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Joseph interprets dreams in prison
Excerpt from the Lexham Bible Dictionary, the most advanced Bible dictionary.
An officer of high rank in ancient Egyptian, Persian, Assyrian, and Jewish courts.It was the duty of the cupbearer to fill the king’s cup and deliver it to him. Pharaoh’s chief cupbearer is mentioned as part of Joseph’s story (Gen 40:1–23; 41:9). Nehemiah was cupbearer to King Artaxerxes of Persia (Neh 1:11). King Solomon also had cupbearers (1 Kgs 10:5; 2 Chr 9:4).According to Xenophon, ancient cupbearers drank some of the king’s wine to see if it was poisoned before they offered the cup to him (Cyropaedia 1.3.9). Cupbearers could also have other duties, as indicated by Tobit 1:22: “Ahikar was cupbearer, keeper of the signet ring, administrator, and accountant.”
Dictionaries
The Lexham Bible Dictionary
Cupbearer
Cupbearer (מַשְׁקֶה‎, mashqeh). An officer of high rank in ancient Egyptian, Persian, Assyrian, and Jewish courts.It was the duty of the cupbearer to fill the king’s cup and deliver it to him. Pharaoh’s chief cupbearer is mentioned as part of Joseph’s story (Gen 40:1–23; 41:9). Nehemiah was cupbearer
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Cupbearer
Cupbearer. Official whose primary duty was to taste the wine served to the king as a precaution against poisoning.See Trades and Occupations.
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Baker
Baker [Heb. ’ōp̱eh]. The term was derived from a verb meaning “bake bread,” but from an early period included miscellaneous cooking also (Gen. 40:1–41:13; 1 S. 8:13; Hos. 7:4). Bread was usually baked in an oven or on the surfaces of heated stones. Confections were baked in pans or on griddles (Lev.
Cupbearer
Cupbearer [Heb. mašqeh-‘one giving drink’] (1 K. 10:5; 2 Ch. 9:4; Neh. 1:11). An officer of high rank at ancient oriental courts, whose duty it was to serve the wine at the king’s table. On account of the constant fear of plots and intrigues, a person must be regarded as thoroughly trustworthy to hold
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
Baker
BAKER One who prepares food. In biblical times, the baker operated in the home (Gn 19:3), in the public bakery (Jer 37:21), and in the palaces of kings and nobles (Gn 40:1–22; 41:10, 13; 1 Sm 8:13), preparing bread and cakes from the basic staples of oil and flour. The Israelites fleeing from Egypt baked
Cup-Bearer
CUP-BEARER Official whose primary duty was to taste the wine served to the king as a precaution against poisoning. Cup-bearers frequented the courts of kings and high officials in antiquity (1 Kgs 10:5). These men were close to those in authority and sometimes exercised considerable influence. Generally
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
Baker
baker. While baking (Heb. ’aphah) was a normal daily activity of women engaged in the preparation of meals, the specialized profession of baker (’opheh) developed in urban centers. Jer. 37:21 speaks of a “street of the bakers,” where those engaged in this trade must have had their shops. Baked products
Cupbearer
cupbearer, a member of a royal court whose full duties are unknown. The first servant of Pharaoh imprisoned with Joseph had apparently been Pharaoh’s cupbearer (Gen. 40:11): the description there (“Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand”) suggests that a cupbearer literally had responsibility for providing food
The New Bible Dictionary, Third Edition
Cupbearer
CUPBEARER (Heb. mašqeh, ‘one giving to drink’). The ‘butler’ of Joseph’s pharaoh (Gn. 40:1ff.) both in Heb. and by function was the king’s cupbearer. His office as depicted in Gn. 40 corresponds in part to the (wider) Egyp. wdpw of early times and especially the Middle Kingdom period (broadly, c. 2000–1600
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Cupbearer
CupbearerA prestigious position in the royal courts of the ancient Near East. The cupbearer would serve wine (Gen. 40:13), but also tasted it as protection against poison. A 9th-century b.c.e. jar from ʿEn-gev is inscribed “the cupbearers” and may indicate an amount of wine the cupbearers would bring
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Cupbearer
Cupbearer (Heb. mašqeh “one who gives drink”). A high official in the ancient Near East who served the king his wine. Because it was common to dispose of monarchs by poisoning, a cupbearer had to be trustworthy to win the confidence of the ruler. It was a mark of honor that Nehemiah, a Jew, was given
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Cupbearer
Cupbearer, an officer of high rank with Egyptian, Persian, and Assyrian as well as Jewish monarchs. 1 Kings 10:5. It was his duty to fill the king’s cup and present it to him personally. Neh. 1:11. The chief cupbearer, or butler, to the king of Egypt was the means of raising Joseph to his high position.
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
Cupbearer
CUPBEARER (Heb. mashqeh, “one who gives drink to”). That officer of the household who tasted the wine and passed it to those at the table. He was often chosen for his personal beauty and attractions and in ancient oriental courts was always a person of rank and importance. From the confidential nature
Easton’s Bible Dictionary
Cup-bearer
Cup-beareran officer of high rank with Egyptian, Persian, Assyrian, and Jewish monarchs. The cup-bearer of the king of Egypt is mentioned in connection with Joseph’s history (Gen. 40:1–21; 41:9). Rabshakeh (q.v.) was cup-bearer in the Assyrian court (2 Kings 18:17). Nehemiah filled this office to the
Harper’s Bible Dictionary
Baker
Bakerbaker, one engaged in the process of baking. While baking (Heb. ’aphah) was a normal daily activity of women engaged in the preparation of meals, the specialized profession of baker (’opheh) developed in urban centers. Jer. 37:21 speaks of a ‘street of the bakers,’ where those engaged in this
Cupbearer
Cupbearercupbearer, a confidant in a royal entourage (1 Kings 10:5). The cupbearer could exercise influence on a king’s policies (Neh. 1:11-2:8). The first servant of the Pharaoh imprisoned with Joseph had held the Pharaoh’s cup ‘in my hand …’ (Gen. 40:11), suggesting that the cupbearer carried responsibility
Key passages
Ge 40:1–19

And it happened that after these things the cupbearer of the king of Egypt and his baker did wrong against their lord, against the king of Egypt. And Pharaoh was angry with his two officials, with the chief cupbearer and chief baker. And he put them in custody …

See also
Ge 41:12;
See also