Narrow Strip of Wilderness

Rough boundary terrain

Narrow Strip of Wilderness

The Narrow Strip of Wilderness is a geographical feature described in the Book of Mormon. Located between the lands of Nephi and Zarahemla, this terrain served as a divider and a boundary between the two regions (Alma 22:27). The strip ran from the east sea to the west sea, indicating a significant breadth, although no specific measurements are provided in the text. The term ‘wilderness’ suggests that this strip was not heavily populated or cultivated, though it was evidently navigable as it was crossed in movements between the two lands.

Movements from Nephi to Zarahemla are described as “down,” while those from Zarahemla to Nephi are described as “up” (Mosiah 7:2–4; 8:2; 9:3; Alma 17:8; Omni 1:13), suggesting a difference in elevation, with Zarahemla presumably at a lower altitude than Nephi. The phrase parallels the term “narrow neck of land,” with both descriptions implying an area narrower than the surrounding land.

Similar to the narrow neck, the strip and neck imply an extended parallel shape, akin to a bandage strip or a human neck, demonstrating a length greater than their width. Despite being wilderness, the strip was evidently a significant geographic feature and played a key role in the demarcation and separation of the Nephite and Lamanite lands.


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