Aner, Eshkol, and Mamre

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ANER, ESHKOL, AND MAMRE

ANER, ESHKOL, AND MAMRE (Heb. עָנֵר, אֶשְׁכֹּל, וּמַמְרֵא), three Amorite brothers, allies of Abraham (Gen. 14:13). They participated in Abraham's campaign against *Chedorlaomer, king of Elam, and his confederates who had waged battle against Sodom and other cities and had captured Lot and his family. After the victory Abraham refused any share in the spoils, but declared that Aner, Eshkol, and Mamre should receive theirs (Gen. 14:24). The Genesis Apocryphon (22:6; Aner is called there ענרם) explicitly accords the three brothers an active role in the battle with these kings.

The names Eshkol and Mamre are associated with Hebron. A wadi in the vicinity of the city is named Eshkol (Num. 13:23–24; 32:9; Deut. 1:24); and the particular spot near Hebron where Abram pitched his tent is called "the terebinths of Mamre" (Gen. 13:18; 14:13; 18:1). In Genesis 23:19 (cf. 35:27) Mamre is spoken of loosely as a former name of Hebron as a whole. According to B. Mazar, the ancient name of Hebron, Kiriath-Arba, implies that the city was a member of four neighboring confederated settlements in which the families of Mamre, Eshkol, and Aner resided, around the citadel of Hebron. However, these locations have not yet been identified archaeologically.

bibliography:

Maisler (Mazar), in: Sefer Dinaburg (1949), 316–20; idem, in: jpos, 16 (1936), 152 ff.; Albright, in: jsor, 10 (1929), 231–69; Benzinger, in: bzaw, 41 (1925), 21–27; Boehl, in: zaw, 36 (1916), 65–73.