🔼The name Temeni: Summary
- Southerly, Prosperous
- From the root ימן (ymn), which has to do with the right hand side and the southern direction.
🔼The name Temeni in the Bible
The name Temeni occurs only once in the Bible, although this name is spelled the same (and pronounced slightly different) as the ethnonym Temanite.
🔼Etymology of the name Temeni
The name Teman appears to be constructed from the noun תימן (teman), meaning south, from the root ימן:
The root ימן (ymn) is of unclear pedigree and meaning but it has to do with both the right hand side and the southern direction, which are both decidedly positive (whereas left and north have negative connotations). This also indicates that one normally faces east, which corresponds to the past.
Noun ימין (yamin) means right, i.e. right hand, side or the right of other parts of the body. Adjective ימיני (yemini) meaning on the right. Verb ימן (yaman) means to go or choose the right or use the right hand. Adjective ימני (yemani) meaning right hand or right. Noun תימן (teman) meaning south.
The letter י (yod) upon which our name ends, may either create an adjective (southern), a possessive form (my south), or may be a remnant of יה (Yah) = יהו (Yahu) = יו (Yu), which in turn are abbreviated forms of the Tetragrammaton יהוה, YHWH, or Yahweh.
For a meaning of the name Temeni, NOBSE Study Bible Name List appears to go with the same Arabic connection that explains the name Imnah. Apparently, in Arabic the root ימן exists as well but with a primary meaning of being prosperous. NOBSE sees Temeni as a proper adjective and reads Fortunate.
Alfred Jones (Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names) doesn't treat Temeni separately but refers to this name in his article on the name Teman. He deems Temeni "different" and "derived from a place unknown". Jones translates the name Teman with Southern Quarter, and seems to regard Temeni as an ethnonym with the same meaning as Temanite. We may assume that he would translate Temeni as One From The Southern Quarter.
BDB Theological Dictionary doesn't interpret this name but does list it under the root ימן.