Bible Names A-G : Cainan


Cainan in Wikipedia can refer to either: A variant of the name Kenan in the generations of Adam, the lists of antediluvian patriarchs given in the Torah; Cainan, the son of the Arpachshad mentioned in most manuscripts of the Gospel of Luke 3:36. This reference to Cainan is present in the Septuagint and Samaritan versions of the Book of Genesis, as well as in the Book of Jubilees; however, the early Christian apologists Irenaeus and Eusebius believed it to be an error, as do many modern interpreters, mainly on the basis of his omission from the Masoretic (Hebrew) version. According to the Book of Jubilees, Cainan, taught the art of writing by his father, found carved on the rocks by former generations an inscription preserving the science of astrology as taught by the rebel angels, the Watchers, who descended from heaven in the days of Jared and led mankind away from God. The Sefer ha-Yashar describes Cainan, the possessor of great astrological wisdom, which had been inscribed on tables of stone, as the son of Seth and not of Arpachshad; i.e., the antediluvian Kenan. In The Patriarchal Age: or, the History and Religion of Mankind (1854), George Smith writes[1]: "It is remarkable that, notwithstanding the omission of the name of Cainan from the Hebrew text, and the consequent general rejection of him by historians, there are more traditions preserved of him than of his son Salah. 'The Alexandrine Chronicle derives the Samaritans from Cainan*; Eustachius Antiochenus, the Saggodians; George Syncellus, the Gaspheni; Epiphanius the Cajani. Besides the particulars already mentioned, it is said Cainan was the first after the flood who invented astronomy, and that his sons made a god of him, and worshiped his image after his death. The founding of the city of Harran in Mesopotamia is also attributed to him; which, it is pretended, is so called from a son he had of that name.' -Anc. Univ. Hist., vol. i, p. 96, note." (* What the Latin Alexandrine Chronicle actually says is that "those who live east of the Sarmatians" were derived from Cainan)