el'-kosh-it (ha-'elqoshi; Septuagint Elkesaiou, Elkaiseou, Elkeseou):

Used with the article "the Elkoshite" (Nahum 1:1). Probably a gentilic adjective giving the home of the prophet; not definitely identified. Three traditions may be noted:

(1) The Nestorians venerate the supposed tomb of the prophet in the village of Alqush not far from the east bank of the Tigris, about two days' journey almost directly north of Mosul.

(2) Jerome states in the prologue to his commentary on Na that the village of Helkesei in Galilee was pointed out to him as Elkosh. This Helkesei is probably El-Kauzeh between Ramieh and Bint Jebeil.

(3) The treatise De Vitis Prophetarum of the Pseudo-Epiphanius says that Nahum came from "Elkesei beyond Jordan towards Begabor and was of the tribe of Simeon." Nestle has shown that the words "beyond Jordan" are probably a gloss, and that for Begabor should be read Betogabra, the modern Beit Jibrin in Southern Palestine. In favor of this identification may be urged the following facts:

(a) that parallels to the name Elkosh, such as Eltekeh and Eltekon, are found in the southern country;

(b) that the word probably contains the name of the Edomite god Qaush, whose name appears in the names of Edomite kings in the Assyrian inscriptions of the 8th and 7th centuries BC, such as Qaush-malaka and the like.

(c) that the internal evidence of the prophecy makes the Judean origin of the prophet almost certain.

\LITERATURE.\ Davidson, "Nah," "Hab," "Zeph," in Cambridge Bible, 9-13; G. A. Smith, "Book of the Twelve," in Expositor's Bible, Commentary on Nah; Billerbeck and Jeremias, Beitraege zur Assyriologie, III, 91; Peiser, ZATW, 1897, 349; Nestle, PEFS, 1879, 136.

Walter R. Betteridge

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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'ELKOSHITE'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.