Ishmael settled in the land of Paran, a region lying between Canaan and the mountains of Sinai; and "God was with him, and he became a great archer" ( Genesis 21:9-21 ). He became a great desert chief, but of his history little is recorded. He was about ninety years of age when his father Abraham died, in connection with whose burial he once more for a moment reappears. On this occasion the two brothers met after being long separated. "Isaac with his hundreds of household slaves, Ishmael with his troops of wild retainers and half-savage allies, in all the state of a Bedouin prince, gathered before the cave of Machpelah, in the midst of the men of Heth, to pay the last duties to the 'father of the faithful,' would make a notable subject for an artist" ( Genesis 25:9 ). Of the after events of his life but little is known. He died at the age of one hundred and thirty-seven years, but where and when are unknown ( 25:17 ). He had twelve sons, who became the founders of so many Arab tribes or colonies, the Ishmaelites, who spread over the wide desert spaces of Northern Arabia from the Red Sea to the Euphrates ( Genesis 37:25 Genesis 37:27 Genesis 37:28 ; 39:1 ), "their hand against every man, and every man's hand against them."
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.
[N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
[H] indicates this entry was also found in Hitchcock's Bible Names
[S] indicates this entry was also found in Smith's Bible Dictionary
Bibliography InformationEaston, Matthew George. "Entry for Ishmael". "Easton's Bible Dictionary".