Acts 27 #2 — Did Paul dock at Cnidus (Knidos)? — Photo Illustration

Paul’s voyage to Rome, as it is often called, was actually a trip as a prisoner on a variety of ships from Caesarea Maritima to Puteoli in Italy (Acts 27:1 – 28:13. The trip westward from Myra, on the Mediterranean coast, took the ship near Cnidus (also spelled Knidos) (Acts 27:6-7).

We sailed slowly for many days and arrived with difficulty off Cnidus. Because the wind prevented us from going any farther, we sailed under the lee of Crete off Salmone. (Acts 27:7 NET)

Mark Wilson says,

Paul would have passed within sight of Cnidus on his return to Jerusalem during his second and third journeys, possibly even stopping at the city (Acts 18:21-22; 21:1). The grain ship upon which Paul was traveling on his captivity voyage to Rome encountered fierce head winds as it tacked westward along the coast of Asia Minor. It is not clear if Paul’s ship was able to make port in Cnidus’ commercial harbor, but the sailing conditions probably prevented it (Acts 27:7). — Biblical Turkey, 192.

A British archaeologist excavated at Cnidus in 1957-59. A colossal marble lion that once rested on a monumental tomb was taken to the British Museum where it is displayed in the Queen Elizabeth II Great Court. The lion dates to the late 4th-early 3rd century B.C.

Colossal marble lion from Cnidus. British Museum. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Colossal marble lion from Cnidus. British Museum. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

The sign in the British Museum informs us that,

This lion crowned a monumental tomb at the edge of a cliff overlooking the sea. The hollow eyes were probably inset with glass to catch the light.

Did Paul see this lion? More than likely, I think, during the return from the second and third journeys.

The map below shows the location of Cos, Cnidus, Rhodes and Patara. Click the image for a higher resolution.

Map showing Cnidus, Rhodes, and Patara. Made with Bible Mapper 4.

Map showing Cnidus, Rhodes, and Patara. Made with Bible Mapper 4.

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