• Hebrew: probably lavah, to bend or twist


An enormous beast. The term is found in the Latin Vulgate in Job 3:8, 40:20; Isaiah 27:1. The same Hebrew term livyathan, is found in Psalms 73:14 and 103:26. In these two last places the Vulgate renders it draco, a dragon. Buxtorf gives the first meaning, whale. The generally accepted meaning is crocodile. It may have had the indefinite signification of a monster, which at times was applied to the crocodile, and at other times to the whale. In Psalms 103:26; Job 3:8, 40:20, it surely means the whale, especially in Psalms 103:25-26, where the home of leviathan is “the sea great and wide.”

MLA Citation

  • “leviathan”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 6 February 2013. Web. 17 February 2019. <>