dark-skinned, the second son of Ishmael ( Genesis 25:13 ).
It is the name for the nomadic tribes of Arabs, the Bedouins generally ( Isaiah 21:16 ; 42:11 ; 60:7 ; Jeremiah 2:10 ; Ezekiel 27:21 ), who dwelt in the north-west of Arabia. They lived in black hair-tents (Cant 1:5 ). To "dwell in the tents of Kedar" was to be cut off from the worship of the true God ( Psalms 120:5 ). The Kedarites suffered at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar ( Jeremiah 49:28 Jeremiah 49:29 ).
(dark-skinned ), the second in order of the sons of Ishmael, ( Genesis 25:13 ; 1 Chronicles 1:29 ) and the name of a great tribe of Arabs settled on the northwest of the peninsula and on the confines of Palestine. The "glory of Kedar" is recorded by the prophet Isaiah, ( Isaiah 21:13-17 ) in the burden upon Arabia; and its importance may also be inferred from the "princes of Kedar" mentioned by Ezekiel, ( Ezekiel 27:21 ) as well as the pastoral character of the tribe. They appear also to have been, like the wandering tribes of the present day, "archers" and "mighty men." ( Isaiah 21:17 ) comp. Psal 120:5 That they also settled in villages or towns we find from Isaiah. ( Isaiah 42:11 ) The tribe seems to have been one of the most conspicuous of all the Ishmaelite tribes, and hence the rabbins call the Arabians universally by this name.
ke'-dar (qedhar; Kedar):
Second in order of the sons of Ishmael (Genesis 25:13 parallel 1 Chronicles 1:29). The name occurs as typical of a distant eastern country in opposition to the lands of the Mediterranean (Jeremiah 2:10). The author of Second Isa introduces this tribe in company with Nebaioth, and both are represented as owners of flocks (Isaiah 60:7). Evidence of their nomadic habits appears in Jeremiah 49:28,29, where they are classed among the Bene-Qedhem, and mention is made of their flocks, camels, tents, curtains and furniture. They are spoken of (Isaiah 42:11) as dwelling in chatserim ("villages"), from which it would appear that they were a somewhat settled tribe, corresponding to the Arabic chadariya or "town-dwellers," as distinct from wabariya or "nomads." Ezekiel (27:21) gives another hint of their pastoral nature where, in his detailed picture of the wealth of Tyre, Kedar and Arabia provide the Tyrians with lambs, rams and goats. The fame of the tribe is further reflected in Isaiah 21:16,17 (the only allusion to their might in war), and in the figurative references to their tents (Psalms 120:5; Song of Solomon 1:5). In this last passage where the tents are made symbolic of dark beauty, the word qadhar ("to be black") may have been in the writer's mind.
The settlements of Kedar were probably in the Northwest of Arabia, not far from the borders of Palestine. Assyrian inscriptions have thrown light upon the history of the tribe. There Kedar is mentioned along with the Arabs and Nebaioth, which decides its identity with Kedar of the Old Testament, and there is found also an account of the conflicts between the tribe and King Assurbanipal (see Margoliouth in HDB).
Of the Ishmaelite tribes, Kedar must have been one of the most important, and thus in later times the name came to be applied to all the wild tribes of the desert. It is through Kedar (Arabic, keidar) that Muslim genealogists trace the descent of Mohammed from Ishmael.
A. S. Fulton
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