You are here
Show Full Text
The phrase “gopher wood” only appears once in the Old Testament in reference to Noah’s ark, meaning that it is unclear from Genesis what kind of wood the ark was built out of. The word “gopher” is simply a transliteration of the Hebrew word. Some Hebrew scholars have suggested that it derives from a word meaning “pitch” or “resin,” so the term “gopher wood” could then refer to some kind of resinous wood. The Aramaic Jewish translations known as the Targums understood “gopher wood” to mean “cedar wood.” The ancient Greek translation of the Bible translates “gopher wood” as “squared wood,” indicating that those ancient translators were also not sure what kind of wood was being described in Genesis 6.
Items in the BMC Archive are made publicly available for non-commercial, private use. Inclusion within the BMC Archive does not imply endorsement. Items do not represent the official views of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or of Book of Mormon Central.
Get the latest updates on Book of Mormon topics and research for free