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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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כמוש , an idol of the Moabites, Numbers 21:29 . The name is derived from a root which in Arabic signifies to hasten. For this reason, many believe Chemosh to be the sun, whose precipitate course might well procure it the name of swift. Some identify Chemosh with Ammon; and Macrobius shows that Ammon was the sun, whose rays were denoted by his horns. Calmet is of opinion that the god Hamanus and Apollo Chomeus, mentioned by Strabo and Ammianus Marcellinus, was Chamos, or the sun. These deities were worshipped in many parts of the east. Some, from the resemblance of the Hebrew Chamos with the Greek Comos, have thought Chamos to signify Bacchus. Jerom and most interpreters consider Chemosh and Peor as the same deity; but some think that Baal-Peor was Tammuz, or Adonis. To Chemosh Solomon erected an altar upon the Mount of Olives, 1 Kings 11:7 . As to the form of the idol Chemosh, the Scripture is silent; but if, according to Jerom, it were like Baal-Peor, it must have been of the beeve kind; as were, probably, all the Baals, though accompanied with various insignia. There can be little doubt that part of the religious services performed to Chemosh, as to Baal- Peor, consisted in revelling and drunkenness, obscenities and impurities of the grossest kinds. From Chemosh the Greeks seem to have derived their Κωμος , called by the Romans Comus, the god of feasting and revelling.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Chemosh'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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