PRISCILLA, PRISCA (prĭ-sĭl'a, prĭs'ka, Gr. Priskilla, Priska). Priscilla (diminutive of Prisca, Rom 16:3, see niv footnote) was the wife of the Jewish Christian, Aquila, with whom she is always mentioned in the NT. They were tentmakers who seem to have migrated about the Mediterranean world, teaching the gospel wherever they went. Paul met them in Corinth (Acts.18.2); they instructed Apollos in Ephesus (Acts.18.24-Acts.18.26); Paul sent them greetings in Rome (Rom.16.3); and in 1Cor.16.19 Paul spoke of their being in Ephesus again, where they had a church in their house. In Rom.16.3-Rom.16.4 Paul lauded not only their service but also their courage (“they risked their lives for me”), and plainly stated that all the churches owed them a debt of gratitude. From all the scriptural references one may easily see that Priscilla was a well-known and effective worker in the early church.——ER

priscilla. The wife of Aquila the tentmaker (Acts 18:2). The best readings of the Pauline references give the form “Prisca”; Luke in Acts 18:2,18,26 uses the diminutive variant “Priscilla.” Both writers give particular prominence to the wife, and this has been thought to show that she was of higher social standing or of greater importance in the church than her husband. Paul's association with the couple began in Corinth when they had come from Italy after Claudius's expulsion of Jews from Rome in a.d. 49. They were later his fellow-workers in Ephesus, where they instructed Apollos, and in Rome. Harnack* ingeniously urged the attribution to them of the epistle to the Hebrews. The name Priscilla is well attested, chiefly later and in Asia Minor, where its frequency may be due to the influence of Montanism.*

See also

  • Aquila