ISHMAEL BEN ḲIMḤIT (ḲAMḤIT ):
High priest under Agrippa I.; probably identical with Simon, son of Κάμιθος (or Κάμη), mentioned by Josephus ("Ant." xx. 1, §§ 3 et seq.). He is known as having had a hand so large that it could contain four cabs of flour (Yoma 47a). Once, while talking with an Arab (or with the Arabian king), the latter's saliva fell on Ishmael's garment and made him unclean, so that his brother officiated in his stead (ib.; Tosef., Yoma, iv. [iii.] 20). In Yer. Yoma i. 1, Lev. R. xx. 7, and Tan., Aḥare Mot, 9, this story is related of Simeon ben Ḳimḥit. According to the Talmudic sources mentioned above, "Ḳimḥit" was the name of the mother of Ishmael, or Simeon; she had seven sons, all of whom became high priests.
- Derenbourg, Hist. p. 197, Paris, 1867;
- Grätz, Gesch. 4th ed., iii., note 19 (pp. 738-739);
- idem, in Monatsschrift, xxx. 53 et seq.