🔼The name Jerioth: Summary
- Tent Curtains
- From the noun יריעה (yeria), tent curtain, from the verb ירע (yara'), to quiver.
🔼The name Jerioth in the Bible
There's some controversy about the one and only Jerioth in the Bible (1 Chronicles 2:18). The way the Hebrew is organized, it can either be that Caleb, the son of Hezron, has a wife Azubah, who bore him Jerioth to start with and then Jesher, Shobab and Ardon. But it can also be read to say that Caleb has sons with his wife Azubah and also a few with some Jerioth, who is neither said to be his wife nor concubine, and that's odd. Odder still is that the text goes on to list "her" sons, and it's not clear if that "her" refers to Azubah or Jerioth. If we assume that Jerioth was a low-ranking concubine, the sons would be of the wife, but that the author omits her rank or status is curious.
The highly respected BDB Theological Dictionary lists Jerioth as a masculine name but immediately adds a question mark. In the text, in front of the name Jerioth occurs the ubiquitous untranslatable particle את (et), which is the mark of the accusative. BDB proposes that this את maybe should have been the word בת (bat), meaning daughter. That would mean that the scribe who copied this document made a booboo and that's a very tall order, even for BDB. And that BDB then still wonders if this name should be masculine shows no real resolve in this matter.
Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names states that Jerioth is "supposed to be a wife of Caleb," but refers to one Conrad Pellicanus who also figured that Jerioth was a son of Caleb and Azubah. NAS and Jay P. Green both read, "by Azubah his wife and by Jerioth..". NIV reads a creative, "by Azubah his wife (and by Jerioth)..".
KJV, ASV, Darby and Webster all have Jerioth as childbearing woman of Caleb. Young, amazingly, has the fantastic, "And Caleb son of Hezron hath begotten Azubah, Isshah and Jerioth" (the Hebrew word for wife is אשה — ishsha). The Dutch Statenvertaling has Jerioth in the arms of Caleb but the Dutch NBG sees Jerioth as the daughter of Azubah, and the three boys the children of Jerioth. In the German Elberfelder, Schlachter and Luther, Jerioth is Caleb's.
🔼Etymology of the name Jerioth
The name Jerioth is a feminine plural noun derived of the verb ירע (yara'), meaning to quiver:
The verb ירע (yara') means to quiver but is used only once. Much more common is the noun יריעה (yeria), which means curtain and specifically describes a tent curtain.
For a meaning of the name Jerioth, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Tent Curtains. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names has Curtains, Tents.