🔼The name Onam: Summary
- [Their] Trouble, [Their] Vigor
- From the root און ('wn), to experience much trouble or have much vigor.
🔼The name Onam in the Bible
There are two men named Onam in the Bible, but neither plays an active part:
🔼Etymology of the name Onam
The name Onam comes from the remarkable root group און (wn), meaning either sorrow or vigor:
The verb און ('wn) appears to mean to experience a lot, to be subject to much. It doesn't occur in the Bible but in cognate languages it's either negative and means to be tired and troubled, or it's positive and means to be at rest and enjoy a life of plenty.
Nouns און ('awen) and תאנים (te'unim) are of the first category, and mean trouble, sorrow or toil. Noun און ('on) is of the second and describes an surplus of vigor or wealth and specifically of reproductive powers.
The added letter ם (mem) could indicate a personal pronoun of the third person masculine plural: their. The same word אונם occurs in Psalm 94:23 with the meaning of "their iniquity".
For a meaning of the name Onam, both NOBSE Study Bible Name List and BDB Theological Dictionary derive it from און II and read Vigorous. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names takes our name from the root און I, and proposes Weariness, Iniquity.