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[deb-er-uh, deb-ruh] /ˈdɛb ər ə, ˈdɛb rə/
a prophetess and judge of Israel. Judges 4, 5.
Also, Debora. a female given name: from a Hebrew word meaning “bee.”. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Deborah
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • What a naughty girl you were to take Deborah, when she was not invited.

    Clematis Bertha B. Cobb
  • Deborah told me, as often she has seen him leave the church.

    The Opal Serpent Fergus Hume
  • Deborah, listening in the next cell, heard a slight clicking sound, often repeated.

    Life in the Iron-Mills Rebecca Harding Davis
  • "Him as caused the smashes," said Deborah, with several sniffs.

    The Opal Serpent Fergus Hume
  • He glanced up in a little while and saw Deborah smiling across at him, reading his dislike of such talk.

    His Family Ernest Poole
British Dictionary definitions for Deborah


/ˈdɛbərə; -brə/
noun (Old Testament)
a prophetess and judge of Israel who fought the Canaanites (Judges 4, 5)
Rebecca's nurse (Genesis 35:8)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Deborah

fem. proper name, prophetess and judge in the Old Testament, Hebrew, literally "bee" (thus the name is the same as Melissa).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Deborah in the Bible

a bee. (1.) Rebekah's nurse. She accompanied her mistress when she left her father's house in Padan-aram to become the wife of Isaac (Gen. 24:59). Many years afterwards she died at Bethel, and was buried under the "oak of weeping", Allon-bachuth (35:8). (2.) A prophetess, "wife" (woman?) of Lapidoth. Jabin, the king of Hazor, had for twenty years held Israel in degrading subjection. The spirit of patriotism seemed crushed out of the nation. In this emergency Deborah roused the people from their lethargy. Her fame spread far and wide. She became a "mother in Israel" (Judg. 4:6, 14; 5:7), and "the children of Israel came up to her for judgment" as she sat in her tent under the palm tree "between Ramah and Bethel." Preparations were everywhere made by her direction for the great effort to throw off the yoke of bondage. She summoned Barak from Kadesh to take the command of 10,000 men of Zebulun and Naphtali, and lead them to Mount Tabor on the plain of Esdraelon at its north-east end. With his aid she organized this army. She gave the signal for attack, and the Hebrew host rushed down impetuously upon the army of Jabin, which was commanded by Sisera, and gained a great and decisive victory. The Canaanitish army almost wholly perished. That was a great and ever-memorable day in Israel. In Judg. 5 is given the grand triumphal ode, the "song of Deborah," which she wrote in grateful commemoration of that great deliverance. (See LAPIDOTH ØT0002240, JABIN ØT0001938 [2].)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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