- People who for the most part exist on the move, taking sheep, cattle, and asses with them. None of the OT characters are nomads: the patriarchs led only a semi-nomadic life since their wanderings were interrupted by periods at Shechem (Abraham, Gen. 12:6), Gerar (Isaac, Gen. 26:6), and Paddam-Aram (Jacob, Gen. 28:5; 31:17–18). During the wilderness journeys after the Exodus [[➝ Exodus, the]], the Israelites grazed their flocks around the oasis at Kadesh-Barnea.Nomadic life was harsh; it enjoined a good deal of mutual dependence and of hospitality to strangers; but the austerity was viewed with nostalgia by prophets who contrasted the simplicity of living in tents and observing the festivals with the luxury of urban culture (Hos. 2:14 f.) and the apostasy of Canaanite religion.
Dictionary of the Bible.
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