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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(Heb., Anah', עֲנָה , speech or affliction; Sept. Ἀνά ), the name of one or two Horites.

1. The fourth mentioned of the sons of Seir, and head of an Idumaean tribe preceding the arrival of Esau (Genesis 36:20; Genesis 36:29; 1 Chronicles 1:38), B.C. much ante 1964. It seems most natural to suppose him to be also the one referred to in Genesis 36:25, as otherwise his children are not at all enumerated, as are those of all his brothers (Hengstenberg, Genuineness of the Pentateuch, 2, 229), although from Genesis 36:2 some have inferred that another person of the same name is there meant. (See DISHON); (See AHOLIBAMAH).

2. The second named of the two sons of Zibeon the Hivite, and father of Esau's wife Aholibamah (Genesis 36:18; Genesis 36:24). B.C. ante 1964. While feeding asses in the desert he discovered "warm springs" (aquca calide), as the original, יְמַים, yemim', is rendered by Jerome, who states that the word had still this signification in the Punic language. Gesenius and most modern critics think this interpretation correct, supported as it is by the fact that warm springs are still found in the region east of the Dead Sea. The Syriac has simply "waters," which Dr. Lee seems to prefer. Most of the Greek translators retain the original as a proper name, Ι᾿αμείμ , probably not venturing to translate. The Samaritan text, followed by the Targums, has "Emims," giants. Our version of "mules" is now generally abandoned, but is supported by the Arabic and Veneto-Greek versions. (See MULE).

In Genesis 36:2; Genesis 36:14, of the above chap. Anah is called the daughter of Zibeon, evidently by an error of transcription, as the Samaritan and Sept. have son; or (with Winer, Hengstenberg, Tuch, Knobel, and many others) we may here understand it to mean grand-daughter, still referring to Aholibamah (Turner's Compan. to Genesis p. 331). (See ZIBEON). He had but one son, Dishon (Genesis 36:25; 1 Chronicles 1:40-41), who appears to be named because of his affinity with Esau (q.v.) through his sister's marriage. We may further conclude, with Hengstenberg (Pent. 2, 280; Engl. transl. 2, 229), that the Anah mentioned among the sons of Seir in 5,20 in connection with Zibeon is the same person as is here referred to, and is therefore the grandson of Seir. The intention of the genealogy plainly is not so much to give the lineal descent of the Seirites as to enumerate those descendants who, being heads of tribes, came into connection with the Edomites. It would thus appear that Anah, from whom Esau's wife sprang, was the head of a tribe independent of his father, and ranking on an equality with that tribe. Several difficulties occur in regard to the race and name of Anah. By his descent from Seir he is a Horite (Genesis 36:20), while in Genesis 36:2 he is called a Hivite, and again in the narrative (Genesis 26:34) he is called Beeri the Hittite. Hengstenberg's explanation of the first of these difficulties, by supposing that one of the descendants of Seir received the specific epithet Hori (i.e. Troglodyte, or dweller in a cave) as a definite proper name (Pent. 2, 228), is hardly adequate, for others of the same family are similarly named; it is more probable that the word Hivite (הִחַוּי ) is a mistake of transcribers for Horite (הִחֹרַי ), or rather that all the branches of the Hivites were, in course of time, more particularly called Horites, from their style of habitation in the caves of Matthew Seir. See: HORITE. As the name Beeri signifiesfontanus, i.e. "man of the fountain" (בְּאֵר ), this has been thought. to be his designation with reference to the above noticed "warm springs" of Callirrhoe discovered 1ly him; whereas in the genealogy proper he is fitly called by his original name Anah. (See BEER).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Anah'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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