From Academic Kids

Template:Dablink Jonah (יוֹנָה "Dove", Standard Hebrew Yona, Tiberian Hebrew Yōnāh) was a person in the Bible Old Testament and Jewish Tanakh, the son of Amittai, from the Galilean village of Gath-hepher, near Nazareth.

He was a prophet of the ten-tribe kingdom of Israel, and predicted the restoration of the ancient boundaries (2 Kings 14:25-27) of the kingdom. This prophecy was already fulfilled during the reign of Jeroboam II, under whom Jonah exercised his ministry. Timewise, this may mean he was contemporary with the prophets Hosea and Amos; or possibly he preceded them. If so, and if the Book of Jonah was, in fact, written by the prophet himself, Jonah is the very oldest of all the prophets whose writings we possess. He is often placed in the 8th century BC.

His personal history is mainly to be gathered from the Book of Jonah, traditionally ascribed to the prophet himself, although this is not stated in Scripture. In the book Jonah is a reluctant and uncompassionate prophet. This story contains a two-fold characterization of Jonah: (1) a reluctant prophet of doom to heathen Nineveh, and (2) a "Son of man" type. The character of Jonah, who wants Ninevah destroyed, is contrasted with that of God, who is compassionate toward Jew or Gentile, human or animal.

Jonah in the Quran

In the Qur'an he is known as Yunus (see Similarities between the Bible and the Qur'an).

Jonah and Jason

In 1995 the classicist Gildas Hamel revived a long-forgotten theory connecting the story of Jonah with that of the Greek hero Jason ("Taking the Argo to Nineveh: Jonah and Jason in a Mediterranean context," Judaism Summer, 1995; online ( Drawing on the Book of Jonah and Greco-Roman sources—including Greek vases and the accounts of Apollonius of Rhodes, Valerius Flaccus and Orphic Argonautica—Hamel identifies a number of shared motifs, including the names of the heroes, the presence of a dove, the idea of "fleeing" like the wind and causing a storm, the attitude of the sailors, the presence of a sea-monster or dragon threatening the hero or swallowing him, and the form and the word used for the "gourd" (kikayon, a hapax legomenon within the Hebrew Bible). Hamel argues the Hebrew author was reacting to and adapting this mythological material to communicate his own, quite different message.

External links

  • Jewish Encyclopedia (1901-06) ( offers a more modern critical and historical appraisal of the manuscript traditions, the age and origin of Jonah, its inclusion into the canon, etc.
  • Jonah on the Web (, annotated guide to 200 sites and 150 pictures of Jonah
  • Read Jonah at Bible Gateway (
  • Study Notes on Jonah (
  • Jonah ( An Overview of Jonah


This entry incorporates text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897, with some modernisation.
de:Jona (Prophet)

fr:Jonas pl:Jonasz (postać biblijna)


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