Definition of teraphim in English:


Line breaks: tera|phim
Pronunciation: /ˈtɛrəfɪm


[also treated as singular]
  • Small images or cult objects used as domestic deities or oracles by ancient Semitic peoples: Rachel stole the teraphim, the household gods of her family
    More example sentences
    • The existence of the teraphim, or cult objects (Rachel, Michal) is an indication of family worship that is indirectly shown by the discovery of hundreds of figurines (mostly female).
    • There followed a confrontation between them, in which Laban accused Jacob of stealing his teraphim (household images, or ‘gods’, used for divination and supposed to ‘protect’ a home from evil forces).
    • Made in many sizes, but always in human form, the teraphim was thought to be the giver of a prosperous existence.


late Middle English: via late Latin from Greek theraphin, from Hebrew tĕrāp̱īm.

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