Shalom, everyone! The following is a diagram of the generations of Noah (Noach), from his son Shem to his 8th great-grandson Terah, based upon the accounts of the Book of Genesis (Bereshith) in the Tanakh, the Book of Jasher, and the Book of Jubilees. Shem was the actually the second son of Noah, though he is mentioned first in the Book of Genesis. The descendants of Shem also known as “Shemites,” “Semites” or “Semitic” in the English language. Please click twice on the diagram to expand to full size:
The Generations of Noah: From Shem to Abraham
Shem is the progenitor of the Afro-Asiatic peoples originally known collectively as the Sumerians, but later as “Shemites” or “Semites.” From the Sumerians were descended the ancient Persians (Elam), the Assyrians (Asshur), the Arameans (Aram), the Chaldeans and Hebrews (Arpachshad), all of whom originated in Mesopotamia. Shem‘s descendants continued to settle in Mesopotamia but later migrated throughout the region known today as the “Middle East” (Northeast Africa including the Levant, southern Iran, and the Arabian Peninsula), South Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa. Shemites frequently intermarried with Hamites as they were always in close proximity to each other.
Shem married Sedeqetelebab, daughter of Eliakim, and had issue:
- Five sons Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram; and
- At least one daughter whose name is unknown. This daughter later married Madai, son of Japheth, and together they became the progenitors of the Medes (Jubilees 10:35-36).
According to Josephus, Shem and his descendants inhabited a territory from the Euphrates River in present-day Syria to the lands with a coastline on the Indian Ocean. The territory allotted to Shem includes Persia, Iraq, Syria, Israel, Jordan, the Arabian Peninsula, the India subcontinent and sub-Saharan Africa all the way to the Cape Peninsula in South Africa. Much of sub-Saharan Africa would be uninhabited until after successive migrations of both Shemites and Hamites fleeing capture from the northern invading superpowers (Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans).
|Son of Shem||Descendants|
|Elam||Elam was the progenitor of the Elamites, ancestors of the Persians. Elam had issue:
Though the Persians were originally a Shemitic people, modern Persians today are largely a fusion of Japhetic and Shemitic peoples as their modern language, Farsi, is classified as an Indo-European language.
|Asshur||Asshur established the city of Nineveh and was the progenitor of the Assyrians. Asshur had issue:
|Arpachshad||Arpachshad was the ancestor of the Chaldeans. Arpachshad married Rasueja daughter of Shushan, son of Elam (Jubilees 8:1), and had issue:
|Lud||Lud (Ludim), also called “Lydians” by the Greeks, settled in western Anatolia (Turkey) and remained an independent people until they were conquered by the Persians, then the Greeks and finally the Romans. Lud had issue:
|Aram||Aram was the progenitor of the Aramites/Arameans, whom the Greeks called Syrians. Aram had issue:
|Unnamed Daughter||Married Madai, son of Japheth, and together they became the progenitors of the Medes (Jubilees 10:35-36).|