🔼The name Hammath in the Bible
There are two Hammaths mentioned in the Bible, one person and one city:
- Hammath the city is situated in the territory of Naphtali, near the sea of Tiberias (Joshua 19:35). It may (or may not) be that this town is the same as Hammoth-dor mentioned in Joshua 21:32.
- Hammath the person is a Kenite and the ancestor of the house of Rechab. He is mentioned in the genealogy of Judah (1 Chronicles 2:55) but it's not clear whether Hammath's Kenite descendants were simply living in Judah's territory (namely in Jabez and other cities; 1 Samuel 31:29) or that they were properly proselytized and formally adopted by Judah. At least the Rechabites said to Jeremiah that they had dwelt in but separately of Judah until the invasion of Nebuchadnezzar forced them into Jerusalem (Jeremiah 35:10).
🔼Etymology of the name Hammath
All sources derive the name Hammath from the root חמם (hamam), meaning to be warm. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names assumes that the town Hammath contained hot springs, hence the name:
For a meaning of the name Hammath, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Hot Springs. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Warm Baths.