For only Og king of Bashan remained of the remnant of giants; behold, his bedstead was a bedstead of iron; is it not in Rabbah of the children of Ammon? nine cubits was the length thereof, and four cubits the breadth of it, after the cubit of a man.
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George Leo Haydock
Giants. Hebrew, "Raphaim. "Og was the only survivor of this family, in Basan, though there were other giants dispersed throughout the land, 1 Paralipomenon xx. 6. (Tirinus)
Some of the stock of Rapha, were also seen afterwards at Geth, but they did not reign in the country of their fathers, as Og alone did at this time, Josue xv. 14., and xvii. 15. Hebrew may be, "Now Og, king of Basan, was a remnant of the Raphaim. "(Calmet)
Septuagint, "for, moreover, Og.was left of the Raphaim. "His bed was 13½ feet long, and 6½ broad, taking the cubit at 18 inches, with Arbuthnot; though Calmet allows 20½ French inches, which are greater than ours. As beds are commonly made larger than the person who lies in them, he concludes that Og might be 14 or 15 feet high, unless he was possessed with the same vanity as Alexander the Great, who caused beds five cubits long to be left in his camp, when he returned from his Indian expedition, in order that the people might think that his soldiers were of a gigantic stature. Allowances must here be made for a royal bed; and, at any rate, it will not easily be proved that a human body might not exceed 12 or 15 feet in height, without injuring the just proportions, as Thomas Paine would have us to believe. We know that the difference in size between the inhabitants of Shetland and of Patagonia is still very great; and the people of the former island would act very irrationally, if they would not credit the existence of the Lincolnshire ox, or of the large dray horses in London, because their own oxen are not bigger than mastiffs. See Watson, p. 26.
Iron. Bedsteads are frequently made of iron, brass, silver, or gold, in hot countries, for the sake of cleanliness and grandeur, Proverbs xxv. 11., Esther i. 6. The Parthian kings reserved to themselves the privilege of lying on golden beds. (Josephus, xx. 20.) The Thebans made beds of iron and brass out of the spoils of Platea, and consecrated them to Juno. (Thucydides, iii.)
Ammon. Hebrew, "Behold his bedstead was of iron; is it not in Rabbath? "This town is called Rabbatamana, by Polybius; and Ammana, by Eusebius, who says it had afterwards the name of Astarte, till Ptolemy Philadelphus gave it the title of Philadelphia. It lay to the east of Jazer, not far from the Arnon. (Cellarius, iii. 14.) It is probable that the bed of Og continued in this city, till it was taken by David, 2 Kings xxii. 30. How the Ammonites got possession of it, we do not know. It seems that the account of it, and of Jair, (ver. 15,) have been given by some one who lived a long time after these events had taken place. (Calmet)
This conjecture, however, is not well founded, for though Moses was addressing those who had been witnesses to these transactions not many months before, his appeal to them gives the strongest authority to a narration, which was to be handed down to the latest posterity. They could attest the surprising stature of that giant, whom they had slain, and their neighbours kept his bed as a proof of his having existed, the terror of all that country. Until this present day, (ver. 14,) is an expression often used in Scripture, to denote an event which had taken place at no very great distance of time, chap. xi. 4. Thus St. Matthew, (xxvii. 8,) writing about eight years after the ascension of our Saviour, says, the field was called Haceldama.even to this day. See Josue viii. 29. (Haydock)
It is sufficient if the thing be still in the same state as it was before. (Menochius)
Hand. Hebrew, "according to the cubit of a man "from the elbow to the finger ends. (Calmet)
Syriac, "of giants. "Chaldean, "of the king "whence some have imagined, that the bed was nine times as long as the cubit of Og, which is very improbable. (Haydock)
The Rabbins, who delight in fables, say that this bed was used by Og only while he was in his infancy: for he grew to be 120 cubits high; and some say his foot alone was this length. He would have hurled a mountain to overwhelm all the Hebrews at once, only a bird, or some ants, made a hole in it, and the mountain falling upon his shoulders, he could not extricate his head, God causing his teeth to grow ten cubits, and in this condition he was taken and killed by Moses. (Lyranus)
Noble discovery of these blind guides! (Calmet)
The poets have not been more extravagant in their descriptions of Typheus, or Typho, whose name signifies burning, as well as that of Og, (or hóg, he burnt) with whom he has probably been confounded. (Vossius on Idolat.) (Haydock)