gur'-ga-shit (girgashi; Gergesaios; also punctuated (?) Girgasite (Genesis 10:16 the King James Version)):
A son of (the land of) Canaan (Genesis 10:16), and accordingly enumerated along with the Canaanite' in the list of tribes or nationalities inhabiting that country (Genesis 15:21; Deuteronomy 7:1; Joshua 3:10; 24:11; Nehemiah 9:8). It has been supposed that the name survived in that of "the Gergesenes," the King James Version (the Revised Version (British and American) "the Gadarenes"), of Matthew 8:28, on the East side of the Sea of Galilee; Josephus (Ant., I, vi, 2), however, states that nothing was known about it. The inscriptions of the Egyptian king, Ramses II, mention the Qarqish who sent help to the Hittites in their war with Egypt; but Qarqish was more probably in Asia Minor than in Syria. Pinches (The Old Testament in the Light of the Historical Records, 324) would identify the Girgashites with the Kirkishati of an Assyrian tablet; the latter people, however, seem to have lived to the East of the Tigris, and it may be that, as in the case of the Hittites, a colony of the Qarqish, from Asia Minor, was established in Palestine.
A. H. Sayce
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