Tuesday, April 19, 2022
Bible & Archaeology (University of Iowa)

The name Ḥuldah comes from the Hebrew חלדה (ḥuldāh), where it is the name of a prophetess living in Jerusalem during the reign of Josiah in 2 Kings 22:14. The name possibly comes from the Hebrew word חלד (ḥoled), which means "weasel, mole." The priest Hilkiah turned to the prophetess Ḥuldah when Josiah asks for someone to "inquire of the Lord" about the book of the law found during the cleaning of the Temple. Interestingly, the double-arched and triple-arched gates (now walled-up) in the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, which once opened through the wall to stairs leading up onto the plaza, are called the Ḥuldah Gates, likely because they "burrowed beneath" the Royal Stoa described by Josephus that once stood on the southern wall—as a mole would do.