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Meaning and etymology of the name Asshur

Asshur Asshur

Asshur is the Biblical name for Assyria, peopled by the Assyrians, who were the descendants of Asshur, a son of Shem, son of Noah (Genesis 10:22). These people are distinct from the Asshurim, who descended from Abraham and Keturah (Genesis 25:3). There's one more person named Asshur, who is mentioned in the genealogy of Judah (1 Chronicles 2:24).

The name Asshur is highly similar to the Hebrew name Asher (Asher) but is spelled with a waw before the resh. However, BDB Theological Dictionary reports a connection with the Hebrew verb yashar (yashar), be level, straight up, just. NOBS Study Bible Name List seems to agree and reads Level Plain. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names derives the name Asshur from the verb asher (asher), meaning to go straight on, and which also yields the name Asher. Jones renders the name Asshur A Step.

If indeed the name Asshur is related to the word yashar then it is also related to Israel's poetic nickname Jeshurun, as well as to the names Jashar, Jesharelah, Jesher and Sharon.



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