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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(the Latinized form of the Hebrews prefix כְּפִראּ, Kefar', the "construct form" of Kaophar', כָּפָר, from the root of the same form signifying "to cover," Gesenisi, Thesaur. p. 707), one of the numerous words employed in the Bible (and still oftener in later or, rabbinical Hebrew) to denote a village or collection of dwellings smaller than a city (Reland, Palcest. p. 516). See IR-. Stanley proposes to render it by "hamlet" (Palest. App. § 87), to distinguish its occurrences from those of Chavvah, Chatser, Bayith, and other similar words. As an appellative it is found only three times: 1 Chronicles 27:25, Song of Solomon 7:11, and 1 Samuel 6:18 (in the last the pointing being different, Ko'pher, כֹּפֶּר ); but in neither is there anything to enable us to fix any special force to the word. In names of places, it occurs in CHEPHAR-AKMMONAI, CHEPHIRAH, CAPHAR- SALAMA, and those here following; also CAPERNAUM, CAPARCOTIA, etc. But the number of places compounded therewith mentioned in the Talmud shows that the name became a much commoner one at a time subsequent to the Biblical history. See the words beginning with KEPHAR-. In Arabic, the corresponding local epithet Kefr is in frequent use (see the lists in Robinson's Researches, 3, Append.).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Caphar'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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