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Chemosh meaning

כמוש
כמיש

Source: http://www.abarim-publications.com/Meaning/Chemosh.html

🔼The name Chemosh in the Bible

The name Chemosh belongs to the national deity of Moab (Numbers 21:29), which, according to the judge Jephthah, was also worshipped by the Ammonites (Judges 11:24).

This "abomination of Moab" was introduced to Israel by none other than king Solomon, who graced the creature with a high place on a mountain close to Jerusalem, and adjacent one dedicated to Moloch of Ammon (1 Kings 11:7). When YHWH assigned Jeroboam the northern portion of the kingdom, He had the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite tell him that Solomon had forfeited it also because of his flirting with Chemosh (1 Kings 11:33).

It wasn't until the reforms of king Josiah that these and other pagan shrines that Solomon built were removed from Judah (2 Kings 23:13). In Moab, however, Chemosh was going strong until the Babylonian invasion, when the Moabites too were deported, as foretold by the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 48:7, 48:13 and 48:46; only in 48:7 is this name spelled כמיש).

🔼Etymology of the name Chemosh

It's a mystery where the name Chemosh comes from. It's obviously Semitic but in Hebrew there is no triliteral root כמש (kms), as far as we know. According to recovered Moabite texts, the father of king Mesha (מישע) of Moab was called Chemoshmelek (כמשמלך, an extra-biblical name comparable in form to Biblical names like Elimelech and Abimelech), which seems to suggest that Chemosh (כמוש) may be Che-mesha, formed from the prefix כ (ke):

And the verb ישע (yasha') meaning to save:

It's highly likely that the Hebrew authors who wrote down this name knew very well what it was supposed to mean in Moabite, but as they copied it from Moabite into Hebrew, it came to mean something else (something similar would occur with, say, the German word schlimm, meaning bad or terrible, which transliterated into Dutch would be slim, meaning clever or smart, which in English means slender or thin). As is, the name Chemosh in Hebrew looks like it consists of כ (ke) plus an expression of one of the roots מוש (mush):

🔼Chemosh meaning

It's ultimately unknown what the name Chemosh meant to the Moabites, but to the Hebrew authors it may originally have sounded like As If He Saves, but made to sound like it meant As If He Feels or As If He Removes.