Haran

HARAN (hā'răn, Heb. hārān, mountaineer)

The youngest brother of Abram, and father of Lot, Abram’s nephew. He died in Ur before his father Terah took his family from that city (Gen.11.27-Gen.11.28).A son of Caleb by his concubine Ephah. This Haran had a son named Gazez (1Chr.2.46).A Gershonite Levite who lived in the time of David. He was the son of Shimei (1Chr.23.9).


HARAN, CHARRAN (hā'răn, chă'răn, Heb. hārān, Gr. charran). A city located in northern Mesopotamia, on the Balikh River, a branch of the Euphrates, to which Abram’s father Terah emigrated with his family (Gen.11.31). After his father’s death, Abram left this city to go into the land of Canaan (Gen.12.4). His brother Nahor remained there. Abraham later sent his servant there to find a wife for his son Isaac among his relatives (Gen.24.4). Afterward Jacob, at the request of his father Isaac, came to this same area in search of a wife (Gen.29.4-Gen.29.5). In the time of Hezekiah, Rabshakeh, an officer of Sennacherib, when delivering a propaganda lecture to the people of Jerusalem, mentioned that Haran and other cities in the same area had been conquered by Assyria (2Kgs.19.12; Isa.37.12). Ezekiel mentions this city as one of those that carried on trade with Tyre (Ezek.27.23).

Haran is often referred to in Assyrian and Babylonian records under the form of harranu, Anglicized as Harran. The term means “road,” probably because this city was located at the intersection of the north-south trade route from Damascus and the east-west route between Carchemish and Nineveh. A center of worship of the moon-god Sin was established there in very early times. The city and temple were destroyed in the wars of the Assyrian kings. After the fall of Nineveh in 612 b.c., some Assyrian refugees fled to Haran and held out there until 610. Nabonidus, the king of Babylon, who delighted in restoring old temples, rebuilt the city and temple and reinstated the worship of the moon-god there about seventy-five years later. This city is mentioned in Mari documents in the form of Nakhur, probably from Nahor, Abram’s brother. The Romans knew it as Carrhae, famous as the place where the Parthians defeated Crassus in 53 b.c. It is still in existence as Harran, near the original site in southern Turkey. The present-day Muslims who live in the area have many traditions concerning Abraham.——CEH


HARAN hâr’ ən (חָרָ֖ן). 1. Son of Terah; brother of Abraham and Nahor; father of Lot and two daughters, Milcah and Iscah (Gen 11:27, 29).

2. A Judahite; son of Caleb and his concubine Ephah (1 Chron 2:46).

3. A Levite; son of the Gershonite Shimei (1 Chron 23:9).