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Lech Lecha

  
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 14:1
14:1 Fourth Reading
It was around this time that Amraphel king of Shinar, Ariokh king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of Goyim
Vayehi bimey Amrafel melech-Shin'ar Ari'och melech Elasar Kedarla'omer melech Eylam veTid'al melech Goyim.



Commentary:

Amraphel
  Talmudic sources identify him with Nimrod (Genesis 10:8; cf. Targum Yonathan; Eruvin 53a; Rashi). Some identify him with the famed Hammurabi, who in ancient writings is referred to as Ammurapi. This may have occurred at the beginning of his reign, before he had built his famed empire, and hence, the leading king is seen as Chedorlaomer (Genesis 14:4,5,9). However, since he later became famous, the age is identified with him.

Shinar
  This is identified with Sumer. The Targum Yonathan renders it as Pontus (see note on Genesis 10:10). In some manuscripts, however, the reading is Bogtos, denoting Baghdad.

Elam
  A city-state in the area of Shushan. See note on Genesis 10:22.

Goyim
  Literally 'nations' or 'hordes' (see Targum). This might indicate that he was the king over a number of nations, or perhaps, a barbaric king. Others, interpret Goyim as a place name (Rashi). It may be identified with Gutium in Kurdistan. See Joshua 12:23.

It was around this time...
  (Rabenu Meyuchas). Literally, 'It was in the days of Amraphel,' or 'It was in the days when Amraphel....'

Ariokh
  A king of Larsa by the name of Eriaku is found in ancient writings. It was later also a popular name (cf. Daniel 2:14).

Ellasar
  This is the same as Larsa, a city just south of Erekh, and 100 miles south of Babylon. It was a major power center in ancient times. See note on Genesis 10:10.

Chedorlaomer
  K'darla'omer in Hebrew. Some sources indicate that he was originally one of Amraphel's generals, who rebelled and established an independent kingdom (Sefer HaYashar). The name itself is a Hebraicized form of Kudur (servant of) and Lagamar, the name of an Elamite deity.

Tidal
  He can be identified with the Tudghala or Tudhaliya of cuniform texts, who was king of the Northern Kurdish or Hittite nations.





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