Bible Names A-G
Ashkenaz in Wikipedia
In the Bible, Ashkenaz is Gomer's first son, brother of
Riphath and Togarmah (Gen. 10:3, 1 Chronicles 1:6), thereby
a Japhetic descendant of Noah. A kingdom of Ashkenaz is
called together with Ararat and Minni against Babylon (Jer.
There is a theory that biblical Askhenaz (אשכנז) arose from
Ashkūz (אשכוז) (= the Scythians) by an old misread of נ
(nun) for ו (vav). Ashkenaz is also regarded as the father
of the Scythians, Sarmatians, and other Indo-Aryans, due
largely to the use of the name "Ashkuz" (Saka) for the
Scythians in Assyrian Akkadian inscriptions. It may also
refer to the Phrygians, who according to Homer's Iliad
settled around Lake Ascania.
In rabbinic literature Ashkenaz is believed to be the
ancestor of the Germanic, Scandinavian and Slavic peoples,
probably due to the similarity of the names Gomer and
German, and the similarity of Ashkenaz to the name of Ask,
the first human male in Norse mythology, or Aschanes
(Askanius), mythological progenitor of the Saxons (see also:
Oisc of Kent). For this reason, Ashkenaz is the Medieval
Hebrew name for Germany.
Ashkenazi Jews, also known as Ashkenazic Jews or Ashkenazim
(Standard Hebrew: sing. אַשְׁכֲּנָזִי, pronounced [ˌaʃkəˈnazi], pl.
אַשְׁכֲּנָזִים [ˌaʃkəˈnazim] (this 'z' is pronounced as in English
"zip", not German-fashion as "ts"); also יְהוּדֵי אַשְׁכֲּנָז Yehudei
Ashkenaz, "the Jews of Ashkenaz"), are descended from the
medieval Jewish communities of the Rhineland.