Sharon meaning | Sharon etymology

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Sharon in Biblical Hebrew
Biblical female character
Biblical location (town, country, etc)
Has to do with darkness
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The name Sharon in the Bible

Even though in our present culture the name Sharon is a popular name for girls (that's why we list it, admittedly incorrect, as a "Biblical female character"), in the Bible it only occurs as the name of two separate regions: one is a pasture land east of the Jordan occupied by the sons of Gad (1 Chronicles 5:16), the other is the plain that covered much of the north coast of Israel (1 Chronicles 27:29).

The famous phrase "I am the Rose of Sharon," is exclaimed by the bride of the Song Of Solomon (Song of Solomon 2:1 — but see the note below).

The only other book in the Hebrew Bible in which the name Sharon occurs is Isaiah (33:9, 35:2 and 65:10), and in the Greek New Testament the name Sharon is mentioned only in Acts 9:35 (spelled Σαρων, Saron).

Etymology of the name Sharon

The name Sharon is one of those names of which the etymology and applied meaning diverge. BDB Theological Dictionary reports that the famous theologian Gesenius "plausibly connected" the name Sharon to the verb ישר (yashar), meaning to be level or straight:

Abarim Publications Theological Dictionary

However, despite a plausible connection to ישר, the name Sharon is spelled identical to the common Hebrew word שרון (shiryan), meaning body armor. It comes from the unused root שׁרה III (shara IV):

Abarim Publications Theological Dictionary

Sharon meaning

For a meaning of the name Sharon, NOBSE reads Plain and Jones reads A Great Plain. But to a Hebrew audience, especially a Hebrew audience that never heard of the famous theologian Gesenius, the name Sharon sounded like Body Armor. A Roman name that means body armor is Loricatus, and another Hebrew name that might mean the same is Zabbai.

Note on 'Rose of Sharon':

In the Song of Solomon the bride of the story calls out something that is traditionally translated with "I am the rose of Sharon," (2:1) but 'rose' is not correct.

The word is חבצלת (habasselet) and denotes a crocus or meadow saffron. But the nod towards the actual plant is eclipsed by the wonderful way this word may fall apart to a creative audience:

חבב (habab) is a rare word, used only once in the Bible (Deuteronomy 33:3). It means love in the sense of the love that God feels for the people. A derivation is the word חב (hob), a rare word meaning bosom (Job 31:33).

צלל (salal) means to grow dark and derivation צל (sel) means shadow.

The word that indicates this flower seems to means literally Overshadowed By God's Love.

"I am black but lovely," says Sharon's saffron (1:5 & 2:1).

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