A cud-chewing animal and a splitter of the hoof, sole mention of which is made at Deuteronomy 14:5, where it is included in the list of animals permitted to the Israelites for food. There is uncertainty as to which animal is meant by the Hebrew word di·shonʹ.
The addax antelope (Addax nasomaculatus), still surviving in the desert regions of North Africa, is often suggested as corresponding to the di·shonʹ of the Hebrew Scriptures. This antelope measures about 1 m (40 in.) high at the shoulder. Its spreading, cloven hooves equip it admirably for travel in the loose sands of the desert, where it can survive without water for extremely long periods. The widespread horns of this animal are twisted like a screw, making from one and a half to nearly three turns, and measuring about 1 m (40 in.) along the curve. With the exception of the belly, tail, hindquarters, and facial markings, which always remain white, the color of the addax antelope becomes darker in winter, changing from a sandy color to brownish. Another possibility is the Arabian oryx (Oryx leucoryx), also a desert antelope.