Genesis 10:7
And the sons of Cush; Seba, and Havilah, and Sabtah, and Raamah, and Sabtecha: and the sons of Raamah; Sheba, and Dedan.
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(7) Sons of Cush.—Of Cush there are five subdivisions, of which one is again parted into two. These are—

1. Seba.—The name at this time of an Arabian tribe, which subsequently migrated into Africa, and settled in Meroë, which, according to Josephus, still bore in his days this appellation. They also left their name on the eastern side of the Red Sea, not far to the north of the Straits of Bab-el-Mandeb.

2. Havilah, upon the river Pison (Genesis 2:11), was undoubtedly a region of Arabia, situated probably upon the Persian Gulf. Havilah is again mentioned in Genesis 10:29.

3. Sabtah.—Probably Hadramaut, in Arabia Felix. (See Note on Genesis 10:26.)

4. Raamah, on the Persian Gulf, was divided into Dedan upon the south-west and Sheba in the centre, while Havilah lay upon the north-west side. Of these, Sheba subsequently rose to fame as the kingdom of the Himyarite Arabs.

5. Sabtechah.—Apparently still more to the south of Dedan, but placed by some on the eastern side of the gulf.

Thus, then, at the time when this table was written the southern half of Arabia was Cushite, and a swarthy race of men is still found there, especially in Yemen and Hadramaut, far darker than the light brown Arabians. Migrating from place to place along the sea-shore, the passage of the Cushites into Nubia and Abyssinia was easy. But their chief home was, at this period, in Mesopotamia, and the cuneiform inscriptions have now revealed their long struggle there with men of the race of Shem.

10:1-7 This chapter shows concerning the three sons of Noah, that of them was the whole earth overspread. No nation but that of the Jews can be sure from which of these seventy it has come. The lists of names of fathers and sons were preserved of the Jews alone, for the sake of the Messiah. Many learned men, however, have, with some probability, shown which of the nations of the earth descended from each of the sons of Noah To the posterity of Japheth were allotted the isles of the gentiles; probably, the island of Britain among the rest. All places beyond the sea from Judea are called isles, Jer 25:22. That promise, Isa 42:4, The isles shall wait for his law, speaks of the conversion of the gentiles to the faith of Christ.Kush had five sons and two grandsons, who were reckoned among the founders of nations.

(19) Seba is associated with Kush Isaiah 43:3; Isaiah 45:14. Josephus (Ant. I. 6, 2; II. 10, 2) places him in Meroe, a country almost insulated by the Nile and its branches, the Astapus (Blue Nile) and Astaboras (Atbarah).

(20) Havilah occurs as the name of a country in the antediluvian times. The present Havilah may refer to a tribe in Africa, called Avalitae, lying south of Bab-el-mandeb, which corresponds very well with the situation of Kush and Seba. This nation, however, may also have a representative in the Χαυλοταῖοι Chaulotaioi of Strabo (xvi. 728), situated on the Persian Gulf, where some other Kushites were to be found. The fragments of this nation may have separated by migration, and left its name in both localities.

(21) Sabtah, Josephus finds in the Astaborans of Ethiopia, others in Sabota, a town in southwest Arabia.

(22) Ramah is traced in Rhegma on the southeast of Arabia.

(23) Sabteka is the third name, beginning with the same syllable. Such names are frequent from the Persian Gulf to the coast of Africa. Some find this place on the coast of Abyssinia, others in Samydake on the east side of the Persian Gulf. From Ramah are two tribes descended.

(24) Sheba, and (25) Dedan, lying in the south of Arabia or on the Persian Gulf. Daden, an island in the gulf, now Barhein, may represent the latter.

6. sons of Ham—emigrated southward, and their settlements were: Cush in Arabia, Canaan in the country known by his name, and Mizraim in Egypt, Upper and Lower. It is generally thought that his father accompanied him and personally superintended the formation of the settlement, whence Egypt was called "the land of Ham" [Ps 105:23, 27; 106:22]. Seba; or, Saba, or Sheba, whose seed were the Sabeans in Arabia the Desert; see Psalm 72:10 Isaiah 43:3; and, as some think, the Abyssines in Africa.

Havilah, the father of the inhabitants of the land of Havilah, mentioned Genesis 2:11; a land in the most eastern part of Arabia, this being opposed to Shur, a desert near Egypt, as the two remotest bounds of Arabia, Genesis 25:18 1 Samuel 15:7.

Sabtah was father of those people who were seated in the lower part of Arabia the Happy, near the Persian Gulf, who also sent forth a colony into Persia. For in those parts we meet with the Sabateni in Josephus, the Stabaei and Messabathi in Ptolemy and Pliny.

Raamah, from whom descended another people dwelling in the same Arabia. See Ezekiel 27:22.

Sabtechah, the father of another people adjoining to them.

Sheba was father either of that people which inhabited Ethiopia, who were known by that name; see 1 Kings 10:1, Ki 10:4, ze 27:22, Matthew 12:42 Acts 8:27; or rather of another people in Arabia. So the several sons of Cush are conveniently seated one near another. And those Ethiopians in Africa might be a colony either of these, or rather of the posterity of the former Seba.

Dedan; of whose posterity see Ezekiel 27:15, ze 38:13.

And the sons of Cush,.... The first born of Ham, who had five sons, next mentioned, besides Nimrod, spoken of afterwards by himself:

Seba, and Havilah, and Sabtah, and Raamah, and Sabtecha; the first of these is Seba, the founder of the Sabaeans, according to Josephus (p), a people seated in Arabia Deserta, which seem to be the Sabaeans brought from the wilderness, Ezekiel 23:42 and very probably the same that plundered Job of his cattle, Job 1:14. The second son is Havilah, who, as Josephus (q) says, was the father of the Evilaeans, now called Getuli; but the posterity of Havilah seem to be the same whom Strabo (r) calls Chaulotaeans, and whom he speaks of along with the Nabataeans and Agraeans, a people near Arabia Felix; and by Pliny (s) they are called Chavelaeans, and whom he speaks of as Arabians, and places them to the east of the Arabian Scenites. The third son is Sabtah; from him, Josephus (t) says, came the Sabathenes, who, by the Greeks, are called Astabari; the posterity of this man seemed to have settled in some part of Arabia Felix, since Ptolemy (u) makes mention of Sabbatha as the metropolis of that country, called by Pliny (w) Sabotale, or rather Sabota, as it should be read; Ptolemy places another city in this country he calls Saphtha, which seems to have its name from this man. The fourth son is Raamah or Ragmas, as Josephus calls (x) him, from whom sprung the Ragmaeans he says; and most of the ancients call him Rhegmah, the letter being pronounced as a "G", as in Gaza and Gomorrah: his posterity were also seated in Arabia Felix, near the Persian Gulf, where Ptolemy (y) places the city Rhegama, or as it is in the Greek text, Regma. The fifth son is Sabtecha, whom some make to be the father of a people in the same country, Arabia Felix, near the Persian Gulf, called Sachalitae; but Dr. Wells (z) thinks, that the descendants of this man might be from him regularly enough styled at first by the Greeks, Sabtaceni, which name might be afterwards softened into Saraceni, by which name it is well known the people of the northern parts of Arabia, where he places the descendants of this man, were formerly denominated; though Bochart (a) carries them into Carmania in Persia, there being a short cut over the straits of the Persian Gulf, out of Arabia thither, where he finds a city called Samydace, and a river, Samydachus, which he thinks may come from Sabtecha, the letters "B" and "M" being frequently changed, as Berodach is called Merodach, and Abana, Amana, and so in other names.

And the sons of Raamah; Sheba, and Dedan; no account is given of any of the posterity of the other sons of Cush, only of this his fourth son Raamah, who is said to have two sons; the first is called Sheba, from whom came the Sabaeans, according to Josephus (b); not the Sabaeans before mentioned in Arabia Deserta, but those in Arabia Felix, where Pomponius Mela (c) and Strabo (d) seat a people called Sabaeans, and whose country abounded with frankincense, myrrh, and cinnamon; the latter makes mention of a city of theirs called Mariaba, and seems to be the same that is now called Mareb, and formerly Saba (e), very likely from this man. The other son, Dedan, is called by Josephus (f) Judadas, whom he makes to be founder of the Judadaeans, a nation of the western Ethiopians; but the posterity of this man most probably settled in Arabia, and yet are to be distinguished from the Dedanim in Isaiah 21:13 who were Arabians also, but descended from Dedan the son of Jokshan, a son of Abraham by Keturah, Genesis 25:3 as well as from the inhabitants of Dedan in Edom, Jeremiah 25:23 it is observed, that near the city Regma before mentioned, on the same coast eastward, was another city called Dedan; and to this day Daden, from which the neighbouring country also takes its name, as Bochart (g) has observed, from Barboza, an Italian writer, in his description of the kingdom of Ormus: so that we need not doubt, says Dr. Wells (h), but that here was the settlement of Dedan the son of Raamah or Rhegma, and brother of Sheba.

(p) Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 1. c. 6. sect. 1.) (q) Ibid. (r) Geograph. l. 16. p. 528. (s) Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 11. (t) Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 1. c. 6. sect. 1.) (u) Geograph. l. 6. c. 7. (w) Nat. Hist. l. 6. c. 28. (x) Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 1. c. 6. sect. 1.) (y) Ut supra. (Geograph. l. 6. c. 7.) (z) Geography of the Old Testament, vol. 1. p. 198. (a) Phaleg l. 4. c. 4. col. 218. (b) Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 1. c. 6. sect. 1.) (c) De Situ Orbis, l. 3. c. 8. (d) Geograph. l. 16. p. 536. (e) Via. Pocock. Specimen Arab. Hist p. 57. (f) Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 1. c. 6. sect. 1.) (g) Phaleg. l. 4. c. 6. col. 219. (h) Ut supra, (Geography of the Old Testament, vol. 1.) p. 197.

And the sons of Cush; Seba, and Havilah, and Sabtah, and Raamah, and Sabtechah: and the sons of Raamah; Sheba, and Dedan.
7. And the sons of Cush] The names given in this verse are usually identified with the names of tribes, or places, on the African coast, or on the opposite shores of Arabia.

Seba] Cf. Psalm 72:10; Isaiah 43:3; Isaiah 45:14, where it is named with Egypt and Cush; identified by Josephus (Ant. Jud. ii. 10, § 2) with “Meroë”; but now generally supposed to denote tribes on the coast of the Red Sea in the neighbourhood of Massowah.

Havilah] The name occurs again in Genesis 10:29 among “the sons of Joktan”; possibly a branch of the same Arabian tribe which had settled on the African coast. See also Genesis 2:11, Genesis 25:18.

Raamah] Mentioned also in Ezekiel 27:22 for its trade with Tyre, and with Sheba.

Sabtah … Sabteca] Unknown.

Sheba] Also in Genesis 10:28, among “the sons of Joktan,” and in Genesis 25:3, among “the sons of Keturah.” The trade of this people and their dependencies consisted especially of spices, precious stones, and gold (Ezekiel 27:22). The occurrence of the name of “Sheba” here among the sons of Ham, and in Genesis 10:28 among the sons of Shem, illustrates the difficulty of identification.

Dedan] Mentioned also in Genesis 25:3; apparently an Arabian tribe, bordering on Edom (Ezekiel 25:13), and occasionally brought into contact with Israel through trade. Cf. Isaiah 21:13; Jeremiah 25:23; Ezekiel 27:20.

Verse 7. - And the sons of Cush; Seba. Meroe, in Nubia, north of Ethiopia (Josephus, 'Ant.,' 2. 10). And Havilah. Αὐιλὰ (LXX.); may refer to an African tribe, the Avalitae, south of Babelmandeb (Keil, Lange, Murphy), or the district of Chaulan in Arabia Felix (Rosenmüller, Kalisch, Wordsworth). Verse 29 mentions Havilah as a Shemite territory. Kalisch regards them as "the same country, extending from the Arabian to the Persian Gulf, and, on account of its vast extent, easily divided into two distinct parts" (cf. Genesis 2:11). And Sabtah. The Astaborans of Ethiopia (Josephus, Gesenius, Kalisch); the Ethiopians of Arabia, whose chief city was Sabota (Knobel, Rosenmüller, Lange, Keil). And Raamah. Ρέγμα (LXX.); Ragma on the Persian Gulf, in Oman (Bochart, Rosenmüller, Kalisch, Lange). And Sabtechah. Nigritia (Targum, Jonathan), which the name Subatok, discovered on Egyptian monuments, seems to favor (Kalisch); on the east of the Persian Gulf at Samydace of Carmania (Be-chart, Knobel, Rosenmüller, Lange). And the sons of Raamah; Sheba. The principal city of Arabia Felix (1 Kings 10:1; Job 1:15; Job 6:19; Psalm 72:10, 15; Isaiah 60:6; Jeremiah 6:20; Ezekiel 27:22; Joel 3:8); occurs again (Genesis 5:28) as a son of Joktan; probably was peopled both by Hamites and Shemites. And Dedan. Daden on the Persian Gulf (vide Isaiah 21:13; Jeremiah 49:8; Ezekiel 25:13; Ezekiel 27:12-15). Genesis 10:7Descendants of Cush. Seba: the inhabitants of Mero; according to Knobel, the northern Ethiopians, the ancient Blemmyer, and modern Bisharin. Havilah: the Αὐαλῖται or Ἀβαλῖται of the ancients, the Macrobian Ethiopians in modern Habesh. Sabtah: the Ethiopians inhabiting Hadhramaut, whose chief city was called Sabatha or Sabota. Raamah: Ῥεγμά, the inhabitants of a city and bay of that name in south-eastern Arabia (Oman). Sabtecah: the Ethiopians of Caramania, dwelling to the east of the Persian Gulf, where the ancients mention a seaport town and a river Σαμυδάκη. The descendants of Raamah, Sheba and Dedan, are to be sought in the neighbourhood of the Persian Gulf, "from which the Sabaean and Dedanitic Cushites spread to the north-west, where they formed mixed tribes with descendants of Joktan and Abraham." See notes on Genesis 10:28 and Genesis 25:3.
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