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Nile River and delta from orbit.

The Nile (Hebrew: יְאֹ֔ור, yeor, meaning "river"; Arabic: النيل, an-Nīl, Greek: Νείλος, Neilos, Latin: Nilus, probably meaning "dark blue") is a major north-flowing river in northeastern Africa exceeded in length only by the Amazon river and the Missouri-Mississipi rivers.[1] The Nile River is of utmost importance to the economy of Egypt. Appropriately, Egypt is called "the gift of the Nile".[2]

In the Bible

The word 'Nile' does not appear in the Hebrew OT, but when we find in the Old Testament the words 'the river' it is possible to judge by the context whether the reference is to the Nile (Hebrew: עַל־הַיְאֹֽר, the river as in Genesis 41:1 ) or the Euphrates (Hebrew: אֶת־הַנָּהָ֑ר, the river as in Genesis 31:21 ).[1] The river of Egypt was well known for its production of papyrus (Isaiah 19:7 ).[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Douglas, J.D.; Tenney, Merril C, ed. (1987). The New International Dictionary of the Bible. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House. p. 708-709. ISBN 0-310-33190-0. 
  2. Pfeiffer, Charles F (1979). Baker´s Bible Atlas. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House. p. 13. ISBN 0-8010-6930-0. 
  3. Unger, Merrill F (1988). Harrison, R. K.. ed. The New Unger´s Bible Dictionary. Chicago: Moody Press. pp. 922-923. ISBN 0-8024-9037-9.