.Joshua 5:11 (KJV)

11 And they did eat of the old corn of the land on the morrow after the passover, unleavened cakes, and parched corn in the selfsame day. 12 And the manna ceased on the morrow after they had eaten of the old corn of the land; neither had the children of Israel manna any more; but they did eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year.

After crossing the jordan we are told that the manna ceased,they ate the old corn of the land.Jericho was said to be shut up nothing entered or left,so where did they get the old corn?


2 Answers 2


The pivotal Hebrew term implied in that question is עבור (OBUR). More probably, this term was derived from עבר (OBR), ‘to pass’. Some versions (for example, KJV, Darby, Webster, Young) translate this term suggesting the sense was “(some food) that is remained (passed away) (from the land)”, then, some old stuff to eat, like ‘old corn’. The emphasis, in this case, is on the concept of ‘what is passing on (away)’, ‘what is old’.

But, another sense was mentioned by Adam Clarke (Commentary on the Bible, ad locum): “The noun, though of doubtful signification, is evidently derived from עבר abar, to pass over, to go beyond; and here it may be translated simply the produce, that which passes from the land into the hands of the cultivator […].” (granted, in the case of that-epoch-Israelites, they weren’t ‘cultivators’, but simply ‘gatherers’; in every case, the sense remains the same). John Parkhurst wrote: “As a N[oun] עבור produce of the land, q[uaque] d[ie] [that is, ‘every day, daily], what passes or comes from it […].” Or, like the English-speaking-people of today, we may say, ‘to take pot luck (for meal)’. Like you see, the emphasis, in this case, is on the concept of “what is passed (from the land to the people)”.

The LXX seems to back this conclusion, translating the Hebrew expression הארץ מעבור with σιτου της γης, ‘grain of the earth’, but also, ‘food of the earth’. It is useful to remember that the originating Greek verb of the term σιτου is σιτευω/σιτεω, that means – basically – to feed > to eat > to nourish > to make fat (in the analogous manner of the Hebrew term לחם, ‘bread’ < ‘food’). The Jerome’s Vulgate has de frugibus terrae, ‘from the fruits of the earth (soil)’. It is interesting that frugalis derived from the word frugis (‘fruit’). What frugalis did mean? Cortelazzo-Zolli, ‘Dizionario Etimologico della lingua italiana’ (on the Italian lemma frugale, ‘frugal’ [vol. 2, p. 461]): “prob. ‘frugalis’ era chi viveva dei prodotti della terra’ (‘prob[ably], ‘frugalis’ was who lived from the earth products’).

I hope this is useful for you.


It seems to me like מעבור הארץ should be translated as "since they got/came to that land". Till than they eat the Man but after they passed/finished their journy and came to Cnaan they eat from what that land offered them.

The מ here is pointing to " time".

The problem for this translation is the Niqud, but since we know that in other places on the OT the Niqud is not always accurate we can assume that the ו should be with Holam and not Shuruk.

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