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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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De´dan. Two persons of this name are mentioned in Scripture; one the son of Cush (), and the other the second son of Jokshan, Abraham's son by Keturah (). Both were founders of tribes, afterwards repeatedly named in Scripture.

Of the descendants of the Cushite Dedan, very little is known. It is supposed that they settled in southern Arabia, near the Persian Gulf; but the existence in this quarter of a place called Dadan or Dadena, is the chief ground for this conclusion.

The descendants of the Abrahamite Jokshan seem to have lived in the neighborhood of Idumaea; for the prophet Jeremiah () calls on them to consult their safety, because the calamity of the sons of Esau, i.e. the Idumaeans, was at hand. The same prophet () connects them with Thema and Buz, two other tribes of Arabia Petraea, or Arabia Deserta, as does Ezekiel () with Theman, a district of Edom. It is not always clear when the name occurs which of the two Dedans is intended; but it is probably the Cushite tribe, which is described as addicted to commerce, or rather, perhaps, engaged in the carrying-trade. Its 'traveling companies,' or caravans, are mentioned by Isaiah (); in Ezekiel (), the Dedanites are described as supplying the markets of Tyre with flowing riding-cloths: and elsewhere () the same prophet names them along with the merchants of Tarshish.





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Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Dedan'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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