🔼The name Sheerah: Summary
- Remnant, Family, Consanguinity
- From the verb שאר (sha'ar), to be a remnant.
🔼The name Sheerah in the Bible
The feminine name Sheerah occurs only one time in the Bible, in 1 Chronicles 7:24, but it's not clear whose daughter she is. Sheerah is either the daughter of Ephraim (say NOBSE Study Bible Name List and BDB Theological Dictionary) or she is the daughter of Beriah, the son of Ephraim (says Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names). But however her family ties work, she's quite an industrious woman. She builds two or three cities: Lower and Upper Beth-horon, and Uzzen-sheerah.
🔼Etymology of the name Sheerah
The name Sheerah is an otherwise non-existent feminine noun deriving from the verb שאר (sha'ar), meaning to be a remnant:
The verb שאר (sha'ar) means to remain, be a remnant, to be a small but perpetually surviving portion of a much larger original mass that was eliminated. Nouns שאר (she'ar) and שארית (she'erit) mean rest, residue, remnant, remainder and so on.
Noun שאר (she'er) means flesh (i.e. living muscle mass rather than butchered meat). It's often assumed that this noun comes from an identical second verb שאר (sha'ar) of unknown meaning, but flesh is obviously that what remains from food, when excrement and labor are subtracted. This word for flesh also signified family relations (one's flesh and blood), which too demonstrates this word's attachment to a perpetually maintained minority within a huge society of irrelevant strangers.
Noun שאר (se'or) means leaven. In the modern Middle Ages this word became punctuated as שׂאר (dot to the left), whereas the previous words were pointed שׁאר (dot to the right). But this difference didn't exist until many centuries after Christ. Properly domesticated leaven is valuable. Bakers and brewers would never use up all their leavened dough and beer but keep a remnant of the old to mix in with the new, so that the original leaven could proliferate and permeate the fresh batch.
Commentators appear to relate our name mostly to the noun שאר (she'er), flesh or rather: family or blood-relative. For a meaning of the name Sheerah, Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Consanguinity, i.e. a female relation by blood. NOBSE Study Bible Name List has Blood-Relationship.