And they called the name of the city Dan
The name of their tribe, and to show that though they were at the furthest part of the land northward, and at such a distance from their tribe, which lay to the southwest, yet they belonged to it:
after the name of Dan their father, who was born unto Israel;
one of the twelve sons of Jacob or Israel:
however, the name of the city was Laish at first;
which signifies a "lion", and might be so called from its being infested with lions, which might come from the mountain of Lebanon, near to which it was, and whither Dan, as a lion's whelp, leaped, ( Deuteronomy 33:22 ) and now the prophecy had its accomplishment. This place was also called Leshem, ( Joshua 19:47 ) and it is remarkable that Leshem is the name of the precious stone in the high priest's breastplate, on which the name of Dan was engraved, which was done many years before this city fell into the hands of the Danites, though that might portend it.