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For other uses, see Haran (disambiguation).

Haran or Aran (Hebrew: הָרָן, Modern: Hārān)[1] is a man in the Book of Genesis in the Hebrew Bible.[2] He died in Ur of the Chaldees (Ur Kaśdim), was a son of Terah, and brother of Abraham. Through his son Lot, Haran was the ancestor of the Moabites and Ammonites, and through his daughter Milcah he was ancestral to the Aramaeans and the Israelites. Jesus Christ, known to Muslims as the prophet Isa is counted among his descendants.

Haran and his family[edit]

Terah, a descendant of Shem son of Noah, was the father of Abram/Abraham, Nahor, and Haran. Their home's location is not certain, but it is usually supposed to have been in Mesopotamia. Besides Lot and Milcah, Haran fathered a daughter Iscah.

After Haran died in Ur of the Chaldees 'before his father Terah', his family travelled towards Canaan, the promised land. However, Terah stopped at Charan (or Haran) and settled there, as did Nahor and Milcah, whereas Lot accompanied Abraham and others onwards to Canaan.[3][4]

All the children of Jacob (also called Israel) are descended from Haran, through Milcah (see family tree below). As a descendant of David, Jesus Christ is a descendant of Haran through David's great-grandmother Ruth, a Moabitess[5] and hence a descendant of Lot. Solomon's wife Naamah, mother of Rehoboam and ancestress to all of Judah's subsequent kings, was an Ammonitess and thus also descended from Haran.[6]


The name Haran possibly comes from the Hebrew word har, = "mountain", with a West Semitic suffix appearing with proper names, anu/i/a.[7] Thus, it has been suggested that Haran may mean "mountaineer".[8] Personal names which resemble Haran include ha-ri and ha-ru, from texts of second millennium BC Mari and Alalakh, and ha-ar-ri, from one of the Amarna Letters—but their meanings are uncertain.[9][10][11] The initial element of Haran can be found in the Phoenician personal name hr-b`l, and also in the Israelite personal name hryhw from Gibeon.[11]

Family tree[edit]

Dotted lines are marriage connections.

7 sons
1st daughter
2nd daughter
1. Reuben
2. Simeon
3. Levi
4. Judah
9. Issachar
10. Zebulun
11. Dinah
7. Gad
8. Asher
5. Dan
6. Naphtali
12. Joseph
13. Benjamin

Others called Haran[edit]

Haran is the name of two other people mentioned in the Bible.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Freedman, Meyers & Beck. Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible (ISBN 0802824005, ISBN 978-0-8028-2400-4), 2000, p.551)
  2. ^ Genesis 11:27-32
  3. ^ Genesis 11:28-12:5
  4. ^ Eerdmans dictionary, p. 997
  5. ^ Ruth 4:21-22
  6. ^ 1Kings 14:21,31, 1Chronicles 3:10-16
  7. ^ D. Sivan, Grammatical Analysis and Glossary of the Northwest Semitic Vocables in Akkadian Texts of the 15th-13th C., BC from Canaan and Syria, 1984, p.97-98
  8. ^ A Dictionary of the Bible: Dealing with its Language, Vol. 1, 1899, p.301
  9. ^ H. Huffmon, Amorite Personal Names in the Mari Archives: A Structural and Lexical Study, 1965, p.204
  10. ^ D. Sivan, Grammatical Analysis of Northwest Semitic Vocables, p. 222
  11. ^ a b Alexander & Baker. Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch, 2002, p. 380