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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Latin

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LATIN . In such provinces as Judæa the Latin language alone had place in official acts and Roman courts. Where Greek was allowed in court pleadings, it was, so to speak, an act of grace on the judge’s part, and there can be little doubt that, e.g ., the speech of Tertullus in Acts 24:1-27 was in Latin. The Latin words used in a Greek form in the NT are mainly administrative, legal, or military (e.g. census, custodia, prÅ“torium, colonia, libertinus, centurio, legio ), or names of Roman coins ( denarius, quadrans ), but the total number of such Latin words occurring is only about 25. The Gentile names adopted by Jews were generally of Greek form (e.g. Philip ) a Latin form like the name of St. Paul was an exception (to be expected perhaps with one so proud of Roman citizenship). Throughout Palestine, while Latin was the language of the administration, Greek was the main language of commerce, and Aramaic the language of common intercourse among Jews. Hence we find all three languages used for the superscription on the cross ( Luke 23:38 ).

A. E. Hillard.

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Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Latin'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hdb/l/latin.html. 1909.

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