Who were Metraton and Sandalphon?

The "prince of the world" was identified by later writers with the angel Metatron. The name is probably borrowed from the Latin metator, which signifies "a precursor," and he was regarded as the angel who "went before" the Israelites in the wilderness.[1] He must have been held at one time in very high reverence, since special mention is made of the fact that prayers must not be offered to him.

Metatron cooperates with God in the teaching of the young. While God devotes the last three hours of the day to this work, Metatron is in charge during the remainder of the day.[2] Coupled with Metatron is another angel named Sandalphon, a word from the Greek meaning "co-brother." The tallest of the angels, Sandalphon stands behind the celestial chariot[3] and weaves crowns out of the prayers which are offered for his Maker.[4]


[1] Exodus 23:20
[2] BT Avodah Zara 3b
[3] Ezek. 1:15 ff.
[4] BT Hagigah 13b