🔼The name Sheshan: Summary
- Whitish, Lily
- From the element שש (shesh), which denotes several whitish items, and particularly the noun שושן (shushan), lily.
🔼The name Sheshan in the Bible
There's only one man named Sheshan in the Bible. He was a son of Ishi, son of Appaim, who descended from Hezron of Judah (1 Chronicles 2:31). Sheshan is famous for giving his daughter to his Egyptian servant Jarha for a wife (1 Chronicles 2:35). This daughter is unnamed in verse 35, but perhaps it was the Ahlai mentioned in 2:31 (since Sheshan had no sons, only daughters — see 2:34).
🔼Etymology of the name Sheshan
The name Sheshan is probably related to the word שושן (shushan), meaning lily, or else to any of the words in the following cluster:
There's an odd correlation between the color white and the number six. The nouns שש (shesh) and שיש (shayish) mean alabaster, which is a whitish translucent material. The identical word שש (shesh) means six. The noun שושן (shushan) describes the lily, which has six leaves and is proverbially white. The adjective ישש (yashesh) or ישיש (yashish) means old or white-haired.
The relatively rare verb שוש (sus) or שיש (sis) means to exult or rejoice, and its nouns ששון (sason) and משוש (masos) mean exultation, joy or gladness. Despite their similarity to the previous, these words seem to have little to do with the number six or being white, which is possibly why these words were pointed differently in the Middle Ages (the previous words have sh-sounds while these words have s-sounds).
For a meaning of the name Sheshan, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Whitish (which is an adjective, while our name doesn't seem to be one). Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names proposes Lily. BDB Theological Dictionary does not offer an interpretation of this name.