No-Amon The manner in which this ancient city is mentioned in the several passages of the Bible is deserving of the notice of the student of Scripture geography. The first passage in which it occurs is Jer 46:25, "I will punish the multitude of No;" מַנּאֹ אֶלאּאָמוֹן, el Amon min-N', literally "to the Amon from No" (Sept. τὸν Α᾿μμων τὸν υἱὸν αὐτῆς; Vulg. super tumultum Alexandrice), where the reference seems to be rather to the Egyptian deity Amon, who was worshipped at No, than to the people of that city (which would make אָמוֹן = הָמוֹן, "multitude"). The next passage is Eze 30:14-16, "I will execute judgments in No" (בּנא, be- Ndo; ἐν Διοσπόλει; in Alexandria); "I will cut off the multitude of No" (אֶתאּחֲמוֹן נא, eth hamon Nd; τὸ πλῆθος Μἐμφεως; multitudinem A lexandrice); "No shall be rent asunder" (נא, Nd; ἐν Διοσπόλει; Alexandria). The different rendering in the Sept. here is remarkable. Memphis was identical with the Noph of the Bible. The Hebrew word rendered "multitude" in ver. 15 is different from that in Jeremiah; perhaps it may be a corruption of Amon. Diospolis was the Greek equivalent of No,- Ammon, and identical with Thebes. The last passage is Na 3:8, and is very important, not merely as giving the full name of the city, but also describing its position. It is thus rendered in the A. V., "Art thou better than populous No, that was situate among the rivers, that had waters round about it, whose rampart was the sea, and her wall was from the sea?" "Populous No" is in Hebrew נאֹ אָמוֹן, No-Amon (Sept. μερίδα Α᾿μμών; Vulg. Alexandria populorum), that is, "No of Amon," in which Amon was the supreme deity, and of which he was protector. SEE AMON.
Critics are not agreed as to the meaning of the word No; but it would seem from this passage that the translators of the Sept., who were themselves resident in Egypt, regarded it as equivalent to the Egyptian noz, that is, σχοῖνος, "a measuringline," and then-= μερίς, "a part or portion" (see Gesen. Thes. p. 835). The second part of the first form is 'the name of amen, the chief divinity of Thebes, mentioned or alluded to in connection with this place in the passage of Jeremiah, and perhaps also alluded to in that of Ezekiel. The second part of the Egyptian sacred name of the city, ha-amen, "the abode of Amen," is the same. But how are we to explain the use of No alone? It thus occurs not only in Hebrew, but also in the language of the Assyrian inscriptions, in which it is written Nia, according to Sir Henry Rawlinson (" Illustrations of Egyptian History and Chronology," etc., Trans. Roy. Soc. Lit. [2d ser.] 7:166). Sir Henry Rawlinson identifies Ni'a with NoAmon. The whole paper (p. 137 sq.) is of great importance, as illustrating the reference in Nahum to the capture of Thebes, by showing that Egypt was conquered by both Esarhaddon and Asshur-bani-pal, and that the latter twice took Thebes. If these wars were after the prophet's time, the narrative of them makes it more *proballe than it before seemed that there was a still earlier conquest of Egypt by the Assyrians. The conjectures that Thebes was called pein-amoun, "the abode of Amen," or still nearer the Hebrew, naamnoun, "the [city] of Amen," like naesi, "the [city] of His," or as Gesenius prefers, ma-amoun, "the place of Amen" (Thesaurus, s.v.), are all liable to two serious objections, that they neither represent the Egyptian name nor afford an explanation of the use of No alone. It seems most reasonable to suppose that No is a Shemitic name, and that Amon is added in Nahum (1. c.) to distinguish Thebes from some other place bearing the same name, or on account of the connection of Amen with.:that city. Thebes also bears in ancient Egyptian the common name, of doubtful signification, ap-t or t-ap, which the Greeks represented by Thebee. The whole metropolis, on both banks of the river, was called Tam (see Brugsch, Geogr. Inschr. 1:175 sq.). SEE NO.
Various opinions have been entertained as to the site of this city. That it was in Egypt all admit. The Sept. identifies it with Diospolis; but there were two places of this name-one in Lower Egypt, near the sea, and encompassed by the marshes of the Delta (Strabo, xviii, p. 802); and with this Champollion and others identify No (l'AEgypte, 2:131); and Gesenius (1. c.) well observes that it would not then be compared in Nahum to Nineveh. The other was Thebes, in Upper Egypt, which is probably the place really referred to in the Sept. For No, Jerome in the Vulg. reads Alexandria (as also the Chaldee, the Rabbins, and Drusius); but, the town of Alexandria was not in existence in the time of Jeremiah; and yet it appears from the words of Nahum (l.c.) that No had been already destroyed in his day (see Bochart, Opera, 1:6). This and the evidence of the Assyrian record leave no doubt that it is Thebes. The description of No-Amon, as "situate among the rivers, the waters round about it" (Nahum 1.c.), remarkably characterizes Thebes, the only town of ancient Egypt which we know to have been built on both sides of the Nile; and the prophecy that it should "be rent asunder" (Eze 30:16) cannot fail to appear remarkably significant to the observer who stands amid the vast ruins of its chief edifice, the great temple of Amen, which is rent and shattered as if by an earthquake, although it must be held to refer primarily, at least, rather to the breaking up or capture of the city (comp. — 2Ki 25:4; Jer 52:7), than to its destruction. SEE THEBES.