🔼The name Iim in the Bible
The name Iim is complicated. To start with, there are two separate Hebrew names that both are written as Iim in English. We'll call them Iim I (עיים) and Iim II (איים):
🔼The name Iim I: Summary
- From the verb עוה ('awa), to bend or twist.
🔼The name Iim I in the Bible
The name Iim as spelled with the letter 'ayin, occurs twice in the Bible. The first time it occurs it appears to be equated with the name Iye-abarim (Numbers 33:45). Coming from Oboth, the people arrived in Iye-abarim (עיי העברים), on the border of Moab, but when they set out from there, the place is called עיים. Apparently, scholars can't agree on how to properly transliterate this name. The NAS, NIV and ASV have Iyim; the KJV and Young have Iim, and JSP and Darby speak of Ijim.
The other time Iim I is mentioned in the Bible it probably denotes a different town, a bit to the south of the previous one, and on the west side of the Jordan. It's mentioned in Joshua 15:29, among the towns of Judah that were situated in the extreme south, close to the border with Edom. All translations except Darby speak of Iim; Darby has Ijim.
🔼Etymology of the name Iim I
The name Iim appears to be a regular masculine plural of the noun עי ('i), meaning ruin (this plural word meaning ruins occurs at least twice in the Bible, in Psalm 79:1 and Jeremiah 26:18):
The verb עוה ('awa) means to bend or twist, usually with a bottom line or ruin or perversion. Noun עון ('awon) means iniquity or guilt. Verb עוה ('awa) means to commit iniquity of do wrong. Nouns עוה ('awwa), עי ('i) and מעי (me'i) mean distortion or ruin. Plural noun עועים ('iw'im) means a distorting or warping.
🔼Iim I meaning
For a meaning of this name Iim, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Ruins and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names proposes Ruinous Heaps. BDB Theological Dictionary does not offer an interpretation of this name and lists it alphabetically and not under a particular root.
🔼The name Iim II: Summary
- From the noun אי ('i), jackal.
🔼The name Iim II in the Bible
It's not wholly certain whether the word איים should be considered a name or not. The only modern translation to do so is the Young Translation, which reads for Jeremiah 50:39: "Therefore dwell do Ziim with Iim, Yea, dwelt in her have daughters of the ostrich..".
🔼Etymology of the name Iim II
This version of the name Iim is probably just the plural of the noun אי ('i), meaning jackal:
There are four different verbs אוה ('wh), which all appear to express a desire or movement toward something. Noun אי ('i) means coast, which has been mankind's preferred place to settle since time immemorial. Nouns או ('aw), מאוי (ma'away), אוה ('awwa) and תאוה (ta'awa) all mean desire. The noun אות ('ot) means mark or sign, and humanity's earliest marks were not to assert private ownership but rather a collective identity: something to draw toward and gather around. Noun אי ('i) means jackal, and noun איה (ayya) means hawk or falcon. These creatures were possibly named after their supplicatory calls, or else their rapturous method of predation.
The conjunction או ('o) means "or." The interjection אי ('i) expresses regret: "alas!" Adverb אי ('i) may serve as a particle of negation ("to be desired" and thus not so), or as an interrogative adverb, meaning "where?", usually in rhetorical questions. The substantive אין ('ayin) expresses negation or nothingness and occurs hundreds of times in the construct מאין (m'ayin), which literally means "from where is not?", as introduction to a rhetorical question concerning something that is true in all known parts of the world: "where isn't it so that such and such, hmm?"
🔼Iim II meaning
It's not clear how Robert Young figured that Iim is a name, because these Iim were to live in the ruined city of Babylon. The only way this would fit if the Iim are considered a people. But whether a name or not, Iim II means Jackals.