Dan is “a young lion which springs out of Bashan.” Whilst Jacob compared him to a serpent by the way, which suddenly bites a horse's feet, so that its rider falls backward, Moses gives greater prominence to the strength which Dan would display in conflict with foes, by calling him a young lion which suddenly springs out of its ambush. The reference to Bashan has nothing to do with the expedition of the Danites against Laish, in the valley of Rehoboth (Jdg 18:28), as this valley did not belong to Bashan. It is to be explained from the simple fact, that in the regions of eastern Bashan, which abound with caves, and more especially in the woody western slopes of Jebel Hauran, many lions harboured, which rushed forth from the thicket, and were very dangerous enemies to the herds of Bashan. Even if no other express testimonies to this fact are to be found it may be inferred from the description given of the eastern spurs of Antilibanus in the Song of Sol. (Son 4:8), as the abodes of lions and leopards. The meaning leap forth, spring out, is confirmed by both the context and dialects, though the word only occurs here.