A curved or sharply angled piece of metal or other material, sometimes barbed.
Gold hooks were used in the tabernacle to fasten together the two large sections of the embroidered linen covering, and copper hooks for the two sections of the goat’s hair covering. (Ex 26:1, 5, 6, 7, 10, 11; 36:13, 18; 39:33) The curtain between the Holy and the Most Holy was hung on hooks, evidently of gold (Ex 26:31-33), as was also the screen to the tabernacle entrance.—Ex 26:36, 37.
Fishhooks were used by ancient fishermen. (Hab 1:14, 15; Isa 19:1, 6-8; Mt 17:24-27) Butcher hooks are mentioned in the Bible. (Am 4:2) Hooks, possibly thorns, were also employed for leading animals, particularly wild beasts.—Eze 19:3, 4, 6, 9, ftn.
Human captives were sometimes led by hooks in the lips, nose, or tongue. An Assyrian pictorial representation shows the king holding three captives by cords fastened to hooks in their lips while he blinds one of them with a spear. It was, therefore, understandable to King Sennacherib of Assyria when Jehovah spoke figuratively to him through the prophet Isaiah: “I shall certainly put my hook in your nose and my bridle between your lips, and I shall indeed lead you back by the way by which you have come.”—2Ki 19:20, 21, 28; Isa 37:29.
Jehovah figuratively spoke to Pharaoh of Egypt, in whom Israel had foolishly trusted for support against Babylon: “I will put hooks in your jaws . . . And I will bring you up out of the midst of your Nile canals . . . And I will abandon you to the wilderness . . . And all the inhabitants of Egypt will have to know that I am Jehovah, for the reason that they proved to be, as a support, a reed to the house of Israel.” (Eze 29:1-7) The language was fitting; the historian Herodotus (II, 70) stated that the Egyptians used a hook to capture the crocodile and draw it out of the water. Jehovah also foretold that he would put hooks in the jaws of “Gog of the land of Magog” and would bring him forth to the final attack upon God’s people and to his own execution.—Eze 38:1-4; 39:1-4.