Bit and Bridle
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Bit [Heb. meṯeg̱—‘bit,’ ‘bridle’; Gk. chalinós (Jas. 3:3)]; AV also BRIDLE; NEB also HOOK, BRIDLE; BRIDLE [Heb. resen (Ps. 32:9; Isa. 30:28), maḥsôm—‘muzzle’ (Ps. 39:1); Gk. chalinós (Rev. 14:20), chalinagōgéō (Jas. 1:26; 3:2)]; NEB also BIT, MUZZLE, etc. The two words occur in conjunction (meṯeg̱
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
BIT. A part of the bridle or halter inserted in the animal’s mouth to which the reins were fastened to control the animal’s movement (Ps 32:9; Jas 3:3). See Bridle.
Easton’s Bible Dictionary
Bitthe curb put into the mouths of horses to restrain them. The Hebrew word (metheg) so rendered in Ps. 32:9 is elsewhere translated “bridle” (2 Kings 19:28; Prov. 26:3; Isa. 37:29). Bits were generally made of bronze or iron, but sometimes also of gold or silver. In James 3:3 the Authorized Version
Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary
Bit and Bridle
BIT AND BRIDLE —the bridle refers to the headgear of a harness; the bit is the metal mouthpiece by which the bridle works to control an animal. These two words appear together in Psalm 32:9. James applied the term “bridle” as a symbol of the believer’s submission to God’s control: “If anyone . . . thinks
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
BIT AND BRIDLE<bri’-d’-l> (מֶתֶג־וֶרֶסֶן‎ [methegh wa-recen]): The two words occur in conjunction (Psalm 32:9 the King James Version, “Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding; whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee”; the Revised
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
Bit, of a horse
Bit (of a horse). To take the bit in (or between) his teeth. To be obstinately self-willed; to make up one’s mind not to yield. When a horse has a mind to run away, he catches the bit “between his teeth,” and the driver has no longer control over him.“Mr. X. will not yield. He has taken the bit between
Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary
BIT Metal bar fastened to the muzzle end of the horse’s bridle. The bit is inserted in the horse’s mouth between the teeth and is used to control the horse. The bit had loops on either end for attaching the reins. Some bits from the biblical period have spikes which would have stuck in the side of the
The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, Volumes 1–5
Bit and Bridle
BIT AND BRIDLE, brīʹdʹl (מֶתֶג־וָבֶסֶן‎, methegh wā-reṣen): The two words occur in conjunction (Ps 32:9 AV, “Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding; whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee”; RV “else they will not come near unto thee,”
The New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, Volumes 1–5
BIT [מֶתֶגmethegh; χαλινός chalinos]. The empty space between a horse’s incisor and molar teeth provides a place for a bit connected by cheek pieces on each side of the mouth to the reins. Pressure exerted through the reins influences the HORSE to turn or stop, thus providing some control. The use
Key passages
Ps 32:9

Do not be like a horse or like a mule, without understanding; that needs his tackle—bridle and rein—for restraint or he would not come near you.

Jas 3:3

And if we put bits in the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we also guide their whole bodies.

See also