🔼The name Maralah: Summary
- Place Of Reeling, Place Of The Flag
- From the verb רעל (ra'al), to reel or quiver.
🔼The name Maralah in the Bible
The name Maralah occurs only once in the Bible. It's mentioned as one of the border-markers of the area allotted to the tribe of Zebulun, which was in the north of Israel, close to the sea (Joshua 19:11).
🔼Etymology of the name Maralah
Since the letter מ (mem) often serves as a prefix that means "agent or place of," and the letter ה (he) often serves as the mark of femininity of a noun, or else is a particle of direction (meaning towards), the name Maralah could plausibly be construed to derive from the verb רעל (ra'al), meaning to reel or quiver:
The verb רעל (ra'al) describes the movement of a flag or veil in the wind: to quiver or reel. Nouns רעל (ra'al) and תרעלה (tar'ela) means a reeling, and noun רעלה (re'ala) describes a reeler or flag or veil.
For a meaning of the name Maralah, Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Place Of Concussions. BDB Theological Dictionary does list our name under the root רעל (ra'al) but also, uncharacteristically, refers to its alphabetical listing under מ (it's unclear which position of BDB this illustrates). NOBSE Study Bible Name List proposes an even less explicable Downward Slope.
Here at Abarim Publications we guess that Maralah was simply a border marker made out of a flag of sorts. It's a name like Six Flags, but then without the Six.