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I am trying to get to the bottom of what the word מהול means in the context of being circumcised.

I can't find it used in Mishna or Talmud, but by the Rishonim and Medrashim it is commonly used to mean someone who was circumcised. I did not search gaonic works.

My question is twofold. If there is a dikduk reason, and this is simply a version of מילה, I'm curious what the rule is and why the word was seemingly never used by chazzal.

Possibly the word implies something else. Here are a couple of suggestions.

In Nach the word is found in Yeshaya 1 22 where Rashi comments:

מהול מעורב ואין לו דמיון במקרא ומ''א פותר לשחוק אמרתי מהולל ( קהלת ב' ב' ) מעורבב :

Which would work as far as the person with the mila is now mixed into society.

In maseches דמאי the phrase מחל ושותה is used which Bartenura in one explenation ties back to that verse in Yeshaya and says מיחל is the same as מיהל and it means מוזג. I guess that is similar enough to Rashi.

This is all just a suggestion. My question stands as what is the source and meaning to the usage of this word in this context.

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  • Isn't this exactly the same question as judaism.stackexchange.com/q/7621 (if better motivated)? cc @DoubleAA – msh210 Dec 5 '16 at 8:13
  • Until we have a definitive answer we won't know if it's a dupe. Especially if we take my suggestion into consideration, we would then have biblical lashon hakodesh source for mahul. Perhaps mohel was just an outgrowth of that. Also, the answer suggested pointing to yerushalmi stating mohel only compounds why mahul was never used. @msh210 – user6591 Dec 5 '16 at 12:21
  • I tend to agree with @msh210. I'll mention this in chat. – Double AA Dec 5 '16 at 14:29
  • i thought for a sec this was a melicha q I read it as מוהל then realized you were asking about מהול – sam Dec 5 '16 at 15:57

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