Gilead Name Meaning & Origin
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Hebrew name meaning "hill of testimony" or "hill of ascension."
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We named our son Gilead. Old Testament names appeal to us, but we didn't want one that was overly common. Gilead is both a place and used as a name in the Bible, and yet has not risen to common usage as have other places and names found in Scripture.
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Gilead is a region of ancient Palestine known for it's healing balm ("Balm of Gilead") and is reference in the Bible as well as found as a man's name in various genealogies. Jesus Christ is sometimes referred to as "the balm of Gilead."
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"There is a Balm in Gilead"--Negro Spiritual;
Gilead is also the title of the 2004 award-winning novel (2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award) by American writer Marilynne Robinson.
In Stephen King's Dark Tower novels, the protagonist, Roland Deschain, hails from a kingdom called Gilead, which was destroyed by John Farson.
In Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Raven," the speaker asks the spectral bird: "Is there balm in Gilead? Tell me truly I implore."
Hebrew Bible repeatedly mentions a "balm in Gilead" or "balm of Gilead," references and symbolism which have appeared repeatedly in Western culture, see Balsam of Mecca.
In Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Cycle, Gil'ead is a location through which Eragon travels.
I can't believe The Handmaid's Tale hasn't been mentioned! I think that Gilead is borderline unusable because of the book and the TV series, in which Gilead is a horribly repressive and awful place to be.