& Meaning •
Meaning and etymology of the name Hammoleketh
There's only one Hammoleketh in the Bible and she's the mother of Ishhod, Abiezer and Mahlah. (1 Chronicles 7:18). The Hebrew of 1 Chronicles 7:18 is a bit confusing and some scholars believe Hammoleketh is the sister of Bedan. The majority, however, believes she is the sister of Gilead, the grandson of Manasseh.
One of this noun's many derivatives (or a derivative from a lost, common root) is the feminine noun (meleket), meaning queen and which is generally understood to denote some pagan "queen of heaven." HAW Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament suggests this word may even be a god's personal name (related to divine names such as Molech and Milkom and thus possibly Meleketh). This word only occurs in Jeremiah 7:18 and in conjunction with the word for heaven: .
The similar but not identical feminine noun (malkut) occurs frequently in Scriptures to mean sovereign power, reign or kingdom (Numbers 24:7, Jeremiah 10:7, 1 Chronicles 26:31, Daniel 8:22).
The name Hammoleketh differs from the name Meleketh in the way it is pronounced (although the Masoretic pronunciation symbols were added long after the story was written) but also because it is preceded by what seems the Hebrew definite article (the ham-part). People were named after gods all the time (think of the many Baal-names), and perhaps the name Hammoleketh resulted from people talking about the Meleketh. Still turning the whole thing into a name is unusual.
NOBS Study Bible Name List solves the problem by simply stating The Queen as meaning for Hammoleketh. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names treats the name Hammoleketh by omitting the article and only treating Moleketh as a name. Hence Jones renders Queen.
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