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ENOSH (Heb. אֱנוֹשׁ; "man, mankind"), eldest son of *Seth and the father of Kenan (Gen. 4:26; 5:6, 9; i Chron. 1:1–2). He lived 905 years (Gen. 5:11). It was in his day that the name yhwh was first invoked (ibid. 4:26).

In the Aggadah

The generation of Enosh is the "counsel of the ungodly" of Ps. 1:1. Enosh and his contemporaries studied and practiced the arts of divination and control of heavenly forces, thereby making way for the generation of the flood (Zohar 1:56a), and were also the first to practice idolatry (Sif. Deut. 43; see also Shab. 118b). Four revolutions in nature occurred during the days of Enosh: the mountains became barren; corpses began to putrefy; the faces of men became apelike (rather than Godlike); and demons lost their fear of men (Gen. R. 23:6).


Cassuto, in: em, 1 (1965), 450; E.A. Speiser, Genesis (1964), 37–38. in the aggadah: I. Ḥasida, Ishei ha-Tanakh (1964), 73.