in Psalm 30:2: "I will extol you for you set me free [drew me out/lifted me up] (deliy - view larger image dillythny)". In Proverbs 20:5 the verb is used of a man of understanding 'drawing out' counsel from the heart.

deliy - view larger image dal (Strong's #1800) is the less common masculine word, equivalent of deleth and also from the same root. It is used in the phrase, 'the door of the lips' in Psalm 141:3 in parallel to and meaning the 'mouth'. Other derived or associated words include: dlal (Strong's #1809) 'to hang down, swing/wave; be weak, feeble, delicate'; dlyth (Strong's #1808) [plural: dlyywth] 'branches, boughs', as hanging from a tree; dllh 'thread, hair, poor - life as hanging by a slender thread', (Strong's #1803, Isaiah 38:12, a thread hanging down from a loom).

The word deliy - view larger image dal in Hebrew, can also mean the lowest poorest tribe or individual. In fact, modern India describes the lower castes, the 'untouchables', as dalits.
"According to James Massey, the term "Dalit" is perhaps, one of the most ancient terms which has not only survived till date, but is also shared by a few of world's oldest languages, namely, Hebrew and Sanskrit. Though they differ in their grammatical and lexicographical connotations, both these languages share the term "Dalit" with the same root and sense. It has been said that the root word 'dal' in dalit has been borrowed into Sanskrit from Hebrew." (www.csichurch.com/article/dalit.htm and see www.dalitsolidarity.org/meaning.htm)
One interesting use of deleth - view larger image deleth is for the 'leaf' or 'page' of a book, as it hangs from the spine and resembles a double-door. This occurs in Jeremiah 36:23 when the king hears 3 or 4 'columns' [literally: 'doors'] of Jeremiah's words of prophecy read from the scroll and then cuts the 'leaves' off with a scribe's knife and burns them in the fire. In the ancient Lachish letters (no.4, dated 586 B.C.) on the obverse side there is the phrase "I have written on the door (deleth - view larger image) according to all my Lord has written to me . . .". Here we are not to imagine doors being written upon but the leaves of a scroll again.

deleth - view larger image deleth and pathach - view larger image pthach "door, opening" (Strong's #6607) are combined in phrases such as, dal'thy phnyv my phittach "who can open the doors of his [Leviathan's] face?" (Job 41:14 [Hebrew v.6]). Here the phrase, which would otherwise mean lips, probably means 'jaws'.

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