Acts 27:14
But not long after there arose against it a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon.
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(14) There arose against it . . .—The Greek pronoun is in the feminine, and as the noun used for ship is, throughout the narrative, in the neuter, the difference of gender presents a difficulty. Grammatically the pronoun seems to refer to Crete, and if referred to it, the sentence admits of three possible constructions: (1) the wind drove us against Crete; or (2), blew against Crete; or (3), drove down on us from Crete. Of these, (1) and (2) are at variance with the facts of the case, as the gale blew the ship away from Crete to the south, while (3), which is as tenable grammatically, exactly agrees with them. Some translators (e.g., Luther) have, however, referred the pronoun to the noun “purpose,”—“the wind blew against their purpose;” but this gives a less satisfactory sense. Of the English versions Wiclif gives “was against it,” leaving the sense ambiguous. Tyndale and Cranmer follow Luther, “there arose against their purpose.” The Geneva adopts the first of the above readings, “there arose against Candie,” and is followed by the Rhemish, “drove against it.”

A tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon.—The Greek adjective typhonic is perpetuated in the modern “typhoon,” as applied to whirlwinds like that now described. The “vortex” of such a wind is indeed its distinguishing feature. The name Euroclydon, which is fairly represented by such a word as “wide-wave,” or “broad-billow,” is not found elsewhere, and, if the reading be genuine, must be looked on as a term which St. Luke reported as actually used by the sailors on board. Some of the best MSS., however, give the form Euro-aquilo, which, though a somewhat hybrid word unknown to Greek and Latin writers, fits in, as meaning north-east, or, more strictly, east by north, with all the phenomena described. The earlier English—Wiclif, Tyndale, Cranmer, and the Geneva—all give “north-east,” while the Rhemish reproduces the term Euro-aquilo, without attempting to translate. A sudden change from south to north, with a great increase of violence, is a common phenomenon in the autumnal storms of the Mediterranean, and in this instance the blast would seem to have rushed down on the ship from the hills of Crete.

27:12-20 Those who launch forth on the ocean of this world, with a fair gale, know not what storms they may meet with; and therefore must not easily take it for granted that they have obtained their purpose. Let us never expect to be quite safe till we enter heaven. They saw neither sun nor stars for many days. Thus melancholy sometimes is the condition of the people of God as to their spiritual matters; they walk in darkness, and have no light. See what the wealth of this world is: though coveted as a blessing, the time may come when it will be a burden; not only too heavy to be carried safely, but heavy enough to sink him that has it. The children of this world can be prodigal of their goods for the saving their lives, yet are sparing of them in works of piety and charity, and in suffering for Christ. Any man will rather make shipwreck of his goods than of his life; but many rather make shipwreck of faith and a good conscience, than of their goods. The means the sailors used did not succeed; but when sinners give up all hope of saving themselves, they are prepared to understand God's word, and to trust in his mercy through Jesus Christ.Arose - Beat violently.

Against it - Against the vessel. Greek: seizing her, and whirling her around.

A tempestuous wind - Turbulent - violent - strong.

Called Euroclydon - Εὐροκλύδων Eurokludōn. Interpreters have been much perplexed about the meaning of this word, which occurs nowhere else in the New Testament. The most probable supposition is, that it denotes "a wind not blowing steadily from any quarter, but a hurricane, or wind veering about to different quarters." Such hurricanes are known to abound in the Mediterranean, and are now called Levanters, deriving their name from blowing chiefly in the Levant, or eastern part of the Mediterranean. The name euroclydon is derived probably from two Greek words, εῦρος euros, "wind," and κλύδων kludōn, "a wave"; so called from its agitating and exciting the waves. It thus answers to the usual effects of a hurricane, or of a wind rapidly changing its points of compass.

14, 15. a tempestuous—"typhonic"

wind—that is, like a typhon or tornado, causing a whirling of the clouds, owing to the meeting of opposite currents of air.

called Euroclydon—The true reading appears to be Euro-aquilo, or east-northeast, which answers all the effects here ascribed to it.

There arose against it; Crete or Candia; so that they were in the greater danger, having a sea-shore.

Called Euroclydon; this some will have to have been a whirlwind; but the word signifies only, the tempestuous east, or the north-east, which is a contrary wind unto any that would go from Crete to Italy. But not long after,.... They had not been long at sea, but

there arose against it; the ship, or the island of Crete, or both:

a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon; in the Greek text it is a "Typhonic" wind, so called, not from the name of a country from whence it blew; rather from Typho, the same with Python, an Heathen deity, who is said to be drowned in the lake Serbonis, or in the river Orontes; about which places this sort of wind is observed to be frequent, and which may take its name from him, being supposed to be raised by him. This wind may very well be thought to be the same which is called Typhon, and is by writers (s) represented as a very tempestuous one, as a sort of whirlwind or hurricane, a violent storm, though without thunder and lightning; and Pliny (t) calls it the chief plague of sailors, it breaking their sails, and even their vessels to pieces: and this may still have its name from Typho, since the Egyptians used to call everything that is pernicious and hurtful by this name; moreover, this wind is also called "Euroclydon". The Alexandrian copy reads, "Euracylon", and so the Vulgate Latin version seems to have read, rendering it "Euro-aquilo, the north east wind". The Ethiopic version renders it, the "north wind"; but according to Aristotle (u), and Pliny (w) the wind Typhon never blew in the northern parts; though some think that wind is not meant here, since the Typhon is a sudden storm of wind, and soon over; whereas this storm of wind was a settled and lasting one, it continued many days; and that it is only called Typhonic, because it bore some likeness to it, being very blustering and tempestuous: it seems by its name to be an easterly wind, which blew very violently, ploughed the sea, and lifted up its waves; hence the Arabic version renders it, "a mover" or "stirrer up of the waves"; which beat against the ship in a violent manner, and exposed it to great danger.

(s) Aristotel. Meteorolog. l. 3. c. 1. Apaleius de Mundo, p. 266. (t) Nat. Hist. l. 2. c. 48. (u) Ut supra. (Aristotel. Meteorolog. l. 3. c. 1.) (w) lb. c. 49.

But not long after there arose against {c} it a tempestuous wind, called {d} Euroclydon.

(c) By Crete, from whose shore our ship was driven by that means.

(d) Northeast wind.

Acts 27:14. Ἔβαλε] intransitive: fell upon, threw itself against it; often in the classical writers after Homer.

κατ ̓ αὐτῆς] refers to the nearest antecedent Κρὴτην, not (Luther) to προθέσ.

ἄνεμος τυφωνικός] The adjective is formed from τυφών, a whirlwind, and is found also in Eustathius. See Wetstein.

Εὐροκλύδων] the broad-surging, from εὖρος, breadth, and κλύδω. It is usually explained: Eurus fluctus excitans, from Εὖρος (the south-east wind) and κλύδων. But this compound would rather yield an appellation unsuitable for a wind: south-east wave, fluctus Euro excitatus. Εὐρυκλύδων,[171] from ΕὐΡΎς, according to the analogy of ΕὐΡΥΚΡΕΊΩΝ, ΕὐΡΥΜΈΔΩΝ, ΕὐΡΥΔΊΝΗς, etc., would certainly be more suitable to the explanation broad-surging; but on this very account the reading Εὐρυκλύδων in B** 40, 133, is not to be approved with Griesbach, but to be considered as a correction. Lachmann and Bornemann, followed by Ewald, Smith, and Hackett, have ΕὐΡΑΚΎΛΩΝ, according to A א (Vulg. Cassiod.: Euroaquilo), which also Olshausen, after Erasmus, Grotius, Mill, Bengel, and others, approves (the best defence of this reading is by Bentley, in Wolf, Cur.). This would be the east-north-east wind; the compound formed, as in εὐρόνοτος (Gel. ii. 22. 10), euroauster, euroafricus. But the words of the text lead us to expect a special actual name (ΚΑΛΟΎΜ.) of this particular whirlwind, not merely a designation of its direction. It is difficult also to comprehend why such an easily explicable name of a wind as Euroaquilo, ΕὐΡΑΚΎΛΩΝ, should have been converted into the difficult and enigmatic ΕὐΡΟΚΛΎΔΩΝ. Far more naturally would the converse take place, and the ΕὐΡΟΚΛΎΔΩΝ, not being understood, would be displaced by the similar ΕὐΡΑΚΎΛΩΝ formed according to the well-known analogy of ΕὐΡΌΝΟΤΟς Κ.Τ.Λ.; so that the latter form appears a product of old emendatory conjecture. Besides, ΕὐΡΑΚΎΛΩΝ, if it were not formed by a later hand from the original ΕὐΡΟΚΛΎΔΩΝ, would be an improbable mixture of Greek and Latin, and we do not see why the name should not have had some such form as ΕὐΡΟΒΟΡΈΑς; ἈΚΎΛΩΥ = aquilo, is nowhere found.

[171] Defended by Toup, Emend. in Suidam, III. p. 506. Comp. Etym. M. p. 772, 31: τυφὼν γάρ ἐστι ἡ τοῦ ἀνέμου σφόδρα πνοὴ, ; καὶ εὐρυκλύδων καλεῖται.Acts 27:14. μετʼ οὐ πολὺ δὲ, cf. Acts 20:12. οὐ μετρίως, Luke 15:15, Acts 1:5, “observe the ‘Litotes’ of οὐ with an adjective or adverb, four times in ‘We’ sections, twelve in rest of Acts, twice in Luke 7:6; Luke 15:13, rare in rest of N.T.,” Hawkins, p. 153.—ἔβαλε κατʼ αὐτῆς: intransitive, as often in classical Greek since Homer: “there beat down from it,” R.V., i.e., from Crete and its mountains over 7,000 feet in height; so also Blass, Holtzmann, Ramsay, Zöckler, Page, Rendall, Wendt, Weiss, Knabenbauer, and J. Smith, in later editions, see p. 100, 4th edition; a graphic description of a common experience in the Cretan waters; as the ship crossed the open bay between Cape Matala and Phœnice, the wind suddenly shifting to the north, a violent hurricane (strictly from east-north-east) burst upon them from Mount Ida, cf. St. Luke’s κατέβη, Luke 8:23, of a squall descending from the hills on the Lake of Gennesaret, and κατὰ τοῦ κρημνοῦ, Luke 8:33, cf. Matthew 8:32 (J. Smith, Weiss, Zöckler). Breusing, p. 164 (so Hackett, Lewin, Farrar), takes κατʼ αὐτῆς as = against the ship, but the word πλοῖον is used for ship, and not ναῦς until Acts 27:41. Luther regarded αὐτῆς as agreeing with προθέσεως (so Tyndale and Cranmer).—τυφωνικός: formed from τυφώς, turbo, denoting not the direction, but the vehemence of the wind (Breusing, Page), a heavy, eddying squall (J. Smith, Ramsay), vorticosus (Bentley).—Εὐροκλύδων, see critical note. If we read with [412] [413] [414]* Εὐρακύλων, render “which is called Euraquilo,” R.V. Perhaps the irregularly formed Euraquilo occasioned the corrections. V. Euroaquilo. Blass calls it vox hybrida from εὗρος and Aquilo (qui Latin = κῠ, ut Ἀκύλας, Acts 18:2), strictly the “East-north-east” wind (Breusing thinks “North-east” sufficient; so Wycliffe and Tyndale in their translations). Such a wind would drive the ship into the African Syrtis as the pilot feared, Acts 27:17, and the word is apposite to the context, to all the circumstances, and is so well attested as to fairly claim admission as the word of St. Luke. The Latin had no name for the Greek Καικίας blowing between Aquilo and Eurus, and it is quite possible that the Roman seamen, for want of a specific word, might express this wind by the compound Euro-Aquilo; cf. ὁ καλούμενος, which seems to point to some popular name given to the wind; for similar compounds cf. Εὐρόνοτος and Euro-Auster, and Gregalia, the name given to the same wind by the Levantines, as Euripus has become Egripou (Renan, Saint Paul, p. 551); see Bentley, Remarks on a late Discourse on Freethinking, p. 97, quoted at length by Breusing, “Euraquilo” Hastings’ B.D. and B.D., i.

[412] Codex Sinaiticus (sæc. iv.), now at St. Petersburg, published in facsimile type by its discoverer, Tischendorf, in 1862.

[413] Codex Alexandrinus (sæc. v.), at the British Museum, published in photographic facsimile by Sir E. M. Thompson (1879).

[414] Codex Vaticanus (sæc. iv.), published in photographic facsimile in 1889 under the care of the Abbate Cozza-Luzi.14. there arose against it] The word “it” must mean the last-mentioned subject, the island Crete. Thus the A. V. would state that the south wind, which already had begun to blow, became tempestuous, and dashed against the island. But if so, it must have carried the vessel with it. Whereas, what really happened was that they were driven southward to the island of Clauda. It is therefore better to take the preposition = down from, a sense which it often has in such a construction, than to give the verb the more literal meaning from the margin of A. V., and to construe (with R. V.) “there beat down from it, &c.” The wind suddenly changed from south to north, and coming over the land carried the vessel southward away from Crete. Such changes are not unusual in the Mediterranean (Smith’s Voyage of St Paul, p. 99).

a tempestuous wind] The adjective is one from which the word “typhoon” is derived.

called Euroclydon] (R. V. “which is called Euraquilo”). This reading of R. V. is supported by the oldest MSS., and has the Vulgate “Euroaquilo” in its favour, and it exactly describes the wind which would carry the vessel in the direction indicated. It is known in Greek by the name “Cœcias” and is a north-east wind. Some have thought that the reading of the A. V., which has the support of many MSS., arose from a corruption in the mouths of sailors. For the word “Euraquilo” is a hybrid, the first portion being Greek, the latter Latin. The form in the Text Rec. gives it a look of being all Greek, and the words “which is called” seem to intimate that the name was one known to the sailors, rather than a word of general use. Whereas “Euraquilo” would have needed no such introductory expression, but have been understood at once by its etymology.Acts 27:14. Ἔβαλς) viz. ἑαυτόν· so ἐπιδόντες, Acts 27:15; ἀποῤῥίψαντες. Acts 27:43. Intransitive.—αὐτῆς) The modern Greek Version has, τῆς Κρήτης κατʼ αὐτῆς, upon Crete and from Crete against us.—ἄνεμος Τυφωνικὸς, a Typhon-like [tempestuous] wind) Aristotle, de mundo, writes, Τυφών ἐστι τὸ ἀστράψαν ἄχρι τῆς γῆς διεκθέον, ἐὰν ἄπυρον ᾖ παντελῶς. It is called so from τύφω (to smoke), for θύφω, as τρέφω for θρέφω. Typhon, in Pliny, means the hurricane (ἐκνεφίας, the hurricane caused by clouds meeting and bursting) descending like a thunderbolt, the especial bane of sailors: l. ii. c. 48 and 49; and when, moreover, there is rather a stormy blast than a wind. On this account, it is therefore conjointly called ἄνεμος τυφωνικός.—Εὐροκλύδων) that is, the east wind (Eurus) exciting the billows. An appropriate compound; the Εὖρος forming one part of it, because of the ἄνεμος, and the κλύδων forming the other part, because of the Τυφωνικός. [“See App. Crit. P. ii. on this passage, which refutes, by more than one reason, the reading Εὐρακύλων, which many advocate.”—Not. Crit.]


[152] Others prefer εὐρυκλύδων, from the MS. Petav., as Ernesti suggests, Bibl. Th. T. viii. p. 24.—E. B.

Εὐρακύλων is read by AB (according to Lachm.: but B corrected, acc. to Tisch.) Vulg. (Euroaquilo) and Thcb. Εὐροκλύδων of the Rec. Text and Tisch. has the sanction of the two Syr. Versions alone among the oldest authorities. Bentley, in his Letter to F. H., D. D., signed Phileleutherus Lipsiensis, ably supports Εὐρακύλων. The wind Euroclydon was never heard of before. Εὖρος and κλύδων, presenting a disparity of ideas, would never be joined in one compound; but Εὐρακύλων exactly suits the sense. Eurus is often taken (Gellius ii. 22) for the middle equinoctial East, the same as Solanus. Between the two cardinal winds, Septentrio and Eurus, there are two at stated distances, Aquilo and καικίας. The Latins, having no name for καικίας (Seneca, Nat. Quæst. 16), expressed the wind blowing between Aquilo and Eurus by the compound Euro-Aquilo, on the analogy of the Greek Εὐρόνοτος, the middle wind between Eurus and Notus. The καικίας is well called by Luke τυφωνικὸς, whirling; for the proverb shows that this was the peculiar character of καικίας in those climates, Ἕλκων ἐφʼ αὐτὸν ὡς ὁ καικιας νέφη. So Luther’s and the Danish Version, North-east. More strictly it is the East-north-east, the very wind which would drive a ship from Crete to the African Syrtis, according to the pilot’s fears, ver. 17.—E. and T.Verse 14. - After no long time for not long after, A.V.; beat down from for arose against, A.V.; which is called Euraquilo for called Euroclydon, A.V. and T.B. There beat down from it (ἔβαλε κατ αὐτῆς). The meaning of this somewhat difficult phrase clearly is that given by Alford and Howson, and, on second thoughts, by Smith, viz. that a violent squall from the north-east beat down the heights and through the valleys of the island, becoming more violent when they had passed Cape Matala, and compelled them to alter their course, and run south-west before the wind towards the island of Clauda; ἔβαλεν in a neuter sense, "struck," or "beat," or "fell," as in Homer (see Liddell and Scott). Κατ αὐτῆς. Farrar thinks it "certain" that the right rendering is "against her," viz. the ship, because ἔβαλεν could not be used with nothing to follow it," 1.e. he thinks you must say ἔβαλεν κατὰ something. But as πλοῖον is the word used for the ship, not ναῦς, it seems very difficult to suppose that Luke could say αὐτῆς, and not αὐτοῦ. It is better, therefore, to refer ἀὐτῆς to Κρήτη, and either to understand it "down it," like κατ Οὐλύμποιο καρήνων, "down the heights of Olympus;" κατὰ πέτρης, "down the rock," etc., or simply "against it," as in the A.V., which obviates Dr. Farrar's objection. If taken in the sense of "down" there is the same idea of a squall "rushing down" from the hills into the lake, in Luke 8:23; and again in ver. 33 of the same chapter St. Luke tells us how the swine rushed κατὰ τοῦ κρημνοῦ, "down the steep," into the lake. A tempestuous wind; ἄνεμος τυφωνικός, only here, and not found in Greek writers; but the substantive τυφώς τυφῶνος, is common for a "furious storm" or "whirlwind." Euraquilo. Compounded - after the analogy of Euronotus, the south-east wind - of Eurus, the east wind, and Aquilo, the north wind, both Latin words (like Corns, in ver. 12), though Eurus is also Greek. This reading of the R.T. is supported by the Vulgate, and by "Lachmann, Bornemann, Ewald, J. Smith, Hackett, Bentley, Olshausen, after Erasmus, Grotius, Mill, Bengel, and others" (Meyer), and by Wordsworth, Alford, Lid-dell and Scott, Factor. On the other hand, Meyer, Tischendorf, Dean Howson, and others support the reading of the T.R. Αὐροκλύδων, and Lewis is doubtful. The derivation of Euroelydon would be from Αῦρος, and κλύδων, a wave. Whatever its name was, it must have been a north-easter. Psalm evil. 25 naturally arises to one's remembrance, with its fine description of a storm at sea. There arose against it (ἔβαλε κατ' αὐτῆς)

Against what? Some say, the island of Crete; in which case they would have been driven against the island, whereas we are told that they were driven away from it. Others, the ship. It is objected that the pronoun αὐτῆς it, is feminine, while the feminine noun for ship (ναῦς) is not commonly used by Luke, but rather the neuter, πλοῖον. I do not think this objection entitled to much weight. Luke is the only New Testament writer who uses ναῦς (see Acts 27:41), though he uses it but once; and, as Hackett remarks, "it would be quite accidental which of the terms would shape the pronoun at this moment, as they were both so familiar." A third explanation refers the pronoun to the island of Crete, and renders, "there beat down from it." This is grammatical, and according to a well-known usage of the preposition. The verb βάλλω is also used intransitively in the sense of to fall; thus Homer Iliad," xi., 722), of a river falling into the sea. Compare Mark 4:37 : "the the waves beat (ἐπέβαλλεν) into the ship ;" and Luke 15:12 the portion of goods that falleth (ἐπιβάλλον) to me." The rendering of the Rev. is, therefore, well supported, and, on the whole, preferable' there beat down from it. It is also according to the analogy of the expression in Luke 8:23, there came down a storm. See note there, and see on Matthew 8:24.

A tempestuous wind (ἄνεμος τυφωνικὸς)

Lit., a typhonic wind. The word τυφῶν means a typhoon, and the adjective formed from it means of the character of a typhoon.

Euroclydon (Εὐροκλύδων)

The best texts read Εὐρακύλων, Euraquilo: i.e., between Eurus, "the E. S. E. wind," and Aquilo, "the north-wind, or, strictly, N. 1/3 E." Hence, E. N. E.

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