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Answering The Atheist
January 29, 2006 / Volume 6, Issue 5

THE ATHEIST'S COMPLAINT:
Who was Anah?
1) Genesis 36:2, 14 says the daughter of Zibeon,
2) Genesis 36:20 and 1 Chronicles 1:38 say the brother of Zibeon, and
3) Genesis 36:24 and 1 Chronicles 1:40 say the son of Zibeon.
Is there a contradiction?

RESPONSE:
There are three different individuals called Anah, one female and two male, from two entirely different families mentioned in Genesis 36.

The first, mentioned in Genesis 36:2, 14, is Anah, the mother of Aholibamah, the wife of Esau. This woman, Anah, is the daughter of Zibeon the Hivite.

The second, mentioned in Genesis 36:20 and also in 1 Chronicles 1:38, is Anah, the son of Seir the Horite. He is the brother of Zibeon (different man than mentioned above), who is also a son of Seir the Horite.

The third, mentioned in Genesis 36:24-25 and also in 1 Chronicles 1:40-41, is Anah, the son of Zibeon, and nephew of the previously mentioned Anah. It is no contradiction for an individual to be given the same name as his father's brother, which is the case here.

The last Anah is said to have two children, a son named Dishon (Genesis 36:25; 1 Chronicles 1:41), and a daughter named Aholibamah (Genesis 36:25).

A woman by the name of Aholibamah is mentioned both in Genesis 36:2 and 36:25. Note that though these women share the same name, they are not the same person. The first is Aholibamah, daughter of Anah (female), daughter of Zibeon the Hivite. She was married to Esau. The latter is Aholibamah, daughter of Anah (male), son of Zibeon, son of Seir the Horite. Though the names in the two families are similar, one is among the family of the Hivites, the other among the family or the Horites.

There is no contradiction.

This article is a response to Skeptic's Annotated Bible