the Fourth Week of Lent
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible
PHÅ’NIX was a good harbour on the S. coast of Crete. It has been identified almost certainly with Loutro , which is said to be the only harbour W. of Fair Havens where a ship of such size as that by which St. Paul travelled (it was a cargo ship, but had crew and passengers on board numbering altogether 276) could find shelter. Strabo speaks of PhÅ“nix as being on an isthmus ( i.e. a narrow part of the island), and apparently as being in the territory of Lappa, which was not far from Loutro. Other authorities speak of it as if it were near Aradena, which is only a mile from Loutro. The identification would therefore be certain but for St. Luke’s description of the harbour of PhÅ“nix as looking ‘towards the S.W. and the N.W.’ ( Acts 27:12 ), whereas the harbour of Loutro looks towards the East. Hence some identified PhÅ“nix with a harbour a little farther W., of which we have no evidence that it could accommodate so large a ship. It is perhaps more probable that St. Luke makes a mistake in his description of a harbour which he never reached. The RV [Note: Revised Version.] understands the Greek to mean ‘in the direction in which the S.W. and N.W. winds blow,’ and therefore translates ‘looking N.E. and S.E.’ This may have been a sailor’s way of expressing it, but we have no authority for it.
A. E. Hillard.
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Hastings, James. Entry for 'Phoenix'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​hdb/​p/phoenix.html. 1909.