an exercise in miscellany

Molten Sea

In history on July 17, 2011 at 7:26 am

The Molten Sea or Brazen Sea (ים מוצק “cast metal sea“) was a large basin in the Temple in Jerusalem made by Solomon for ablution of the priests. It is described in 1 Kings 7 and 2 Chronicles 4. It stood in the south-eastern corner of the inner court. According to the Bible it was five cubits high, ten cubits in diameter from brim to brim, and thirty cubits in circumference. It was placed on the backs of twelve oxen, standing with their faces outward. It was capable of containing two or three thousand baths of water. Though some think this impossible or unlikely based upon the stated dimensions, the fact that it was a wash basin which was too large to enter from above lends to the idea that water would likely have flowed from it down into a subcontainer beneath. (2 Chronicles 4). The water was originally supplied by the Gibeonites, but was afterwards brought by a conduit from the pools of Bethlehem. The molten sea was made of “brass” (copper), which Solomon had taken from the captured cities of Hadarezer, the king of Zobah (1 Chronicles 18). Ahaz later removed this laver from the oxen, and placed it on a stone pavement (2 Kings 16). It was destroyed by the Chaldeans (2 Kings 25).

via Molten Sea

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