from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A sacrifice made to God by the ancient Hebrews at the Temple in Jerusalem.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An offering of any kind, devoted to God and therefore not to be appropriated to any other use; esp., an offering in fulfillment of a vow.
  • n. An alms basket; a vessel to receive gifts of charity; a treasury of the church, where offerings are deposited.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In Judaism, an offering of any sort to God, particularly in fulfilment of a VOW.
  • n. Same as corbana.
  • n. In the Coptic liturgy, the eucharistic oblate or host, divisible into nine parts, the central one of which is called the spoudicon. See despoticon and pearl.


Middle English, from Late Latin, from Greek korbān, from Hebrew qorbān, from qārab, to approach; see qrb in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)


  • In doing this they used the word corban, or some similar word; saying this thing is corban, i.e., is a gift to God, or is sacred to him.

    Barnes New Testament Notes

  • [7: 11] But you say, If a man says to his father or mother, It is a corban, which is a gift, by whatever you might be profited by me, [he shall be free]; [7: 12] and suffer him no longer to do any thing for his father or his mother; [7: 13] making the word of God of no effect by your tradition which you have delivered; and many such things you do.

    The New Testament Translated From the Original Greek, With Chronological Arrangement of the Sacred Books, and Improved Divisions of Chapters and Verses.

  • Property was often declared to be "corban" for other purposes than dedication to ecclesiastical use.

    Jesus the Christ A Study of the Messiah and His Mission According to Holy Scriptures Both Ancient and Modern

  • There are plentiful signs -- take the "corban" passage, for instance, still more, the details of the Prodigal Son -- of the same deep and tender thinking as we find in the most authentic sayings about marriage applied to the parental and brotherly relation.

    The History of David Grieve

  • To declare that any article of property real or personal, or any part or proportion of one's possessions was "corban," was generally understood as an averment that the property so characterized was dedicated to the temple, or at least was intended to be devoted to ecclesiastical purposes, and would eventually be turned over to the officials, though the donor might continue to hold possession during a specified period, extending even to the end of his life.

    Jesus the Christ A Study of the Messiah and His Mission According to Holy Scriptures Both Ancient and Modern

  • There were perhaps some who believed that the men upon whom the tower had fallen had deserved their fate; and this conception is the more probable if the generally accepted assumption be correct, that the calamity came upon the men while they were engaged under Roman employ in work on the aqueduct, for the construction of which Pilate had used the "corban" or sacred treasure, given by vow to the temple. [

    Jesus the Christ A Study of the Messiah and His Mission According to Holy Scriptures Both Ancient and Modern

  • Using such words as “catenae” (connected series), “timeous” (early), “moloch” (an object of sacrifice), and “corban” (an offering to God), Madame railed at the ethics of the press, which she continued to accuse of underplaying the dangers of communism.

    The Last Empress

  • Defenders will, however, note that quoting pagan authors is hardly corban by any sane standard, and will add that, no doubt, it is the final phrase in the quote, "Bless the children, give them triumph now," that Rowling really views as important.

    Book Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

  • The terms of our law, which are not empty sounds, will hardly find words that answer them in the Spanish or Italian, no scanty languages; much less, I think, could any one translate them into the Caribbee or Westoe tongues: and the versura of the Romans, or corban of the Jews, have no words in other languages to answer them; the reason whereof is plain, from what has been said.

    An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

  • I constantly told them that I was come, not to abolish their law, but to fulfil it; I had observed all their rites; I was circumcised as they all were; I was baptized like the most zealous of them; like them I paid the corban; like them I kept the Passover; and ate, standing, lamb cooked with lettuce.

    A Philosophical Dictionary


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