Pronunciation: (iz'rē-ul, -rā-), [key]
1. a republic in SW Asia, on the Mediterranean: formed as a Jewish state May 1948. 3,921,700; 7984 sq. mi. (20,679 sq. km). Cap.: Jerusalem.
2. the people traditionally descended from Jacob; the Hebrew or Jewish people.
3. a name given to Jacob after he had wrestled with the angel. Gen. 32:28.
4. the northern kingdom of the Hebrews, including 10 of the 12 tribes, sometimes called by the name of the chief tribe, Ephraim. Cap.: Samaria.
5. a group considered by its members or by others as God's chosen people.
6. a male given name.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.