Joel, in the Bible. 1 Prophet of the book of Joel. 2 Son of Samuel. He also appears under the name Vashni.
Joel, prophetic book of the Bible. It is a collection of the oracles of an otherwise unknown prophet, dated variously from the 9th to the 3d cent. B.C., though a date in c.400 B.C. is likely. A locust plague gives the prophet the prextext for summoning the whole nation to repentance; the people, on repentance, will be rewarded with present as well as future blessings, this being a prophecy concerning the Day of the Lord—a day on which the faithful will be vindicated while the Gentile enemies of the people of God will be overthrown. H. W. Wolff, Joel and Amos (1977); W. S. Prinsloo, The Theology of the Book of Joel (1985).
Barlow, Joel, 1754-1812, American writer and diplomat, b. Redding, Conn., grad. Yale, 1778. He was one of the Connecticut Wits and a major contributor to their satirical poem The Anarchiad (1786-87). His own epic, The Vision of Columbus (1787), brought him fame in America and Europe and was revised later as The Columbiad (1807). Inspired by his friend Thomas Paine, he wrote Advice to the Privileged Orders (1792), urging that the state must represent not a class but the people and must be responsible for the welfare of the individual. His Letter to the National Convention of France on the Defects in the Constitution of 1791 won him French citizenship. His best-known lighter work is a mock eulogy, The Hasty-Pudding (1796). Appointed U.S. consul to Algiers in 1795, Barlow succeeded in releasing many American prisoners and in negotiating treaties with Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli. Sent to Europe in 1811 to negotiate a commercial treaty with Napoleon I, he was caught in the disastrous retreat of the armies from Moscow and died from exposure.

See study by A. L. Ford (1971).

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