Put (biblical figure)

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Phut or Put (Hebrew: פוט pûṭ; Septuagint Greek Φουδ Phoud) is the third son of Ham (one of the sons of Noah), in the biblical Table of Nations (Genesis 10:6; cf. 1 Chronicles 1:8). The name Put (or Phut) refers to the homeland of the Phoenicians,[1] it is also used in the Bible for the people or nation said to be descended from him, placed in Ancient Libya, but a few scholars proposed the Land of Punt[2] known from Ancient Egyptian annals.

Historical records[edit]

Josephus writes: "Phut also was the founder of Libya, and called the inhabitants Phutites (Phoutes), from himself: there is also a river in the country of Moors which bears that name; whence it is that we may see the greatest part of the Grecian historiographers mention that river and the adjoining country by the appellation of Phut (Phoute): but the name it has now has been by change given it from one of the sons of Mezraim, who was called Lybyos." (AotJ Book 1:6/2). Pliny the Elder Nat. Hist. 5.1 and Ptolemy Geog. iv.1.3 both place the river Phuth on the west side of Mauretania (modern Morocco). Ptolemy also mentions a city Putea in Libya (iv.3.39).

A Libyan connection has likewise been inferred from Nahum 3:9, where it is said that "Put and Lubim" were the helpers of Egypt. Other biblical verses consistently refer to the descendants of Put as warriors. In Jeremiah 46:9, they are again described as being supporters of Egypt. Ezekiel mentions them three times: in 27:10, as supporters of Tyre (Phoenicia), in 30:5 again as supporting Egypt, and in 38:5, as supporters of Gog. The Septuagint Greek (LXX) substitutes Libues in Ezekiel where the Hebrew Bible refers to Put. However, the LXX reads Put in Isaiah 66:19, in place of Pul in the Hebrew.

The Libyan tribe of pỉdw shows up in Egyptian records by the 22nd dynasty, while a Ptolemaic text from Edfu refers to the t3 n nꜣ pỉt.w "the land of the Pitu". The word was later written in Demotic as Pỉt, and as Phaiat in Coptic, a name for Libya Aegypti, northwestern Egypt.

A fragment of Nebuchadnezzar II's annals mentions his campaign in 567 in Egypt, and defeating the soldiers of Putu Yavan, i.e. Greek Libya (Cyrene). A multilingual stele from al-Kabrīt, dating to the reign of Darius I refers to the Put as the province of Putiya (Old Persian) and Puṭa (Neo-Babylonian), where the equivalent text written in Egyptian has tꜣ ṯmḥw "Libya".

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Krahmalkov, Charles R. (2000-11-28). A Phoenician-Punic Grammar. BRILL. p. 1. ISBN 9789004294202.
  2. ^ Sadler, Jr., Rodney (2009). "Put". In Katharine Sakenfeld (ed.). The New Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible. 4. Nashville: Abingdon Press. pp. 691–92.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Baker, David W. 1992. "Put". In The Anchor Bible Dictionary, edited by David Noel Freedman. Vol. 5 of 6 vols. New York: Doubleday. 560
  • Graefe, Erhart. 1975. "Der libysche Stammesname p(j)d(j)/pjt im spätzeitlichen Onomastikon." Enchoria: Zeitschrift für Demotistik und Koptologie 5:13–17.