🔼The name Salmone: Summary
- In The Middle Of The Sea
- Set, Put, Protective Robe
- Place Of Peace, or Wholeness
- From sal, salt, and mesos, middle.
- From the noun שלמה (salma), mantle or robe.
- From the verb שלם (shalem), to be or make whole or complete.
🔼The name Salmone in the Bible
The name Salmone occurs a mere one time in the Bible, namely in Acts 27:7, where the narrator tells how Paul's Alexandrian ship from Myra and headed for Italy, passed off Cnidus (the south-western point of Asia Minor or mainland Anatolia, modern Turky), and crossed the 100 nautical miles or so south-west to Crete, where it came within the shadow of Cape Salmone, that juts north-east like a protective arm from Crete's eastern extremity.
🔼Etymology of the name Salmone
It is entirely unclear where the name Salmone comes from, or even whether Salmone was actually one of this cape's few acknowledged names (or rather some play on words by author Luke). The more common name of Cape Salmone was Cape Sideros, or alternatively Cape Samonium (or variations thereof). The name Sideros (Σιδερος, Sideros) can plausibly be connected to the word σιδηρος (sideros), meaning iron, which in turn relates to the Latin word sidus, meaning stellar constellation. Strangely, though, there is no iron on Crete. Just lots of bronze, and even a (mythological) bronze robot named Talos that ran like a guard around the island. Also on Crete was the legendary Minotaur, whose labyrinth was built by Daedalus, the man who gave wings to man (and his son Icarus) and sails to boats, which may actually have been the same thing (and ultimate rather describe governance: see the verb κυβερναω, kubernao, to steer of govern).
Speaking of governments, the perhaps too much celebrated philosopher Plato, imaged his version of the Perfect City as a tightly controlled commune and wrote a detailed manifesto on its slave-management, population control, the enforcement of leader-love (five years of reform camp for violators), and frequent mandatory choral singing and gymnastics. He called his city Magnesia (magnets attract iron) and imagined it somewhere on Crete (albeit inland, not close to the sea, so as to avoid contamination with foreign foolishness).
Also worthy of note is that the familiar Latin noun stella, star, closely relates to the Greek verb στελλω (stello), to put, set or place, from which comes the familiar noun αποστολος (apostolos), which describes someone (or a unified small group) "sent from" or "jutted out from", which is not unlike our cape.
Another Greco-Roman origin of our name may be the combination of the words sal, salt, and mesos, middle. This would make our name Salmone essentially a variant of the name Salamis, which means In The Middle Of The Sea, which is clearly not a stretch and would be a fitting name for such a prominent cape.
But perhaps Sideros was the Greco-Roman name for the cape, whereas the variants Samonium, Salmonium and Salmone were of Phoenician and thus Hebrew origin. That brings our name Salmone into proximity to the name Salmon and thus the noun שלמה (salma), meaning mantle or robe:
The unused verb שמל (samal) probably meant to enclose or envelop (it does so in related languages). Noun שמלה (simla) describes an outer mantle or robe. This noun, curiously, also occurs in the form שלמה (salma), which has the two inner letters reversed and rather obviously resembles the familiar root שלם (shalem), meaning wholeness or peacefulness.
The Greek equivalent of this noun שלמה (salma), robe, is στολη (stole), which indeed comes from the aforementioned verb στελλω (stello). This in turn suggests that this cape was named, in various language, after its signature sticking out and provision of protection.
Still, the noun שלמה (salma) is a transposed version of the original שמלה (simla), and the average passer-by would probably more likely be reminded of the more familiar similar word שלום (shalom), peace or wholeness:
The verb שלם (shalem) means to be or make whole or complete, and is also used to describe a righteous recompense or proper restitution (whether positive or not). The familiar noun שלום (shalom) means wholeness, completeness or peace.
Other derivatives are: noun שלם (shelem), peace offering; verb שלם (shalam), to be in a covenant of peace; adjective שלם (shalem), perfect, whole, complete, safe; noun שלם (shillem), recompense; nouns שלמן (shalmon), שלום (shillum), שלם (shillum) and שלמה (shilluma), reward or proper recompense.
The formal origin and etymology of the name Salmone are long lost, but depending on what language one spoke, the name Salmone could mean In The Middle Of The Sea to Greeks and Romans, and Protective Robe or Place Of Wholeness to Hebrew speakers.