Barabbas (bərăbˈəs) [key] [Aram., = son of the father], bandit held in jail at the time of Jesus' arrest. Pontius Pilate, who, according to the Gospels, annually released a prisoner at Passover, offered to release Jesus, but the people demanded his death and Barabbas' delivery.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.