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Bible Encyclopedias
Amon

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

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(Heb., Amon', אָמוֹן , builder [the deriv. of No. 3 is prob. different]), the name of three men and a deity.

1. (Sept. Ἀμμών , and Ε᾿μήρ v. r. Σεμήρ .) The governor of the city of Samaria in the time of Ahab, to whose custody the prophet Micaiah was delivered (1 Kings 22:26; 2 Chronicles 18:25), B.C. 895.

2. (Sept. Ἀμών v. r. Ἀμώς .) The son of Manasseh (by Meshullemeth the daughter of Haruz of Jotbah), and fifteenth separate king of Judah, B.C. 642-640. He appears to have derived little benefit from the instructive example which the sin, punishment, and repentance of his father offered; for he restored idolatry, and again set up the images which Manasseh had cast down. To Amon's reign we must refer the terrible picture which the prophet Zephaniah gives of the moral and religious state of Jerusalem; idolatry supported by priests and prophets (1, 4; 3, 4), the poor ruthlessly oppressed (3, 3), and shameless indifference to evil (3, 11). He was assassinated in a courit conspiracy; but the people put the regicides to death, and raised to the throne his son Josiah, then but eight years old (2 Kings 21:18-26; 2 Chronicles 33:20-25). He is mentioned among the ancestors of Christ (Ἀμών, Matthew 1:10; comp. 1 Chronicles 3:14; Jeremiah 1:2; Jeremiah 25:3; Zephaniah 1:1). (See JUDAH, KINGDOM OF).

3. (Sept. Ἀμμών .) AMMON (See AMMON) , an Egyptian and Libyan god, in whom the classical writers unanimously recognize their own Zeus and Jupiter (Ἀμοῦν, Herod. 2, 42; ῎Αμμων , Diod. Sic. 1, 13). The primitive seat of his worship appears to have been at Meroe, from which it descended to Thebes, and thence, according to Herodotus (2, 54), was transmitted to the oasis of Siwah and to Dodona; in all which places there were celebrated oracles of this god (Plut. Isid. c. 9; Alex. c. 72; Arnotius, 6, 12; Justin, 11, 11; Strabo, 1, 49 sq.; 17, 814). His chief temple and oraclein Egypt, however, were at Thebes, a city peculiarly conseerated to him, and which is probably meant by the No and No-Amon of the prophets, the Diospolis of the Greeks. He is generally represented on, Egyptian monuments by the seated figure of a man with a ram's head, or by that of an entire ram, and of a blue color (Wilkinson, 2 ser. 1, 243 sq.). In honor of him, the inhabitants of the Thebaid abstained from the flesh of sheep, but they annually sacrificed a ram to him and dressed his image in the hide. A religious reason for that ceremony is assigned by Herodotus (2, 42); but Diodorus (3, 72) ascribes his wearing horns to a more trivial cause, There appears to be no account of the manner in which his oracular responses were given; but as a sculpture at Karnak, which Creuzer (Symbol. 1, 507) has copied from the Description de l'Egypte, represents his portable tabernacle mounted on a boat and borne on the shoulders of forty priests, it may be conjectured, from the resemblance between several features of that representation, and the description of the oracle of Jupiter Ammon in Diodorus, 17:50, that his responses were communicated by some indication during the solemn transportation of his tabernacle. (See Smith's Dict. of Class. Biog. s.v. Ammon.) That the name of this god really occurs in the passage "Behold, I will punish the multitude (literally, Amon) of No" (Jeremiah 46:25), is a view favored by the context and all internal grounds; but in the parallel passage; Ezekiel 30:15, the equivalent hamon, הָמוֹן, is employed. Comp. also Ezekiel 30:4; Ezekiel 30:10, for the use of the latter word with reference to Egypt. These cases, or at least the former two, seem therefore to be instances of paronomasia (comp. Isaiah 30:7; Isaiah 65:11-12). It is also undoubtedly referred to in the name NO-AMMON, (See NO), given to Thebes (Nahum 3:8, where the English text translates "populous No"). The etymology of the name is obscure. Eustathius (ad Dionys. Perieg. p. 125, ed. Bernhardy) says that, according to some, the word means shepherd. Jablonski (Panth. AEgypt. 1, 181) proposed an etymology by which it would signify producing light; and Champollion originally regarded it as meaning glory (Egypte sous les Pharaons, 1, 247), but, in his latest interpretation (after Manetho in Plut.), assigned it the sense of hidden. The name accompanying the above figure on the monuments is written Amn, more fully Amn-Re, i.e. "Amon-Sun" (Gesenius, Thes. Heb. p. 115). Macrobius asserts (Saturnal. 1, 21) that the Libyans adored the sun under the form of Ammon; and he points to the ram's horns as evidence of a connection with the zodiacal sign Aries (Muller, Archaol. p. 276; Pauly, Real-Encycl. 1, 407 sq.); but this has been disputed (Jomard, Descr. de l'Egypte; Bahr, Synbolik d. Mos. Cultus, 2, 296, 641), although it would seem unsuccessfully (Creuzer, Symbolik, 2, 205; Schmidt, De Zodiaci origine AEq. p. 33, in his Opusc. quibus res AEg. illustrantur, Carolsr. 1765). (See EGYPT); (See HIEROGLYPHICS).

4. (Sept. ᾿Ημειμ v. r. ᾿Ημίμ .) The head or ancestor of one of the families of the "Solomon's servants" that returned from Babylon (Nehemiah 7:59); called AMI in Ezra 2:57. B.C. ante 536.

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Amon'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​a/amon.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.
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