HELAM

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Lehite PN 1. Convert of ALMA I in the land of LEHI-NEPHI, ca. 145 BC (Mosiah 18:12, 13, 14)
Lehite GN 2. City and land founded by followers of ALMA I, 2nd c. BC (Mosiah 23:19, 20 (x2), 25 (x2), 26, 29, 35, 37, 38, 39; 27:16; Alma 24:1)

Etymology

This name appears in 2 Samuel 10:16 & 17 as a GN. The etymology is not certain even in HEBREW.

There is a root in HEBREW, ḥlm, that can mean “healthy, to become strong, to be strong,” (HAL and DNWSI), though the root also means “dream, to dream.” The form remains obscure. Perhaps the name could mean “The strong one [of God].”

Other possible roots include hlm, ḥll, and hll. The latter, “to praise” (the root behind “Halleluia”) is very promising as an etymology and could be a hypocoristicon for something like “[God is] their praise” from *hall, “praise,” and -am, 3m.p. possive suffix. However, if HELAM is related etymologically to HELAMAN, then the proposed derivation from hll would not work. hlm can mean “to strike, beat,” but does not seem too appropriate for HELAM. ḫll, “to profane, defile,” also seems inappropriate.

Less likely as a PN is the suggestion that it means “Their host/army,” from ḥyl. Verda Bryant, “The Book of Mormon, Those Queer Names,” p. 19, has suggested “A place of plenty,” but without etymology.

Cf. Book of Mormon HELAMAN, HELEM

Variants

Helaman, Helam, Helim, Helem

Deseret Alphabet: 𐐐𐐀𐐢𐐊𐐣 (hiːlʌm)

Notes


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