🔼The name Puvah: Summary
- Mouth, Edge
- From the noun פה (peh), mouth or edge.
🔼The name Puvah in the Bible
There are two men named Puvah in the Bible:
- A son of Issachar, the ninth son of Jacob and the fifth son of Leah. This Puvah is the ancestor of the family of the פוני, the Punites (Numbers 26:23). In Genesis 46:13 and Numbers 26:23 he is called פוה, and these variants are transliterated in English as Puah, Puvvah or Phuvah, depending on the Bible version.
- The "father" of Tola the judge (Judges 10:1). It's not clear whether this Puvah is actually not the same as the first.
🔼Etymology of the name Puvah
The name Puvah is possibly a transliteration of a name from a language other than Hebrew (Arabic, says Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names), but Arabic is related to Hebrew, and the name Puvah is related to the Hebrew noun פה (peh), meaning mouth:
The verb פאה (pa'a) means to cleave or break apart (what one does with a sword) and the derived noun פאה (pe'a) means corner or side.
Apparently related to the above is the otherwise inexplicable noun פה (peh) or פו (po) or פי (pi), meaning mouth. This word has a somewhat greater compass than its English counterpart, and also includes the edge of a sword (hence the sword protruding from the white horseman's mouth; Revelation 19:15). This word may also be used to mean extremity or end, which brings it in close proximity to the noun פאה (pe'a), corner or side.
A second word of similar form is the adverb פה (poh), which means here or hither. This adverb is alternately spelled פו (po) and פא (pa').
For a meaning of the name Puvah, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads the rather liberal Utterance and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names has Mouth. BDB Theological Dictionary does not interpret our name but does list it under its article on the noun פה (peh), meaning mouth.