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Hebrew: כַּפְתֹּר —transliteration: Kaphtor —meaning: Caphtor

This is the name of the original capital of the Philistines (Deuteronomy 2:23; Jeremiah 47:4; Amos 9:7).

“Are you not like the people of Ethiopia to Me,
O children of Israel?” says the Lord.
“Did I not bring up Israel from the land of Egypt,
The Philistines from Caphtor,
And the Syrians from Kir? —Amos 9:7 NKJV

The people this city are referred to as Caphtorim.

“And the Avvim, who lived in villages as far as Gaza, the Caphtorim who came from Caphtor, destroyed them and lived in their place.” Deuteronomy 2:23 NASB

The name Caphtor is found written in hieroglyphics in the temple of Kom Ombos in Upper Egypt. But the exact location of Caphtor is unknown, though it is supposed to be Crete, since the Philistines seem to be meant by the “Cherethites” in 1 Samuel 30:14 (see also 2 Samuel 8:18).

It may, however, have been a part of Egypt, the Caphtur in the north Delta, since the Caphtorim were apparently of the same race as the Mizraite people (Egyptians) (Genesis 10:14; 1 Chronicles 1:12).

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Article Version: April 12, 2024