From: Edward Hobbs (
Date: Wed Feb 04 1998 - 17:04:06 EST

George Athas asks:

So, have I understood the situation correctly:

* The suggestion of KAMHLON meaning "rope" was "invented" (for want of a
better word) to posit a different, less 'outrageous' meaning for the
saying of Jesus?
* This means that outside this suggestion, there is no word for "rope"
which is similar to KAMHLON?
* Another platform for rejecting the meaning of "rope" is an Arabic
proverb which is very similar to Jesus' saying?

If the Arabic proverb had its origins in Jesus' saying in the first
place, it does not really constitute a clinching argument that "camel"
is what Jesus said. However, if the Arabic proverb preceded Jesus'
saying then perhaps Jesus took his cue from it. In that case, there is
no doubt about the meaning of KAMHLON. Does anyone know how old this
proverb is?

Secondly, is there certainly no attestation to a word for rope that
looks like KAMHLON outside the NT?
<<<<<<<<<--------------end of George's message-------

No, this is to misunderstand LSJ. There IS attestation of the word KAMILOS
outside the NT. It is found at least in the Scholia to Aristophanes'
"The Flies" and in a tenth C. writer. And perhaps (so Glare) in an

The possibility that the word was coined for the purpose of explaining
the Jesus-saying is mentioned, but only as a "perhaps," to which the
counter-evidence of an Arabic term is given.

Edward Hobbs

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Sat Apr 20 2002 - 15:39:01 EDT