vil'-aj (qaphar, chawwoth, qatserim, banoth, perazoth; kome):
(1) The general term for a village, in common with Aramaic and Arabic is qaphar (Song of Solomon 7:11; 1 Chronicles 27:25; kopher; 1 Samuel 6:18; kephir, Nehemiah 6:2). This designation is derived from the idea of its offering "cover" or shelter. It is used in combination, and place-names of this formation became prominent in post-Biblical times, probably because the villages so named had then grown into towns. A well-known Biblical instance of such names is Capernaum.
(2) Chawwoth (always "town" in English Versions of the Bible; see HAVVOTH-JAIR) means originally a group of tents (Arabic chiwa'). These in settled life soon became more permanent dwellings, or what we understand by a village. The term, however, is applied only to the villages of Jair in the tribe of Manasseh (Numbers 32:41; 1 Kings 4:13).
(3) Chatserim likewise came from nomadic life. They were originally enclosures specially for cattle, alongside of which dwellings for the herdsmen and peasantry naturally grew up (see HAZAR-ADDAR; HAZOR). They were unwalled (Leviticus 25:31) and lay around the cities (Joshua 19:8).
(4) Banoth is literally "daughters." The word is applied to the dependent villages lying around the larger cities, and to which they looked as to a kind of metropolis (Numbers 21:25, etc.); the Revised Version (British and American) "towns" except in Numbers 32:42.
(5) Perazoth means "the open country," but it soon came to mean the villages scattered in the open (Ezekiel 38:11; Zechariah 2:4; Esther 9:19). Some have sought to connect the Perizzites with this word and to regard them, not as a distinct people, but as the peasant class. Attempts have also been m
ade to connect perazon in Judges 5:7,11 with the same root, and the King James Version rendered it "inhabitants of the villages." the Revised Version (British and American), on the contrary, gives it the meaning of "rulers." The versions indicate a word meaning authority, and probably the text should be emended to read rozenim, "rulers." A similar emendation is required in Habakkuk 3:14. "Village" in the Revised Version (British and American) of the New Testament invariably represents the Greek kome, but in 2 Macc 8:6 the Revised Version (British and American) Apocrypha has "village" for chora, lit. "country."
See CITY; TOWN.
W. M. Christie