Ensign [N] [S]

  • Heb. 'oth, a military standard, especially of a single tribe ( Numbers 2:2 ). Each separate tribe had its own "sign" or "ensign."

  • Heb. nes, a lofty signal, as a column or high pole ( Numbers 21:8 Numbers 21:9 ); a standard or signal or flag placed on high mountains to point out to the people a place of rendezvous on the irruption of an enemy ( Isaiah 5:26 ; 11:12 ; 18:3 ; 62:10 ; Jeremiah 4:6 Jeremiah 4:21 ; Psalms 60:4 ). This was an occasional signal, and not a military standard. Elevation and conspicuity are implied in the word.

  • The Hebrew word degel denotes the standard given to each of the four divisions of the host of the Israelites at the Exodus ( Numbers 1:52 ; 2:2 ; 10:14 ). In Cant 2:4 it is rendered "banner." We have no definite information as to the nature of these military standards. (See BANNER .)

    These dictionary topics are from
    M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
    published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.

    [N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
    [S] indicates this entry was also found in Smith's Bible Dictionary

    Bibliography Information

    Easton, Matthew George. "Entry for Ensign". "Easton's Bible Dictionary". .

  • Ensign

    A banner; sign; memorial.

    And He will lift up an ENSIGN to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly. ( Isaiah 5:26 )

    Source: A King James Dictionary. (Used with permission. Copyright © Philip P. Kapusta)

    Bibliography Information

    "Entry for 'Ensign'". A King James Dictionary.

    Ensign [N] [E]

    (nes ; in the Authorized Version generally "ensign," sometimes "standard;" degel , "standard," with the exception of ( Solomon 2:4 ) "banner;" oth , "ensign"). This distinction between these three Hebrew terms is sufficiently marked by their respective uses. Nes is a signal , and not a military standard. It is an occasional signal, which was exhibited on the top of a pole from a bare mountain-top, ( Isaiah 13:2 ; 18:3 ) degel a military standard for a large division of an army; and oth the same for a small one. Neither of them, however, expresses the idea which "standard" conveys to our minds, viz. a flag. The standards in use among the Hebrews probably resembled those of the Egyptians and Assyrians --a figure or device of some kind elevated on a pole; usually a sacred emblem, such as an animal, a boat, or the kings name.

    [N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
    [E] indicates this entry was also found in Easton's Bible Dictionary

    Bibliography Information

    Smith, William, Dr. "Entry for 'Ensign'". "Smith's Bible Dictionary". . 1901.