The Holy See
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2002 11 11
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Chapter 4


Then he made a bronze altar twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide and ten cubits high.


He also made the molten sea. It was perfectly round, ten cubits in diameter, five in depth, and thirty in circumference;


1 below the rim a ring of figures of oxen encircled the sea, ten to the cubit, all the way around; there were two rows of these cast in the same mold with the sea.


It rested on twelve oxen, three facing north, three west, three south, and three east, with their haunches all toward the center; the sea rested on their backs.


2 It was a handbreadth thick, and its brim was made like that of a cup, being lily-shaped. It had a capacity of three thousand measures.


Then he made ten basins for washing, placing five of them to the right and five to the left. Here were cleansed the victims for the holocausts; but the sea was for the priests to wash in.


He made the lampstands of gold, ten of them as was prescribed, and placed them in the nave, five to the right and five to the left.


He made ten tables and had them set in the nave, five to the right and five to the left; and he made a hundred golden bowls.


He made the court of the priests and the great courtyard and the gates of the courtyard; the gates he overlaid with bronze.


The sea was placed off to the southeast from the right side of the temple.


Huram also made the pots, the shovels and the bowls. Huram thus completed the work he had to do for King Solomon in the house of God:


two columns, two nodes for the capitals topping these two columns, and two networks covering the nodes of the capitals topping the columns;


also four hundred pomegranates for the two networks, with two rows of pomegranates to each network, to cover the two nodes of the capitals topping the columns.


He made the stands, and the basins on the stands;


one sea, and the twelve oxen under it;


likewise the pots, the shovels and the forks. Huram-abi made all these articles for King Solomon from polished bronze for the house of the LORD.


The king had them cast in the Jordan region, in the clayey ground between Succoth and Zeredah.


Solomon made all these vessels, so many in number that the weight of the bronze was not ascertained.


Solomon had all these articles made for the house of God: the golden altar, the tables on which the showbread lay,


the lampstands and their lamps of pure gold which were to burn according to prescription before the sanctuary,


flowers, lamps and gold tongs (this was the purest gold),


snuffers, bowls, cups and firepans of pure gold. As for the entry to the house, its inner doors to the holy of holies, as well as the doors to the nave, were of gold.



1 [3] Oxen: in 1 Kings 7:24 this double row of ornaments is described as being gourds. The text of Kings available to the Chronicler may have been faulty on this point as the words are similar in sound. In 4:16 the forks correspond in a similar way to bowls in the text of 1 Kings (7:40).

2 [5] Three thousand measures: according to 1 Kings 7:26, two thousand measures.

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