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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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a city in the tribe of Manasseh, where the witch resided whom Saul consulted a little before the battle of Gilboa, Joshua 17:11 ; 1 Samuel 28:13 . Mr. Bryant derives Endor from En-Ador, signifying fons pythonis, "the fountain of light," or oracle of the god Ador: which oracle was probably founded by the Canaanites, and had never been totally suppressed. The ancient world had many such oracles; the most famous of which were that of Jupiter-Ammon in Lybia, and that of Delphi in Greece: and in all of them, the answers to those who consulted them were given from the mouth of a female; who, from the priestess of Apollo at Delphi, has generally received the name of Pythia. That many such oracles existed in Canaan, is evident from the number which Saul himself is said to have suppressed; and such a one, with its Pythia, was this at Endor. At these shrines, either as mock oracles, contrived by a crafty and avaricious priesthood, to impose on the credulity and superstition of its followers; or, otherwise, as is more generally supposed, as the real instruments of infernal power, mankind, having altogether departed from the true God, were permitted to be deluded. That, in this case, the real Samuel appeared is plain both from the affright of the woman herself, and from the fulfilment of his prophecy. It was an instance of God's overruling the wickedness of men, to manifest his own supremacy and justice.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Endor'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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