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RESEN (rē’sĕn, Heb. resen, fortified place). A town founded by Nimrod (Gen.10.8-Gen.10.12) between Nineveh and Calah. Xenophon reports that Larissa was a strongly fortified city in this section, and this may be the Resen of Scripture.

RESEN re’ zən (רֶ֔סֶן, LXX Δασή; prob. Hebraized form of Assyrian reš eni meaning head of spring.

Most regard it as a place name designating an Assyrian city built by Asshur between Nineveh and Calah. No city of suitable prominence has been identified in this area. Some scholars proposed it be identified with the Assyrian village Resh-eni mentioned by Sennacherib in connection with his work to supply Nineveh with water, and situated NE of Nineveh. T. Jacobsen did not consider this identification very plausible (IDB, IV, 36). E. A. Speiser did not consider it a place name but regarded it as a parenthetic description of some impressive engineering or military construction—perhaps some kind of water works (Anchor Bible: Genesis [1964], 68).

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

(recen; Septuagint Dasen, Dasem):

1. The Name and Its Native Equivalent:

The Greek forms show that the Septuagint translators had "d", for "r", but the reading of the Massoretic Text is to be preferred. Resen--the last of the four cities mentioned in Ge 10:11,12 as having been founded by Nimrod (the King James Version by Asshur)--probably represents the Assyrian pronunciation of the place-name Res-eni, "fountainhead." The only town so named in the inscriptions is one of 18 mentioned by Sennacherib in the Bavian inscription as places from which he dug canals connecting with the river Khosr--in fact, it was one of the sources of Nineveh’s water supply. It probably lay too far North, however, to be the city here intended. Naturally the name "Resen" could exist in any place where there was a spring.

2. Possibly the Modern Selamiyeh:

As the Biblical text requires a site lying between Nineveh and Calah (Kouyunjik and Nimroud), it is generally thought to be represented by the ruins at Selamiyeh, about 3 miles North of the latter city. It is noteworthy that Xenophon (Anab. iii.4) mentions a "great" city called Larissa as occupying this position, and Bochart has suggested that it is the same place. He supposes that when the inhabitants were asked to what city the ruins belonged, they answered la Resen, "to Resen," which was reproduced by the Greeks as Larissa. Xenophon describes its walls as being 25 ft. wide, 100 ft. high, and 2 parasangs in circuit. Except for the stone plinth 20 ft. high, they were of brick. He speaks of a stone-built pyramid near the city--possibly the temple-tower at Nimroud.

See Calah; Nineveh, 10.