Omar (biblical figure)

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Omar (Hebrew: אוֹמָר‎, possibly meaning "eloquent" or "gifted speaker" in Hebrew, although it is a name in a different but close language)[1] was the name of a man mentioned in the Bible, the ancestor of a Semitic Edomite and Canaanite clan,[2] the son of Eliphaz (Esau's eldest son). Omar's brothers were Teiman (Yemmen), Zepho, Ga'atam, Kenaz and Amalek.[3][4]

Esau and his wife Adah (daughter of Elon the Hittite) were his grandparents. Accordingly, he was a great-grandson of Isaac the son of Abraham.

Historically, his name is first mentioned in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 36, verse 11. The name is not found in use by Jewish texts nor is it in use in modern day Hebrew, but a similar name 'Omer' (with a different pronunciation and spelling, beginning with a glottal Ayin and having a definite Hebrew meaning - a sheaf of wheat and also the offering brought to the temple for the new harvest) is a common name in Israel (Omer Adam for example is an Israeli popular singer).

The name Omar in various cultures[edit]

It is not clear if the name Omar in several cultures is after the biblical figure.

The name Omar is also a common Hispanic name in central America and the United states. It is not clear that this name originates in the biblical name.

The name Omar is also the English transliteration of the Arabic name of the Muslim leader Omar Ibn Khattab today written Umar. In Arabic it is pronounced with an opening glottal sound and is not of the biblical origin.

Famous name bearers of Omar[edit]

  • General Omar Bradley, named after a newsman Omar D. Gray who's name's origin is not clear.[5]
  • Omar Vizquel former Venezuellan baseball player. It is not clear that the Hispanic name refers to this biblical figure.
  • Omar Ibn Khattab Arabic name in English transliteration, originally pronounced with a glottal first letter, and now spelled Umar, was the second Caliph of the first Muslim Caliphate and a senior companion of the prophet Mohammad.
  • Omar Sharif is a famous actor, named after Omar Ibn Khattab. See Omar (name) for other known name bearers, named after Omar Ibn Khattab.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Peter Whiffin (2012), Names Amplification Bible, page 463
  2. ^ David Mande, Who's Who in the Jewish Bible, pag 315.
  3. ^ Idem
  4. ^ In the bible in original Hebrew: s:he:בראשית ל יא and s:he:דברי הימים א א לו
  5. ^ A General's Life, Omar Bradley's biography, and Omar D. Gray's biography