AARON

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AARON
 
 Jaredite PN		1.  Jaredite son/descendant of HETH, who dwelt in captivity (Ether
 				1:15, 10:31)
 Lehite PN		2.  Nephite son of MOSIAH II in 1st century B.C. (Mosiah 27:8–10,
 				32–37, 28:1–9, Alma 17:1–3, 35:14)
 			3.  Lamanite king in 4th century A.D. (Mormon 2:9, 3:4, Moroni 9:17)
 Lehite GN		4.  City of, near AMMONIHAH, NEPHIHAH, and MORONI (Alma
 				8:13–14, 50:14)
 
 AARON is identical to the KJV PN = Hebrew ʾahărōn (Numbers 8:2–26, Deuteronomy 32:50, Micah 6:4) = LXX Greek aarōn.  However, none of the Book of Mormon
 uses refer to Moses’ brother.  The  etymology of biblical AARON remains obscure, with several suggestions having been made, none of which have proven to be 
widely acceptable.  A few of these suggestions follow:
 
 According to Ran Zadok, aside from the -ōn termination typical of name-formation,1 the Hebrew etymology is based on ʾhr, which is to *ʾār (from root ʾWR or ʾYR 
“give light”)2 as -rhm (of ʾAbrāhām)  is to rām, thus possibly meaning something like “Light-giver.”
 
 Apparently basing their etymology on the Arabic PN Harun “Aaron,” Reynolds & Sjodahl offer “A Mountain of Strength” from Arabic harûn “mountainous,”3  as in
 Harun al-Rašid.  A Hebrew folk- etymology with the same meaning may also have existed, but we have no evidence of it.
 
 Koehler & Baumgartner cited Ignaz Hösl’s suggestion that it derived from Egyptian ʿЗ-rn “Great-is-the-name (of God, or of Pharaoh),”4 but William F. Albright 
doubted it could be shown to be  Egyptian,5 and John Gee argues that such a correspondence is impossible since (1) there is no ע to א shift in Egyptian until 
Ptolemaic times, and (2) Coptic ran, “name,” has a short -a- vowel.   Moreover, the -h- in ʾahărōn is absent from the crucial portion of the Egyptian examples such 
as ʿЗ-Ḥr “Horus-is-great” (= Phoenician ʿḥr), Ḥr-ʿЗ, ʿImn-ʿЗ, Mwt-ʿЗ, Зst-tЗ-ʿЗ, Зs(t)-ʿЗ(t) [=  Phoenician ʾsʿʾ], Ptḥ-ʿЗ,6 etc.
 
 Another very unlikely possibility adds a prothetic -a-, to a problematic instance of Aramaic Ḥrwn on a 26th Dynasty Serapeum grave stele as a transliteration of
 Egyptian Ḥr-wn “Horus-exists,”7  which improperly suggests that -h- might derive from -ḥ-.
 See COMRON, PAHORON/PAHORAN, PHARAOH.
 
 Bibliography
 
 Albright, William F., Yahweh and the Gods of Canaan: A Historical Analysis of Two
 Contrasting Faiths. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1968.  Pagination differs from London edition.  YGC
 
 Hösl, Ignaz.  “Zur orientalistiche Namenskunde: Maria–Moses–Aaron: Ein
 philologische Studie,”in Serta Monacensia für F. Babinger, 80–85.  Leiden: Brill, 1952.
 
 Koehler, Ludwig, and Walter Baumgartner, The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old
 Testament, 5 vols., revised by W. Baumgartner & Johann J. Stamm.  Leiden: Brill, 1994.  HALOT
 
 Muchiki, Yoshiyuki. Egyptian Proper Names and Loanwords in North-West Semitic, SBL
 	Dissertation Series 173.  Atlanta: SBL, 1999.
 
 Reynolds, George, and Janne M. Sjodahl, Commentary on the Book of Mormon, 7 vols.,
 	P. C. Reynolds, ed.  SLC: Deseret Book, 1955-1961.  CBM
 
 Segal, J. B.  The Aramaic Texts from North Saqqâra with Some Fragments in Phoenician.
 	London: Egypt Exploration Society, 1983.
 
 Tvedtnes, John A.  “What’s in a Name?  A Look at the Book of Mormon Onomasticon.”
 	FARMS Review of Books 8/2 (1996):34–42 .
 
 Zadok, Ran.  The Pre-Hellenistic Israelite Anthroponymy and Prosopography, OLA 28.
 	Louvain: Peeters, 1988.
 
 											RFS