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Tryphaena and Tryphosa

TRYPHAENA and TRYPHOSA (trī fe’ nə, Τρύφαινα, G5586, dainty; trī fō’ sə, Gr. Τρυφω̂σα, G5589; delicate). Christian women in Rome to whom Paul sent greetings (Rom 16:12). He calls them “workers in the Lord,” a contrast to their names. Because their names are so closely derived from the same root meaning “to live luxuriously,” it is thought that they were twin sisters or very close relatives. Both names occur among slaves at the imperial court of Claudius and they have been found in a cemetery used chiefly for the emperor’s servants. They may be among “the saints of Caesar’s household” (Phil 4:22). “Tryphaena” is also the name of a queen who befriended Thecla in the apocryphal Acts of Paul and Thecla (27ff.).

Bibliography

J. B. Lightfoot, St. Paul’s Epistle to the Philippians (1913), 175, 176.