An evergreen tree, resembling in form and size the Lombardy poplar. Its wood is exceedingly durable, and seems to have been used for making idols, Isa 44:14. The cypress is thought to be intended in some of the passages where "fir-tree" occurs, 2Sa 6:5, etc.
(Heb. tirzah, "hardness"), mentioned only in Isa 44:14 (R.V., "holm tree"). The oldest Latin version translates this word by ilex, i.e., the evergreen oak, which may possibly have been the tree intended; but there is great probability that our Authorized Version is correct in rendering it "cypress." This tree grows abundantly on the mountains of Hermon. Its wood is hard and fragrant, and very durable. Its foliage is dark and gloomy. It is an evergreen (Cupressus sempervirens). "Throughout the East it is used as a funereal tree; and its dark, tall, waving plumes render it peculiarly appropriate among the tombs."
Illustration: Branch of Cypress-Tree
Isa 44:14; tirzah, from taaraz "to be hard." Sir 24:13; Sir 1:1-21. A large, coniferous, evergreen tree; the wood very durable, hard, and fragrant. The cypress, which is a native of Taurus, is now only found in lower levels of Syria. Since it seldom rots, it was used for idol statues. The juniper is found 7,000 ft. up Lebanon, but not at the top, which is 10,500 ft. high.
(1) tirzah (Isa 44:14, RV 'holm oak') stands for some tree with very hard wood, the meaning of the root (in Arabic) being to be hard. 'Holm oak' is the rendering of the oldest Latin translation. This is the Quercus ilex, a tree now rare W. of the Jordan, but still found in Gilead and Bashan; (2) te'ashshur (Isa 41:19 Revised Version margin). Both AV and RV have 'box tree' (wh. see); (3) ber
A species of oak which preserves its fragrance: it will not easily rot, nor is it eaten by worms. Isa 44:14.
(Heb. tirzah). The Hebrew word is found only in
We are quite unable to assign any definite rendering to it. The true cypress is a native of the Taurus. The Hebrew word points to some tree with a hard grain, and this is all that can be positively said of it.
CYPRESS, ????, Isa 44:14; and ??????????, Ecclus. 24:13; 50:10; a large evergreen tree. The wood is fragrant, very compact, and heavy. It scarcely ever rots, decays, or is worm-eaten; for which reason the ancients used to make the statues of their gods with it. The unperishable chests which contain the Egyptian mummies were of cypress. The gates of St. Peter's church at Rome, which had lasted from the time of Constantine to that of Pope Eugene IV, that is to say, eleven hundred years, were of cypress, and had in that time suffered no decay. But Celsius thinks that Isaiah speaks of the ilex, a kind of oak; and Bishop Lowth, that the pine is intended. The cypress, however, was more frequently used, and more fit for the purpose which the prophet mentions, than either of these trees.