🔼The name Ahi: Summary
- My Brother, Brother (Of...)
- From the noun אח ('ah), brother.
🔼The name Ahi in the Bible
There are two men in the Bible named Ahi, although the name Ahi is the commonly accepted abbreviated form of the popular name Ahiah/Ahijah and Ahio. The men named Ahi in the Bible are:
🔼Etymology of the name Ahi
The name Ahi comes from the noun אח (ah), meaning brother:
The noun אח ('ah) means brother, or more broadly: a fellow member of a social economic node (a "house") within a broader economic whole.
This word's lavish inclusion in names strongly suggests that the deity was reckoned by this word — in modern times we mostly speak of Our Father in Heaven but in antiquity the deity appears to have also been addressed as Our Brother. The New Testament appears to entertain that dynamic in the tenet that the Word is God's Son, and all who have the Word are godly brothers. Also note the similarity with the verb חוה (hawa), to show, tell, make known.
The noun אחוה ('ahawa) means brotherhood and אחות ('ahot) means sister.
The letter yod on which our name ends may have all kinds of functions. We don't exactly know which one was the intention of the original composer of this name, but it's likely that Ahi is to Ahiah what Bill is to William. In that case, the yod is a remnant of יה (Yah) = יהו (Yahu) = יו (Yu), which in turn are abbreviated forms of the Tetragrammaton; the name of the Lord: YHWH.
The Vulgate saw the yod as an expression of plurality, and rendered this name Brethren.
But the yod may also indicate a possessive form, giving the name Ahi the meaning of My Brother. And in compound names that include Ahi as a segment (like Ahimelech or any of the Ahi-names) the Ahi-part usually (and probably) means Brother of.
For a meaning of the name Ahi, Alfred Jones (Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names) simply reads Brother, "the Divine name being understood," which is as curious as incomplete. NOBSE Study Bible Name List probably thinks along the same lines and reads Brother. BDB Theological Dictionary deems the name Ahi the same as Ahiah and renders Brother Of Yah(u). The name Ahi may also mean My Brother.