Gentile sages who visited Jesus, Mary, and Joseph in Bethlehem shortly after the birth of Jesus. According to the Gospel of Matthew, they were guided by a star and brought gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Because three gifts were given, the traditional story is that there were three wise men. (See Magi.)
mentioned in Dan. 2:12 included three classes, (1) astrologers, (2) Chaldeans, and (3) soothsayers. The word in the original (hakamim) probably means "medicine men. In Chaldea medicine was only a branch of magic. The "wise men" of Matt. 2:7, who came from the East to Jerusalem, were magi from Persia or Arabia.