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bulrush

[boo l-ruhsh] /ˈbʊlˌrʌʃ/
noun
1.
(in Biblical use) the papyrus, Cyperus papyrus.
2.
any of various rushes of the genera Scirpus and Typha.
Origin
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English bulrish papyrus, probably bull1 + rish rush2
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for bulrushes

bulrush

/ˈbʊlˌrʌʃ/
noun
1.
a grasslike cyperaceous marsh plant, Scirpus lacustris, used for making mats, chair seats, etc
2.
a popular name for reed mace (sense 1)
3.
a biblical word for papyrus (sense 1)
Word Origin
C15 bulrish, bul- perhaps from bull1 + rishrush², referring to the largeness of the plant; sense 2 derived from the famous painting by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836–1912), Dutch-born English painter, of the finding of the infant Moses in the "bulrushes" — actually reed mace
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bulrushes
bulrush
also bullrush, type of tall plant growing in or near water (in Biblical use, the Egyptian papyrus), mid-15c., bolroysche, from rush (n.); the signification of bull is doubtful.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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bulrushes in the Bible

(1.) In Isa. 58:5 the rendering of a word which denotes "belonging to a marsh," from the nature of the soil in which it grows (Isa. 18:2). It was sometimes platted into ropes (Job. 41:2; A.V., "hook," R.V., "rope," lit. "cord of rushes"). (2.) In Ex. 2:3, Isa. 18:2 (R.V., "papyrus") this word is the translation of the Hebrew _gome_, which designates the plant as absorbing moisture. In Isa. 35:7 and Job 8:11 it is rendered "rush." This was the Egyptian papyrus (papyrus Nilotica). It was anciently very abundant in Egypt. The Egyptians made garments and shoes and various utensils of it. It was used for the construction of the ark of Moses (Ex. 2:3, 5). The root portions of the stem were used for food. The inside bark was cut into strips, which were sewed together and dried in the sun, forming the papyrus used for writing. It is no longer found in Egypt, but grows luxuriantly in Palestine, in the marshes of the Huleh, and in the swamps at the north end of the Lake of Gennesaret. (See CANE.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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14
17
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