Chedorlaomer

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Chedorlaomer
King of Elam
Royal house Elam

Chedorlaomer or Kedorlaomer (/ˌkɛdərˈləmər/; Hebrew: כדרלעמרKĕdorla`omer) "a handful of sheaves",[1] is a king of Elam in the book of Genesis Chapter 14.[2] He ruled fourteen years, from the East in southwestern Persia,[3] occupying the regions east of the Jordan river, in the days of Abram. In the last year of his reign, he campaigned against five city kingdoms in response to an uprising.

Etymology[edit]

The name Chedorlaomer is associated with familiar Elamite components, such as kudur, meaning “servant”, and Lagamar who was a high goddess in the Elamite pantheon.[4][5]

The linguistic origins of the name Chedorlaomer may be traced to Persian or Assyrian names. There is a linguistic agreement in the Persian pronunciation for Kĕdorla`omer, pronounced ked·or·lä·o'·mer. The association to Assyrian names are Kudurlagamar and Kudur-Mabuk, a ruler in Larsa from 1770 BCE to 1754 BCE.[6] However, the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia stated that, apart from the fact that Chedorlaomer can be identified as a proper Elamite compound, "all else is matter of controversy" and "the records give only the rather negative result that from Babylonian and Elamite documents nothing definite has been learned of Chedorlaomer".[6]

Background[edit]

Chedorlaomer's reign[edit]

After twelve years of being under Elamite rule, in the thirteenth year, the Cities of the Plain rebelled against Chedorlaomer. This spurred a domino effect that prompted the Elamite king to regain control. To ensure his success, he called upon three other allies from Shinar, Ellasar, and Tidal "nations" regions. (Genesis 14:9)[7]

Chedorlaomer's allies[edit]

The following allies fought in every campaign under Chedorlaomer's direction, while in the fourteenth and final year of his rule.[8]

Chedorlaomer's campaigns[edit]

The purpose of Chedorlaomer's campaigns was to show Elam's might to all territories under Elamite authority. His armies and allies plundered tribes and cities, for their provisions, who were en route to the revolting cities of the Jordan plain.

Chedorlaomer's demise[edit]

Main article: Battle of Siddim

After warring against the cities of the Plain at the Battle of Siddim, King Chedorlaomer went to Sodom and Gomorrah to collect booty. At Sodom, amongst the spoils of war, he took Lot and his entire household captive. When Lot's uncle, Abram received news of what happened, he assembled a battle unit of three hundred and eighteen men who pursued the Elamite forces north of Damascus to Hobah. Abram and one of his divisions defeated Chedorlaomer.[10] According to the King James Version, verse 17 is translated that Chedorlaomer was actually slaughtered.[11] Young's Literal Translation uses the term smiting.[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ כְּדָרְלָעֹמֶר [Chedorlaomer], retrieved 2012-12-21 
  2. ^ Genesis 14:1
  3. ^ Knanishu, Joseph (1899), About Persia and its People, Lutheran Augustana book concern, printers, p. 228, retrieved 2012-12-21 
  4. ^ Kitchen, Kenneth (1966), Ancient Orient and Old Testament, Tyndale Press, p. 44, retrieved 2012-12-21 
  5. ^ Archer, Gleason Jr (19 April 2011), "Genesis", New International Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties, Zondervan, p. 175, ISBN 978-0-310-87337-2, retrieved 2012-12-21 
  6. ^ a b "Chedorlaomer", Jewish Encyclopedia, retrieved 2012-12-21 
  7. ^ a b Nelson, Russell (November 2000), "Chedorlaomer", in Freedman, David; Meyers, Allen; Beck, Astrid, Eerdman's Dictionary of the Bible (Grand Rapids: Wm B Eerdmans Publishing Company): 232, ISBN 9780802824004, retrieved 2012-12-21 
  8. ^ Genesis 14:1-4
  9. ^ Gen.14:8-10
  10. ^ Genesis 14:11–17
  11. ^ Genesis 14:17
  12. ^ Genesis 14:17