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Wouldn’t Joseph Smith have thought it odd to include Greek names in the Book of Mormon such as Timothy?

On the surface, the Greek names Timothy and Lachoneus may seem out of place in the Book of Mormon. However as Hugh Nibley has pointed out:

[R]emember…that in Lehi’s day Palestine was swarming with Greeks, important Greeks. Remember, it was Egyptian territory [prior to being seized by Babylon] at that time and Egyptian culture. The Egyptian army, Necho’s army, was almost entirely Greek mercenaries. We have inscriptions from that very time up the Nile at Aswan-inscriptions from the mercenaries of the Egyptian army, and they’re all in Greek. So Greek was very common, and especially the name Timotheus.

Hugh W. Nibley, “Lecture 27: Omni; Words of Mormon; Mosiah 1: The End of the Small Plates and The Coronation of Mosiah,” in Teachings of the Book of Mormon: Transcripts of lectures presented to an Honors Book of Mormon Class at Brigham Young University 1988-1990, Vol. 1, (Provo, Utah: Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, 1993), 430. ISBN 1591565715.

How would Joseph know that Greek names would be appropriate in the Book of Mormon? Why would he include them if he was trying to convince everyone his fraudulent book was genuine?

It could be argued that Joseph was simply ignorant as to the origin of names, but how is that consistent with the knowledge he would have required to create wordplays and Hebraisms?


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