🔼The name Shaharaim: Summary
- Double Dawn
- From the verb שחר (shahar), to be black but shiny, or ignorant but inquisitive.
🔼The name Shaharaim in the Bible
The wonderful name Shaharaim occurs only once in the Bible. Shaharaim of Benjamin had two wives whom he both divorced, Hushim and Baara, but only Hushim appears to have given him children (1 Chronicles 8:8). He went to Moab, married Hodesh and had some more sons.
🔼Etymology of the name Shaharaim
The name Shaharaim is a dual form of a noun taken from either one of the verbs שחר (shahar):
The verb שחר (shahar) means to be glossy, shiny black (not mat black); it often describes shiny black hair. The adjective שחר (shahor) means black, and adjective שחרחר (sheharhor) means blackish. Nouns שחור (shehor) and שחרות (shaharut) means blackness.
That our verb most probably emphasized inherent or even inner glow rather than a mere dark hue is made evident by the noun שחר (shahar), which means dawn. The denominative verb שחר (shahar) describes a diligent searching, which suggests that within the darkness of ignorance, the desire to search is the dawn.
It also demonstrates that this word for "dawn" had a symbolic meaning as strong as that of the words for light and enlightenment. Ultimately our verb means to be black but shiny, or ignorant but inquisitive.
It's not clear whether the name Shaharaim is supposed to mean Two Blacknesses or Two Dawns, and it really does both. Perhaps Shaharaim obtained his name from the time it took him to be born, suggesting that his mother's early labor started in the morning of one day and Shaharaim didn't arrive until the next.
For a meaning of the name Shaharaim, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Double Dawn and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names proposes Two Dawns.
BDB Theological Dictionary doesn't translate the name Shaharaim but does list it under שחר II (shahar II), the root of the noun שחר (shahar), meaning dawn.