COPYRIGHT Tim Lovett © June 2004 


The Window     tsohar 

Gen 6:16a. A window shalt though make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt though finish it above; (KJV)

Gen 6:16a. A light shalt though make to the ark, and to a cubit shalt though finish it upward; (RV)   

Gen 6:16a. You shall make a window for the ark, and you shall finish it to a cubit from above; (NKJV)

Gen 6:16a. Light thou shalt make to the ark and at (the rate of) a cubit thou shalt make it throughout from (to) above. (Interlinear Literal. G Berry 1897)

A window shalt though make...

The window (tsohar) is not the usual word for window. In 24 appearances the KJV translated tsohar as; noon 11, noonday 9, day 1, midday 1, noontide + 06256 1, window 1. So window is a unique meaning for this word, all the other times it means noon.

It looks like the tsohar was for light. But light is   'owr, as in "Let there be light" or    ma'owr for a light or lamp.  

So why the noon or midday hint? Probably because it was in the roof (above) and maybe towards the middle of the roof (we would say 12 o'clock position).   


Ventilation: Ridge ventilation is logical. Modern factories utilize a ridge opening to allow rising warm air to escape. A central opening is an appropriate location for ventilation in the ark, assuming of course that the tsohar was (preferably) not glazed. Whether the tsohar was predominantly for light or ventilation is perhaps not possible to determine conclusively, but it is easy to imagine that God knew a light opening would ventilate successfully. a cubit shalt though finish it above;

This is most often interpreted to mean a continuous slotted "cubit-tall window" (Ref 1, p38). Woodmorappe hints at a perimeter location (Ref 1, Fig 5 p38), but the Korean researchers (Ref 2) kept the window away from the side of the vessel. (Reducing the chance of collecting deflected wave spray and green water on a big roll. In fact, their design limit was set as the dipping of this corner into the water, so a perimeter window was not a good idea). The diagram below shows the Korean form, which is almost universally accepted by creationists. See Ark Modelers and  Rod Walsh Ark

Image AiG

There is a problem here. It is raining and there are waves rocking the vessel. Even a generous pitch of the roof will not prevent water cascading in through the window. A far worse situation occurs when the ark meets a cross wind and rolls to lee side. The roof facing the wind is now at least level, if not reversed, and the wind is helping to send it straight inside. 

Tim Lovett Juy 2004

And we haven't even started to consider gale winds and high seas, where the windows might be better off with a waterproof hatch. (This comes later)


Morris (Ref 3, p182) gives another possibility. "It has also been suggested that the word "window" might refer to a low wall extending around the Ark above the roof, providing a sort of cistern as a means of water supply". For collecting water there may be some merit if the sloshing water can be stilled somehow. What is interesting is that the idea probably stems from the Hebrew "from above". 

Here is another interpretation. Make the bottom of the window one cubit above the roof. Now the window finishes to a cubit from above the roof. 'You shall make a window for the ark, and you shall finish it to a cubit from above;' (Gen 6:16a NKJV)

Image Tim Lovett Juy 2004

Hence a wall works better than a sloped roof because it would take some time to fill, by which stage the ark has rolled back again and dumped the water overboard. This is the normal way to build a skylight on a ship. The "wall" is called hatch combing. A camber on the roof similar to the deck of a modern ship should suffice, and here is where it gets very interesting. (For camber information and roof design, see Transverse Section)


Window Hatches?

In timber ships the gun ports, especially the lowest ones, were sealed by hinged doors. Note the thickness and small size. Sealing was not very sophisticated, and a little water getting in during a storm would be the least of their worries. Note the ropes to open and close the door.

Gunports of timber ships (Ref 4 p 31 subfig 17 & 18) 

Whether the light (tsohar) windows needed hatches might be questionable. It depends on the sea state. If doors like these were employed on the roof the ark would be nearly bombproof. The high pressures of wave slamming loads at the lowest gunports (almost on the water level) are unlikely to be found on the top of the ark, but worst case rogue wave loadings might dictate a relatively robust construction.

The question to be addressed is whether green water (actual waves) will make it to the roof, rather than simply foam, spray and rain. Here's some green water . Not quite sure how they took that photo, but probably from the bridge looking towards the bow. This carrier is probably sitting a lot lower in the water than the ark, but is slightly larger. The blue looks a bit fake - but notice how much spray around - it's all white.

Link to "Removal of the covering of the Ark"




1. Noah's Ark. A Feasibility Study. John Woodmorappe. Institute for Creation Research, Santee. 1994. 

2. Safety Investigation of Noah’s Ark in a Seaway by S.W. Hong, S.S. Na, B.S. Hyun, S.Y. Hong, D.S. Gong, K.J. Kang, S.H. Suh, K.H. Lee, and Y.G. Je.  Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal 8(1):26–35, 1994.

3. The Genesis Record. Morris H M Creation-Life Publishers, San Diego. 1976.

4. Das Schiffstypen Lexikon Transpress VEB Verlag fur Verkehrswesen 1983.  English Ed. Dictionary of Ship Types: Ships Boats and rafts under Oar and Sail. Dudszus A and Henriot E, Conway Maritime Press, London 1986