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Adam and Eve by Lucas Cranach the Elder, shows Eve giving Adam the fruit
The creation of Eve, from the Sistine Chapel ceiling by Michelangelo

Eve (Hebrew: חַוָּה, Ḥavvāh, Arabic:حواء) was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the Old Testament and the Quran, the first woman and the second person created by God, and an important figure in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Her husband was Adam, from whose rib God created her to be his companion. She succumbs to the serpent's temptation via the suggestion that to eat the forbidden fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil would improve on the way God had made her, and that she would not die, and she, believing the lie of the Serpent rather than the earlier instruction from God, shares the fruit with Adam. As a result, the first humans are expelled from the Garden of Eden and are cursed.


Name and origin

According to the Bible, Eve (Hebrew: חַוָּה, Ḥavvāh; Arabic: حواء‎, Hawwa; Ge'ez: ሕይዋን Hiywan; "living one" or "source of life", from Hebrew ḥawwâ, "living", "life", from ḥāyâ, "to live"; ultimately from the Semitic root ḥyw[1]) is Adam's wife. Derived from the words chavah, meaning "to breathe" and chayah, meaning "to live", her name occurs only five times in the Bible. Historically the name appears to have been derived from that of the Hurrian Goddess "Kheba", who was shown in the Amarna Letters to be worshipped in Jerusalem during the Late Bronze Age. It has been suggested that the name Kheba may derive from Kubau, a woman who reigned as the first "king" of the Third Dynasty of Kish[2][3] Another name of Asherah in the first millennium BCE was Chawat, Hawah in Hebrew (Eve in English).

Creation of Eve
Marble relief by Lorenzo Maitani on the Orvieto Cathedral, Italy

Eve is the first woman mentioned in the Bible. Here it was Adam who gave her the name Eve. Eve lived with Adam in the Garden of Eden during the time Adam was described as having walked with God. Eventually, however, with the Fall, the pair were removed from the garden because she was encouraged by a serpent to take a fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and with the Temptation led Adam to eat of the Forbidden Fruit.

In the Tyndale translation Eve is the name given to the beasts by Adam, his wife is called Heua.

Eve is not a saint's name, but the traditional name day of Adam and Eve, the first man and woman, has been celebrated on December 24 since the Middle Ages in many European countries, e.g. Germany, the Netherlands, Hungary, Scandinavia, Estonia.

Creation of Eve

Eve was created in the Garden of Eden to be the wife of Adam. God decides that "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a companion fit for him." and in Genesis 2:21–22 it states

"And God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man"

After her creation, Adam names his companion Woman, "because she was taken out of Man."[4] "Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh."

Eve is also mentioned in the Book of Tobit (viii, 8; Sept., viii, 6) where it is simply affirmed that she was given to Adam for a helper.

An alternate tradition, originating in a Jewish book called The Alphabet of Ben-Sira which entered Europe from the East in the 6th century A.D suggests that Lilith, not Eve, was Adam's first wife, created at the same time and from the same dust. The tradition goes that Lilith, claiming to be created equal, refused to sleep or serve "under him" (Adam). When Adam tried to force her into the "inferior" position, she flew away from Eden into the air, where she copulated with demons, conceiving hundreds more each day. God sent three angels after her, who threatened to kill her brood if she refused to return to Adam. But she did refuse. So God made Eve from Adam's rib to be his "second wife."

Controversy regarding the "rib" continues to the present day, regarding the Sumerian and the original Hebrew words for rib. The common translation, for example, that of the King James Version, is that אַחַת מִצַּלְעֹתָיו means "one of his ribs". The contrary position is that the term צלע ṣelaʿ, occurring forty-one times in the Tanakh, is most often translated as "side" in general.[7]. "Rib" is, however, the etymologically primary meaning of the term, which is from a root ṣ-l-ʿ, "bend", cognate to Assyrian ṣêlu "rib".[8] Also God took "one" ( ʾeḫad) of Adam's ṣelaʿ, suggesting an individual rib. The Septuagint has μίαν τῶν πλευρῶν αὐτοῦ, with ἡ πλευρά choosing a Greek term that like the Hebrew ṣelaʿ may mean either "rib", or, in the plural, "side [of a man or animal]" in general. The specification "one of the πλευρά" thus closely imitates the Hebrew text. The Aramaic form of the word is עלע ʿalaʿ, which appears, also in the meaning "rib", in Daniel 7:5.

An old story of the rib is told by Rabbi Joshua:

"God deliberated from what member He would create woman, and He reasoned with Himself thus: I must not create her from Adam's head, for she would be a proud person, and hold her head high. If I create her from the eye, then she will wish to pry into all things; if from the ear, she will wish to hear all things; if from the mouth, she will talk much; if from the heart, she will envy people; if from the hand, she will desire to take all things; if from the feet, she will be a gadabout. Therefore I will create her from the member which is hid, that is the rib, which is not even seen when man is naked."[9]
Biblia Pauperum illustration of Eve and the serpent

Anatomically, men and women have the same number of ribs - 24. When this fact was noted by the Flemish anatomist Vesalius in 1524 it touched off a wave of controversy, as it seemed to contradict Genesis 2:21.

Some hold[citation needed] that the origin of this motif is the Sumerian myth in which the goddess Ninhursag created a beautiful garden full of lush vegetation and fruit trees, called Edinu, in Dilmun, the Sumerian earthly Paradise, a place which the Sumerians believed to exist to the east of their own land, beyond the sea. Ninhursag charged Enki, her lover and husband, with controlling the wild animals and tending the garden, but Enki became curious about the garden and his assistant, Adapa, selected seven plants and offered them to Enki, who ate them. (In other versions of the story he seduced in turn seven generations of the offspring of his divine marriage with Ninhursag). This enraged Ninhursag, and she caused Enki to fall ill. Enki felt pain in his rib, which is a pun in Sumerian, as the word "ti" means both "rib" and "life". The other gods persuaded Ninhursag to relent. Ninhursag then created a new goddess named Ninti, (a name made up of "Nin", or "lady", plus "ti", and which can be translated as both Lady of Living and Lady of the Rib), to cure Enki. Ninhursag is known as mother of all living creatures, and thus holds the same position in the story as does Eve. The story has a clear parallel with Eve's creation from Adam's rib[citation needed], but given that the pun with rib is present only in Sumerian, linguistic criticism places the Sumerian account as the more ancient.[citation needed]

Temptation, fall, and expulsion from the garden

Adam, Eve, and the (female) serpent at the entrance to Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France. The portrayal of the image of the serpent as a mirror of Eve was common in earlier iconography as a result of the identification of women as the source of human original sin

The serpent tells the woman that she will not die if she eats the fruit of the tree: "When you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."[5] So the woman eats, and gives to the man who also eats. "Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons." The man and woman hide themselves from God, the man blaming the woman for giving him the fruit, and the woman blaming the serpent. God curses the serpent, "upon your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life;" the woman he punishes with pain in childbirth, and with subordination to man: "your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you;" and Adam[6] he punishes with a life of toil: "In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground." The man names his wife Eve,[7] "because she was the mother of all living."

"Behold," says God, "the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil." God expels the couple from Eden, "lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever;" the gate of Eden is sealed by cherubim and a flaming sword "to guard the way to the tree of life."

Eve as mother of humanity

According to the Bible, for her share in the transgression, Eve (and womankind after her) is sentenced to a life of sorrow and travail in childbirth, and to be under the power of her husband. Early anti-feminists argued that "sex education" for women was a violation of God's curse and should be resisted.[citation needed] While believers accept all subsequent humans have Eve as an ancestor, she is believed to be unique in that although all people after her were physically created from women, Eve herself was created from a man. Adam and Eve have two sons, Cain and Abel, the first a tiller of the ground, the second a keeper of sheep.[8] After the death of Abel, Eve gives birth to a third son, Seth, from which Noah (and thus the whole of modern humanity) is descended. According to the Bible, Eve states "God hath given me [literally, "put" or "appointed"] another seed, for Abel whom Cain slew" (Genesis 4:25).

Eve in other traditions

Eve in Judaism

Even in ancient times, the presence of two distinct accounts was noted, and regarded with some curiosity. The first account says male and female [God] created them (Genesis 1:27), which has been assumed by critical scholars to imply simultaneous creation, whereas the second account states that God created Eve from Adam's rib because Adam was lonely (Genesis 2:18 ff.). Thus to resolve this apparent discrepancy, mediaeval rabbis suggested that Eve and the woman of the first account were two separate individuals.

Preserved in the Midrash, and the mediaeval Alphabet of Ben Sira, this rabbinic tradition held that the first woman refused to take the submissive position to Adam in sex, and eventually fled from him, consequently leaving him lonely. This first woman was identified in the Midrash as Lilith, a figure elsewhere described as a night demon.

The word liyliyth can also mean "screech owl", as it is translated in the King James Version of Isaiah 34:14, although some scholars take this to be a reference to the same demonic entity as mentioned in the Talmud.

In the Talmud, Adam is said to have separated from Eve for 130 years, during which time his ejaculations gave rise to "ghouls, and demons." Elsewhere in the Talmud, Lilith is identified as the mother of these creatures. The demons were said to prey on newborn males before they had been circumcised, and so a tradition arose in which a protective amulet was placed around the neck of newborns. Traditions in the Midrash concerning Lilith, and her sexual appetite, have been compared to Sumerian mythology concerning the demon ki-sikil-lil-la-ke, by scholars who postulate an intermediate Akkadian folk etymology interpreting the lil-la-ke portion of the name as a corruption of lîlîtu, literally meaning female night demon.

The Alphabet of Ben Sira Midrash goes even further and identifies a third wife, created after Lilith deserted Adam, but before Eve. This unnamed wife was purportedly made in the same way as Adam, from the "dust of the earth", but the sight of her being created proved too much for Adam to take and he refused to go near her. It is also said that she was created from nothing at all, and that God created into being a skeleton, then organs, and then flesh. The Midrash tells that Adam saw her as "full of blood and secretions," suggesting that he witnessed her creation and was horrified at seeing a body from the inside out. Ben Sira does not record this wife's fate. She was never named, and it assumed that she was allowed to leave the Garden a perpetual virgin, or was ultimately destroyed by God in favor of Eve, who was created when Adam was asleep and oblivious. It should be noted here, that both Lilith and the Second Wife are free from any curse of the Tree of Knowledge, as they left long before the event occurred.

Genesis does not tell for how long Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, but the Book of Jubilees states that they were removed from the garden on the new moon of the fourth month of the 8th year after creation (Jubilees 3:33); other Jewish sources assert that it was less than a day. Shortly after their expulsion, Eve brought forth her first-born child, and thereafter their second — Cain and Abel, respectively.

Another Jewish tradition---also used to explain "male and female He created them" line, is that God originally created Adam as a hermaphrodite[Midrash Rabbah - Genesis VIII:1], and in this way was bodily and spiritually male and female. He later decided that "it is not good for [Adam] to be alone," and created the separate beings of Adam and Eve, thus creating the idea of two people joining together to achieve a union of the two separate spirits.

Only three of Adam's children (Cain, Abel, and Seth) are explicitly named in Genesis, although it does state that there were other sons and daughters as well (Genesis 5:4). In Jubilees, two daughters are named - Azûrâ being the first, and Awân, who was born after Seth, Cain, Abel, nine other sons, and Azûrâ. Jubilees goes on to state that Cain later married Awân and Seth married Azûrâ, thus, accounting for their descendants. However, according to Genesis Rabba and other later sources, either Cain had a twin sister, and Abel had two twin sisters, or Cain had a twin sister named Lebuda, and Abel a twin sister named Qelimath. In the Conflict of Adam and Eve with Satan, Cain's twin sister is named Luluwa, and Abel's twin sister is named Aklia.

Other pseudepigrapha give further details of their life outside of Eden, in particular, the Life of Adam and Eve (also known as the Apocalypse of Moses) consists entirely of a description of their life outside Eden. Generally in Judaism Eve's sin was used as an example of what can happen to women who stray from their childbearing duties.

According to traditional Jewish belief, Eve is buried in the Cave of Machpelah, in Hebron.

Eve in Christianity

In Christian tradition Eve is often used as the exemplar of sexual temptation, a tendency not found in Judaism where Lilith plays that role. Furthermore, the serpent that tempted Eve was interpreted within most Christian traditions to have been Satan, although there is no mention of this identification in the Torah. In fact, Genesis does not even hint at any of these readings, although it is found in some of the Jewish apocrypha but their adoption by many Christians has marked the religion's radical break from its Judaic parent. Writings dealing with this subject are extant in Greek, Latin, Slavonic, Syriac, Armenian and Arabic. They go back undoubtedly to a Jewish basis, but in some of the forms in which they appear at present they are Christianized throughout. The oldest and for the most part Jewish portion of this literature is said Primary Adam Literature (see Life of Adam and Eve). Before we discuss this Primary Adam Literature we shall mention other members of this literature, which, though derivable ultimately from Jewish sources, are Christian in their present form; The Book of Adam and Eve, also called the Conflict of Adam and Eve with Satan[9] and a Syriac work entitled Cave of Treasures[10]. This work has close affinities to the Conflict, but is said by Dillmann to be more original.

Drawing upon the statement in II Cor., xi, 3, where reference is made to her seduction by the serpent, and in I Tim., ii, 13, where the Apostle enjoins submission and silence upon women, arguing that "Adam was first formed; then Eve. And Adam was not seduced, but the woman being seduced, was in the transgression", because Eve had tempted Adam to eat of the fatal fruit, some early Fathers of the Church held her and all subsequent women to be the first sinners, and especially responsible for the Fall because of the sin of Eve. She was also called "the lance of the demon", "the road of iniquity" "the sting of the scorpion", "a daughter of falsehood, the sentinel of Hell", "the enemy of peace" and "of the wild beast, the most dangerous." "You are the devil's gateway," Tertullian told his female listeners in the early 2nd century, and went on to explain that all women were responsible for the death of Christ: "On account of your desert _ that is, death - even the Son of God had to die."[11] In this way Eve is equated with the Greco-Roman myth of Pandora who was responsible for bringing evil into the world.

Saint Augustine, according to Elaine Pagels, used the sin of Eve to justify his idiosyncratic view of humanity as permanently scarred by the Fall, which led to the Catholic doctrine of Original sin.

In 1486 the Renaissance Dominicans Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger took this further as one of their justifications in the Malleus Maleficarum ("Hammer of the Witches") a central text in three centuries of persecution of "witches". Such "Eve bashing" is much more common in Christianity than in Judaism or Islam, though major differences in women status does not seem to have been the result. This is often balanced by the typology of the Madonna, much as "Old Adam" is balanced by Christ - this is even the case in the "Mallus" whose authors were capable of writings things such as "Justly we may say with Cato of Utica: If the world could be rid of women, we should not be without God in our intercourse. For truly, without the wickedness of women, to say nothing of witchcraft, the world would still remain proof against innumerable dangers" but were perhaps aware that (tragically) a large percentage of those accusing witches were female as well, and feared losing their support: "There are also others who bring forward yet other reasons, of which preachers should be very careful how they make use. For it is true that in the Old Testament the Scriptures have much that is evil to say about women, and this because of the first temptress, Eve, and her imitators; yet afterwards in the New Testament we find a change of name, as from Eva to Ave (as S. Jerome says), and the whole sin of Eve taken away by the benediction of Mary. Therefore preachers should always say as much praise of them as possible." It is interesting to note that in pre - industrial times, misogynic authorities were often (such as in "The Romance of the Rose" feminist debate) just called "The Roman Books", due to the perceived paternalistic attitude of both Pagan & Christian Romans to gender problems. Another example often given of this, Gregory of Tours report of how, in the 585CE Council of Macon, attended by 43 bishops that one bishop maintained that woman could not be included under the term "man", and as being responsible for Adam's sin, had a deficient soul. However, he accepted the reasoning of the other bishops and did not press his case for the holy book of the Old Testament tells us that in the beginning, when God created man, "Male and female he created them and called their name Adam," which means earthly man; even so, he called the woman Eve, yet of both he used the word "man."

Eve in Christian Art is most usually portrayed as the temptress of Adam, and often during the Renaissance the serpent in the Garden is portrayed as having a woman's face identical to that of Eve.

Some Christians claim monogamy is implied in the story of Adam and Eve as one woman is created for one man. Eve's being taken from his side implies not only her secondary role in the conjugal state (1 Corinthians 11:9), but also emphasizes the intimate union between husband and wife, and the dependence of the latter on the former "Wherefore a man shall leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they shall be two in one flesh."

Eve is commemorated as a matriarch in the Calendar of Saints of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod with Adam on December 19.

Eve in Gnosticism

Eve too has different roles within Gnosticism. For example she is often seen as the embodiment of the supreme feminine principle, called Barbelo (from Arb-Eloh), barbeloth, or barthenos. As such she is equated with the Light-Maiden of Sophia (Wisdom), creator of the word (Logos) of God, the "thygater tou photos" or simply the Virgin Maiden, "parthenos". In other texts she is equated with Zoe (Life) [12]. Again, in conventional Christianity, this is a prefigurement of Mary, also sometimes called "the Second Eve". In other Gnostic texts, such as The Hypostasis of the Archons (The Reality of the Rulers), the Pistis Sophia is equated with Eve's daughter, Norea, the wife of Seth.

As a result of such Gnostic beliefs, especially among Marcionites, women were considered equal to men, being revered as prophets, teachers, travelling evangelists, faith healers, priests and even bishops.

Eve in Islam

Eve is not mentioned by name in the Qur'an, she is nevertheless referred to as Adam's spouse, and Islamic tradition refers to her by an etymologically similar name - حواء (Hawwāʾ) .

Thus mention is found in verses 30-39 of Sura 2, verses 11-25 of Sura 7, verses 26-42 of Sura 15, verses 61-65 of Sura 17, verses 50-51 of Sura 18, verses 110-124 of Sura 20 and in verses 71-85 of Sura 38.

The Islamic view of the matter is clear from the Qur'anic verses that mean:

By deceit he [Satan] brought them to their fall: when they tasted the tree, their shame became manifest to them and they began to sew together the leaves of the Garden over their bodies. And their Lord called unto them: “Did I not forbid you that tree and tell you that Satan was your avowed enemy?” They said: “Our Lord we have wronged our own souls and if You forgive us not and bestow not upon us Your mercy, we shall certainly be lost.”

(Al-A`raf 7:22-23)

Islamic texts, which include Quran and the books of Sunnah (Hadith), potentially dramatically alter the Biblical story of Adam and Eve. The Qur’an, contrary to the Bible, places equal blame on both Adam and Eve for their mistake. The Qur’an does not say that Eve tempted Adam to eat from the tree or even that she had eaten before him. Eve in the Qur’an is not a seducer or deceiver. God, according to the Qur’an, punishes no one for another’s faults. In the book it states both Adam and Eve committed a sin and then asked God for forgiveness and He forgave them both. So there is no question of a hereditary sin called Original Sin in Islam.

However, a saying of Prophet Mohammed narrated by Abu Hurairah states: “Narrated Abu Hurairah: The Prophet said, ‘Were it not for Bani Israel, meat would not decay; and were it not for Eve, no woman would ever betray her husband.’" (Sahih Bukhari, Hadith 611, Volume 55). An identical but more explicit version is found in the second most respected book of the prophetic narrations, Sahih Muslim. “Abu Hurairah reported Allah's Messenger as saying: Had it not been for Eve, woman would have never acted unfaithfully towards her husband.” (Hadith 3471, Volume 8). Shaykh Yusuf al-Qaradawi and others have suggested that these hadiths are weak because they violate universal laws (eg. meat decaying) and the Qur'an.

The Islamic scholar Tabari cites the biblical tale of Eve's creation, stating that she was named because she was created from a living thing (her name means living). The torah gives an etymology for woman, or rather the Hebrew equivalent (ish-shah), stating that she should be called woman since she was taken out of man (ish in Hebrew). The etymology is regarded as implausible by most Semitic linguists.[citation needed]

Traditionally, the final resting place of Eve is said to be the "Tomb of Eve" in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Eve in modern times

On the basis of Eve's so-called transgression, in the late sixteenth century a young scholar, Valentius Acidalius, who was working as a teacher in Silesia, published a pamphlet later republished at Lyons in France in 1647 in Italian, That was entitled Women do not have a soul and do not belong to the human race, as is shown by many passages of Holy Scripture. This belief was taken up by Johannes Leyser, a Lutheran pastor from the region of Frankfurt in 1675, who linked the story to a misreading of the results of the Council of Macon. Pierre Bayle, a Dutch Calvinist with a marked distaste for the Catholicism to which he had once adhered, spread Leyer's belief further by writing in his Dictionnaire: "What I think yet more strange is to find that in a Council it has been gravely proposed as a question whether women were human creatures, and that it was determined affirmatively [only] after a long debate."

An alternative view was given by Matilda Joslyn Gage who in Woman, Church and State: A Historical Account of the Status of Woman Through the Christian Ages with Reminiscences of the Matriarchate (1893, reprinted by Arno Press Inc, 1972), who showed that in book printed in Amsterdam, 1700, in a series of eleven reasons, threw the greater culpability upon Adam, saying of Eve (pages 522–523):

  • First: The serpent tempted her before she thought of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and suffered herself to be persuaded that not well understood his meaning.
  • Second: That believing that God had not given such prohibition she ate the fruit.
  • Third: Sinning through ignorance she committed a less heinous crime than Adam.
  • Fourth: That Eve did not necessarily mean the penalty of eternal death, for God's decree only imported that man should die if he sinned against his conscience.
  • Fifth: That God might have inflicted death on Eve without injustice, yet he resolved, so great is his mercy toward his works, to let her live, in (that) she had not sinned maliciously.
  • Sixth: That being exempted from the punishment contained in God's decree, she might retain all the prerogatives of her sex except those that were not incidental with the infirmities to which God condemned her.
  • Seventh: That she retained in particulars the prerogative of bringing forth children who had a right to eternal happiness on condition of obeying the new Adam.
  • Eighth: That as mankind was to proceed from Adam and Eve, Adam was preserved alive only because his preservation was necessary for the procreation of children.
  • Ninth: That it was by accident therefore, that the sentence of death was not executed on him, but that otherwise he was more (justly) punished than his wife.
  • Tenth: That she was not driven out from Paradise as he was, but was only obliged to leave it to find out Adam in the earth; and that it was full privilege of returning thither again.
  • Eleventh: That the children of Adam and Eve were subject to eternal damnation, not a proceeding from Eve, but as proceeding from Adam."

Early feminist theologian Katharine Bushnell writes that Eve was deceived by the Serpent and therefore sinned in ignorance. She confesses her sin and God does not banish her from Eden. Adam, however, sinned in full knowledge and does not repent, and is therefore assigned the blame.
Pamela Norris in her book "Eve: A Biography" argues that throughout history the story of Eve "was developed to manipulate and control women." Bryce Christiansen, commenting upon Norris's work shows how "The effort to demystify Eve requires a context that sharply contrasts her subordination to Adam with the awesome power of female deities prominent in Babylonian and Canaanite myths. Norris exposes the various ways in which the Genesis account of Eve's transgression has justified centuries of scapegoating women". Norris also reports upon the snaky Lamias and Liliths who haunted nineteenth-century painting and literature, suggesting that centuries of disobedient women have been linked with Eve, the original bad girl, providing ample ammunition for male fears and fantasies.
Elaine Pagels in her book "Adam, Eve and the Serpent" shows how the disgust felt by early Christians for the flesh was a radical departure from both pagan and Jewish sexual attitudes. In fact, as she demonstrates, the ascetic movement in Christianity met with great resistance in the first four centuries. Sex only became fully tainted, inextricably linked to sin through the work of Tertullian and Augustine, attacking Gnosticism while adopting certain of their attitudes.
Modern feminists have tended to examine the story of Eve as the source of patriarchal misogyny in Christianity. Genesis 2-3 is more often cited than any other biblical text[citation needed] justifying the suppression of women and proof of their inferiority to men. Others like Phyllis Trible, have contested that it is a certain kind of interpretation of Genesis 2-3 that is the source of the problem. Trible, for instance, argues that before the fall, there is an amazing equality between Adam and Eve. Before the creation of Eve, she argues, 'ādām or human, is created from the 'ădāmāh or humus, and although a male pronoun is used for this creature Trible argues that it was androgynous, not yet sexually differentiated. This interpretation is not original, it in fact goes back through Rashi, the 10th century Jewish interpreter, and ultimately back to Plato.
Trible also argues that Eve is the crown of creation rather than an afterthought. She further argues that the word 'ēzer, meaning "helper" is not to signify a subordinate position to man as it is also most often used describe God and is thus a superior rather than an inferior being. In the story of the garden, Eve is also autonomous and independent while Adam is surprisingly passive. [13].
Mieke Bal, while less positive than Trible, nevertheless argues that Eve taking of the apple is the first act of human independence, and by gaining knowledge of good and evil, she achieves a position of greater equality with the divinity, rather than remaining a puppet of God. [14]
Robert McElvaine [15] argues that the story of Adam and Eve can be linked to the gender dynamics associated with the rise of Patriarchy in the ancient world. The Garden of Eden he claims is a mythical reference to hunting and gathering societies in which people lived in nature, not doing much work. With eating of the tree of Knowledge, first women, and then men took conscious control over the food supply, and now had to take care and be answerable for any ecological problems this brought. The parallel between Adam cursing Eve is paralleled in the Cain and Abel story, according to McElwaine, as "real men don't fool about with plants". Through associating male semen metaphorically with seed 'man became the Godlike creator of life and women from their Goddess-like creators [transformed] into ...dirt ...In Genesis the soil has no creative power" (p. 128). Projecting this into the sacred world, the belief that through planting seed in the Earth men had procreative power, just as with planting semen in the womb he had the same. As a result, it was argued, the Supreme God must also been male and men are closer to God than women. The hierarchy that emerged was

God - over
Men - over
Women - over
the Earth.

Thus according to McElvaine, men can be the sons of God, but all women are the daughters of men.

See also


  1. ^ American Heritage Dictionary
  2. ^ The Weidner "Chronicle" mentioning Kubaba from A.K. Grayson, Assyrian and Babylonian Chronicles (1975)
  3. ^ Munn, Mark (2004). "Kybele as Kubaba in a Lydo-Phrygian Context": Emory University cross-cultural conference "Hittites, Greeks and Their Neighbors in Central Anatolia" (Abstracts)
  4. ^ Hebrew = Ishah, woman, and ish, man
  5. ^ Genesis 3
  6. ^ This (Gen.3:17) is the point at which Adam is first used as a proper name.
  7. ^ Hebrew Havva, "life".
  8. ^ Genesis 4
  9. ^ translated from the Ethiopic (1882) by Malan. This was first translated by Dillmann (Das christl. Adambuch des Morgenlandes, 1853), and the Ethiopic book first edited by Trump (Abh. d. Münch. Akad. xv., 1870-1881)
  10. ^ Die Schatzhöhle translated by Carl Bezold from three Syriac MSS. in 1883 and subsequently edited in Syriac in 1888
  11. ^ Tertullian, "De Cultu Feminarum", Book I Chapter I, Modesty in Apparel Becoming to Women in Memory of the Introduction of Sin Through a Woman (in "The Ante-Nicene Fathers")
  12. ^ Krosney, Herbert (2007) "The Lost Gospel: the quest for the Gospel of Judas Iscariot" (National Geographic)
  13. ^ Trible Phyllis, (1973) "Depatriarchalising the Biblical Tradition" (Journal of the American Academy of Religion, Vol 41 1973)
  14. ^ Bal, Mieke "Sexuality, Sin and Sorrow: The emergence of female character [a reading of Gensis 2-3]", in Susan Rubib Suleiman (Ed) "The Female Body in Western Culture" (Cambridge Uni Press)
  15. ^ McElvaine, Robert (2001) "Eve's seed" (McGraw Hll)


Primary sources

  • Genesis ii.7-iii.23
  • Paulinus Minorita, Compendium

Secondary sources

  • Pamela Norris (1998) "The Story of Eve" (MacMillan Books)
  • Elaine Pagels (1989) "Adam, Eve and the Serpent" (Vintage Books)

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

EVE, the English transcription, through Lat. Eva and Gr. Eiia, of the Hebrew name 7 7 IHavvah, given by Adam to his wife because she was " mother of all living," or perhaps more strictly, " of every group of those connected by female kinship " (see W. R. Smith, Kinship, 2nd ed., p. 208), as if Eve were the personification of mother-kinship, just as Adam (" man ") is the personification of mankind.

[The abstract meaning " life " (LXX. Za»), once favoured by Robertson Smith, is at any rate unsuitable in a popular story. Wellhausen and Ndldeke would compare the Ar. hayyatun, " serpent," and the former remarks that, if this is right, the Israelites received their first ancestress from the Hivvites (Hivites), who were originally the serpent-tribe (Composition des Hexateuchs, p. 343; cf. Reste arabischen Heidentums, 2nd ed., p. 1 54). Cheyne, too, assumes a common origin for Havvah and the Uivvites.] [The account of the origin of Eve (Gen. iii. 21-23) runs thus: " And Yahweh-Elohim caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept. And he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its stead, and the rib which Yahweh Elohim had taken from the man he built up into a woman, and he brought her to the man." Enchanted at the sight, the man now burst out into elevated, rhythmic speech: " This one," he said, " at length is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh," &c.; to which the narrator adds the comment, " Therefore doth a man forsake his father and his mother, and cleave to his wife, and they become one flesh (body)." Whether this comment implies the existence of the custom of beena, marriage (W.R.Smith, Kinship, 2nd ed., p. 208), seems doubtful. It is at least equally possible that the expression " his wife " simply reflects the fact that among ordinary Israelites circumstances had quite naturally brought about the prevalence of monogamy.' What the narrator gives is not a doctrine of marriage, much less a precept, but an explanation of a simple and natural phenomenon. How is it, he asks, that a man is so irresistibly drawn towards a woman? And he answers: Because the first woman was built up out of a rib of the first man. At the same time it is plain that the already existing tendency towards monogamy must have been powerfully assisted by this presentation of Eve's story as well as by the prophetic descriptions of Yahweh's relation to Israel under the figure of a monogamous union.] The narrator is no rhetorician, and spares us a description of the ideal woman. But we know that, for Adam, his strangely New produced wife was a " help (or helper) matching or corresponding to him "; or, as the Authorized Version puts it, " a help meet for him " (ii. 18b). This does not, of course, exclude subordination on the part of the woman; what is excluded is that exaggeration of natural subordination which the narrator may have found both in his 1 That polygamy had not become morally objectionable is shown by the stories of Lamech, Abraham and Jacob.

own and in the neighbouring countries, and which he may have regarded as (together with the pains of parturition) the punishment of the woman's transgression (Gen. iii. 16). His own ideal of woman seems to have made its way in Palestine by slow degrees. An apocryphal book (Tobit viii. 6, 7) seems to contain the only reference to the section till we come to the time of Christ, to whom the comment in Gen. ii. 24 supplies the text for an authoritative prohibition of divorce, which presupposes and sanctifies monogamy (Matt. x. 7, 8; Matt. xix. 5). For other New Testament applications of the story of Eve see 1 Cor. xi. 8, 9 (especially); 2 Cor. xi. 3; I Tim. ii. 13, 14; and in general cf. Adam, and Ency. Biblica, " Adam and Eve.") [The seeming omissions in the Biblical narrative have been filled up by imaginative Jewish writers.] The earliest source which remains to us is the Book of Jubilees, or Leptogenesis, a Palestinian work (referred by R. H. Charles to the century immediately preceding the Christian era; see Apocalyptic Literature). this book, which was largely used by Christian writers, we find a chronology of the lives of Adam and Eve and the names of their daughtersAvan and Azura. 2 The Targum of Jonathan informs us that Eve was created from the thirteenth rib of Adam's right side, thus taking the view that Adam had a rib more than his descendants. Some of the Jewish legends show clear marks of foreign influence. Thus the notion that the first man was a double being, afterwards separated into the two persons of Adam and Eve (Berachot, 61; Erubin, 18), may be traced back to Philo (De mundi opif. §53; cf. Quaest. in Gen. lib. i. §25), who borrows the idea, and almost the words, of the myth related by Aristophanes in the Platonic Symposium (189 D, 190 A), which, in extravagant form, explains the passion of love by the legend that male and female originally formed one body.

[A recent critic 3 (F. Schwally) even holds that this notion was originally expressed in the account of the creation of man in Gen. i. 27. This involves a textual emendation, and one must at least admit that the present text is not without difficulty, and that Berossus refers to the existence of primeval monstrous androgynous beings according to Babylonian mythology.] There is an analogous Iranian legend of the true man, which parted into man and woman in the Bundahish 4 (the Parsi Genesis), and an Indian legend, which, according to Spiegel, has presumably an Iranian source.5 [It has been remarked elsewhere (Adam, §16) that though the later Jews gathered material for thought very widely, such guidance as they required in theological reflection was mainly derived from Greek culture. What, for in- Jewish stance, was to be made of such a story as that in Gen.

ii.-iv.? To " minds trained under the influence of the tats Q`e" Jewish Haggada, in which the whole Biblical history is freely intermixed with legendary and parabolic matter," the question as to the literal truth of that story could hardly be formulated. It is otherwise when the Greek leaven begins to work.] Josephus, in the prologue to his Archaeology, reserves the problem of the true meaning of the Mosaic narrative, but does not regard everything as strictly literal. Philo, the great representative of Alexandrian allegory, expressly argues that in the nature of things the trees of life and knowledge cannot be taken otherwise than symbolically. His interpretation of the creation of Eve is, as has been already observed, plainly suggested by a Platonic myth. The longing for reunion which love implants in the divided halves of the original dual man is the source of sensual pleasure (symbolized by the serpent), which in turn is the beginning of all transgression. Eve represents the sensuous or perceptive part of man's nature, Adam the reason. The serpent, therefore, does not venture to attack Adam directly.

2 See West's authoritative translation in Pahlavi Texts (Sacred Books of the East).

3 " Die bib'. SchOpfungsberichte " (Archie fur Religionswissenschaft, ix. 171 ff.).

' Spiegel, Erdnische Alterthumskunde, i. 511.

5 Muir, Sanscrit Texts, vol. i. p. 25; cf. Spiegel, vol. i. p. 458.

It is sense which yields to pleasure, and in turn enslaves the reason and destroys its immortal virtue. This exposition, in which the elements of the Bible narrative become mere symbols of the abstract notions of Greek philosophy, and are adapted to Greek conceptions of the origin of evil in the material and sensuous part of man, was adopted into Christian theology by Clement and Origen, notwithstanding its obvious inconsistency with the Pauline anthropology, and the difficulty which its supporters felt in reconciling it with the Christian doctrine of the excellence of the married state (Clemens Alex. Stromata, p. 174). These difficulties had more weight with the Western church, which, less devoted to speculative abstractions and more deeply influenced by the Pauline anthropology, refused, especially since Augustine, to reduce Paradise and the fall to the region of pure intelligibilia; though a spiritual sense was admitted along with the literal (Aug. Civ. Dei, xiii. 21).1 The history of Adam and Eve became the basis of anthropological discussions which acquired more than speculative importance from their connexion with the doctrine of original sin and the meaning of the sacrament of baptism. One or two points in Augustinian teaching may be here mentioned as having to do particularly with Eve. The question whether the soul of Eve was derived from Adam or directly infused by the Creator is raised as an element in the great problem of traducianism and creationism (De Gen. ad lit. lib. x.). And it is from Augustine that Milton derives the idea that Adam sinned, not from desire for the forbidden fruit, but because love forbade him to dissociate his fate from Eve's (ibid. lib. xi. sub fin.). Medieval discussion moved mainly in the lines laid down by Augustine. A sufficient sample of the way in which the subject was treated by the schoolmen may be found in the Summa of Thomas, pars i. qu. xcii. De productions mulieris. The Reformers, always hostile to allegory, and in this matter especially influenced by the Augustinian anthropology, adhered strictly to the literal interpretation of the history of the Protoplasts, which has continued to be generally identified .with Protestant orthodoxy. The disintegration of the confessional doctrine of sin in last century was naturally associated with new theories of the meaning of the biblical narrative; but neither renewed forms of the allegorical interpretation, in which everything is reduced to abstract ideas about reason and sensuality, nor the attempts of Eichhorn and others to extract a kernel of simple history by allowing largely for the influence of poetical form in so early a narrative, have found lasting acceptance. On the other hand, the strict historical interpretation is beset with difficulties which modern interpreters have felt with increasing force, and which there is a growing disposition to solve by adopting in one or other form what is called the mythical theory of the narrative. But interpretations pass under this now popular title which have no real claim to be so designated. What is common to the " mythical " interpretations is to find the real value of the narrative, not in the form of the story, but in the thoughts which it embodies. But the story cannot be called a myth in the strict sense of the word, unless we are prepared to place it on one line with the myths of heathenism, produced by the unconscious play of plastic fancy, giving shape to the impressions of natural phenomena on primitive observers. Such a theory does no justice to a narrative which embodies profound truths peculiar to the religion of revelation. Other forms of the so-called mythical interpretation are little more than abstract allegory in a new guise, ignoring the fact that the biblical story does not teach general truths which repeat themselves in every individual, but gives a view of the purpose of man's creation, and of the origin of sin, in connexion with the divine plan of redemption. Among his other services in refutation of the unhistorical rationalism of last century, Kant has the merit of having forcibly recalled attention to the fact that the narrative of Genesis, even if we do not take it literally, must be regarded as 1 Thus in medieval theology Eve is a type of the church, and her formation from the rib has a mystic reason, inasmuch as blood and water (the sacraments of the church) flowed from the side of Christ on the cross (Thomas, Summa, par. i. qu. xcii.).

presenting a view of the beginnings of the history of the human race (Muthmasslicher Anfang der Menschengeschichte, 1786). Those who recognize this fact ought not to call themselves or be called by others adherents of the mythical theory, although they also recognize that in the nature of things the divine truths brought out in the history of the creation and fall could not have been expressed either in the form of literal history or in the shape of abstract metaphysical doctrine; or even although they may hold - as is done by many who accept the narrative as a part of supernatural revelation - that the specific biblical truths which the narrative conveys are presented through the vehicle of a story which, at least in some of its parts, may possibly be shaped by the influence of legends common to the Hebrews with their heathen neighbours. (W. R. S.; [T. K. C.])

<< William Maxwell Evarts

Evection >>


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

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See also eve, and Ève




From Ancient Greek Εὕα (Heua) < Hebrew חַוָּה (havah) = 'life; living one; lively; giving life'.

Proper noun




  1. (Biblical) According to the Bible and Qur'an, the first woman and mother of the human race; Adam's wife.
  2. An unspecified primordial woman, from whom many or all people are descended.
    The Seven Daughters of Eve; mitochondrial Eve
  3. A female given name.


  • 1611King James Version of the Bible, Genesis 3:20
    And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.
  • 1904Mark Twain, Extracts from Adam's Diary
    After all these years, I see that I was mistaken about Eve in the beginning; it is better to live outside the Garden with her than inside it without her.
  • 1970 - L.P.Hartley: My Sister's Keeper: page 113:
    "You were always a cynic," said Edith tolerantly. "I'm sure that Eve will want to have a baby - isn't that why we called her Eve?"
    "Of course not," said Herbert, as if the baby-cult had long been irritating him. "We called her Eve, or Evelyn, after your grandmother, who was going to leave, and did leave us some money."


Related terms

See also



Proper noun


  1. A female given name, variant of Eva and a short form of Evelin.

Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

(Heb. hawwah). Meaning: life; living

The name given by Adam to his wife (Gen 3:20; Gen 4:1). The account of her creation is given in Gen 2:21f. The Creator, by declaring that it was not good for man to be alone, and by creating for him a suitable companion, gave sanction to monogamy. The commentator Matthew Henry says: "This companion was taken from his side to signify that she was to be dear unto him as his own flesh. Not from his head, lest she should rule over him; nor from his feet, lest he should tyrannize over her; but from his side, to denote that species of equality which is to subsist in the marriage state." And again, "That wife that is of God's making by special grace, and of God's bringing by special providence, is likely to prove a helpmeet to her husband."

Through the subtle temptation of the serpent she violated the commandment of God by taking of the forbidden fruit, which she gave also unto her husband (1 Tim 2:13ff; 2Cor 11:3). When she gave birth to her first son, she said, "I have gotten a man from the Lord" (R.V., "I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord," Gen 4:1). Thus she welcomed Cain, as some think, as if he had been the Promised One the "Seed of the woman."

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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The name of the first woman, the wife of Adam, the mother of Cain, Abel, and Seth. The name occurs only five times in the Bible. In Gen., iii, 20, it is connected etymologically with the verb meaning "to live": "And Adam called the name of his wife Eve [hawwah]: because she was the mother of all the living". The Septuagint rendering in this passage is Zoe (=life, or life-giver), which is a translation; in two other passages (Gen.,iv, 1 and 25) the name is transliterated Eua. The Biblical data concerning Eve are confined almost exclusively to the second, third, and fourth chapters of Genesis (see Adam).

The first account of the creation (Gen. i, "P") sets forth the creation of mankind in general, and states simply that they were created male and female. The second narrative (Gen., ii, "J") is more explicit and detailed. God is represented as forming an individual man from the slime of the earth, and breathing into his nostrils the breath of life. In like manner the creation of the first woman and her relation to man is described with picturesque and significant imagery. In this account, in which the plants and animals appear on the scene only after the creation of man, the loneliness of the latter (Gen., ii, 18), and his failure to find a suitable companion among the animals (Gen., ii, 20), are set forth as the reason why God determines to create for man a companion like unto himself. He causes a deep sleep to fall upon him, and taking out one of the ribs, forms it into a woman, who, when she is brought to him, is recognized at once as bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh. A discussion of the arguments in favor of the historical, or the more or less allegorical character of this narrative would be beyond the scope of the present notice. Suffice it to say that the biblical account has always been looked upon by pious commentators as embodying, besides the fact of man's origin, a deep, practical and many-sided significance, bearing on the mutual relationship established between the sexes by the Creator.

Thus, the primitive institution of monogamy is implied in the fact that one woman is created for one man. Eve, as well as Adam, is made the object of a special creative act, a circumstance which indicates her natural equality with him, while on the other hand her being taken from his side implies not only her secondary rôle in the conjugal state (I Cor., xi, 9), but also emphasizes the intimate union between husband and wife, and the dependence of the latter on the former "Wherefore a man shall leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they shall be two in one flesh." The innocence of the newly created couple is clearly indicated in the following verse, but the narrator immediately proceeds to relate how they soon acquired, through actual transgression, the knowledge of good and evil, and with the sense of shame which had been previously unknown to them. In the story of the Fall, the original cause of evil is the serpent, which in later Jewish tradition is identified with Satan (Wisdom, ii, 24). He tempts Eve presumably as the weaker of the two, and she in turn tempts Adam, who yields to her seduction. Immediately their eyes are opened, but in an unexpected manner. Shame and remorse take possession of them, and they seek to hide from the face of the Lord.

For her share in the transgression, Eve (and womankind after her) is sentenced to a life of sorrow and travail, and to be under the power of her husband. Doubtless this last did not imply that the woman's essential condition of equality with man was altered, but the sentence expresses what, in the nature of things, was bound to follow in a world dominated by sin and its consequences. The natural dependence and subjection of the weaker party was destined inevitably to become something little short of slavery. But if woman was the occasion of man's transgression and fall, it was also decreed in the Divine counsels, that she was to be instrumental in the scheme of restoration which God already promises while in the act of pronouncing sentence upon the serpent. The woman has suffered defeat, and infinitely painful are its consequences, but henceforth there will be enmity between her and the serpent, between his seed and her seed, until through the latter in the person of the future Redeemer, who will crush the serpent's head, she will again be victorious.

Of the subsequent history of Eve the Bible gives little information. In Gen., iv, 1, we read that she bore a son whom she named Cain, because she got him (literally, "acquired" or "possessed") through God--this at least is the most plausible interpretation of this obscure passage. Later she gave birth to Abel, and the narrative does not record the birth of another child until after the slaying of Abel by his older brother, when she bore a son and called his name Seth; saying: "God hath given me [literally, "put" or "appointed"] another seed, for Abel whom Cain slew".

Eve is mentioned in the Book of Tobias (viii, 8; Sept., viii, 6) where it is simply affirmed that she was given to Adam for a helper; in II Cor., xi, 3, where reference is made to her seduction by the serpent, and in I Tim., ii, 13, where the Apostle enjoins submission and silence upon women, arguing that "Adam was first formed; then Eve. And Adam was not seduced, but the woman being seduced, was in the transgression".

As in the case of the other Old Testament personages, many rabbinical legends have been connected with the name of Eve. They may be found in the "Jewish Encyclopedia", s.v. (see also, ADAM), and in Vigouroux, "Dictionnaire de la Bible", I, art. "Adam". They are, for the most part, puerile and fantastic, and devoid of historical value, unless in so far as they serve to illustrate the mentality of the later Jewish writers, and the unreliability of the "traditions" derived from such sources, though they are sometimes appealed to in critical discussions.

Portions of this entry are taken from The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1907.


—Biblical Data:

The wife of Adam. According to Gen. iii. 20, Eve was so called because she was "the mother of all living" (R. V., margin, "Life" or "Living"). On the ground that it was not "good for man to be alone" God resolved to "make him an help meet for him" (ib. ii. 18), first creating, with this end in view, the beasts of the field and the fowl of the air and then bringing them unto Adam. When Adam did not find among these a helpmeet for himself, Yhwh caused a deep sleep to fall upon him, and took one of his ribs, from which He made a woman, and brought her unto the man (ib. ii. 22). Upon seeing her, Adam welcomed her as "bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh" (ib. ii. 23), declaring that she should be called "ishshah" because she was taken out of "ish" (man.)

Dwelling in the Garden of Eden with Adam, Eve is approached and tempted by the serpent. She yields to the reptile's seductive arguments, and partakes of the forbidden fruit, giving thereof to her husband, who, like her, eats of it. Both discover their nakedness and make themselves aprons of figleaves. When God asks for an accounting Adam puts the blame on Eve. As a punishment, the sorrows of conception and childbirth are announced to her, as well as subjection to her husband (ib. iii. 16). Driven out of Eden, Eve gives birth to two sons, Cain and Abel; herself naming the elder in the obscure declaration "I have gotten a man with the help of Yhwh" (ib. iv. 1, R. V.). Later, after the murder of Abel, she bears another son, to whom she gives the name "Seth," saying that he is given to her by Yhwh as a compensation for Abel (ib. iv. 25).

—In Rabbinical Literature:

Eve was not created simultaneously with Adam because God foreknew that later she would be a source of complaint. He therefore delayed forming her until Adam should express a desire for her (Gen. R. xvii.). Eve was created from the thirteenth rib on Adam's right side and from the flesh of his heart (Targ. Pseudo-Jonathan to Gen. ii. 21; Pirḳe R. El. xii.). Together with Eve Satan was created (Gen. R. xvii.). God adorned Eve like a bride with all the jewelry mentioned in Isa. iii. He built the nuptial chamber for her (Gen. R. xviii.). According to Pirḳe R. El. xii., as soon as Adam beheld Eve he embraced and kissed her; her name (image) , from (image) , indicates that God ( (image) ) joined them together (see also Ab. R. N. xxxviii.). Ten gorgeous "ḥuppot" (originally, "bridal chambers"; now, "bridal canopies"), studded with gems and pearls and ornamented with gold, did God erect for Eve, whom He Himself gave away in marriage, and over whom He pronounced the blessing; while the angels danced and beat timbrels and stood guard over the bridal chamber (Pirḳe R. El. xii.).

Samael, prompted by jealousy, picked out the serpent to mislead Eve (Yalḳ., Gen. xxv.; comp. Josephus, "Ant." i. 1, § 4; Ab. R. N. i.), whom it approached, knowing that women could be more easily moved than men (Pirḳe R. El. xiii.). Or, according to another legend, the serpent was induced to lead Eve to sin by desire on its part to possess her (Soṭah 9; Gen. R. xviii.), and it cast into her the taint of lust ( (image) ; Yeb. 103b; 'Ab. Zarah 22b; Shab. 146a; Yalḳ., Gen. 28, 130). Profiting by the absence of the two guardian angels (Ḥag. 16a; Ber. 60b), Satan, or the serpent, which then had almost the shape of a man (Gen. R. xix. 1), displayed great argumentative skill in explaining the selfish reasons which had prompted God's prohibition (Pirḳe R. El. l.c.; Gen. R. xix.; Tan., Bereshit, viii.), and convinced Eve by ocular proof that the tree could be touched (comp. Ab. R. N. i. 4) without entailing death. Eve thereupon laid hold of the tree, and at once beheld the angel of death coming toward her (Targ. Pseudo-Jon. to Gen. iii. 6). Then, reasoning that if she died and Adam continued to live he would take another wife, she made him share her own fate (Pirḳe R. El. xiii.; Gen. R. xix.); at the invitation of the serpent she had partaken of wine; and she now mixed it with Adam's drink (Num. R. x.). Nine curses together with death befell Eve in consequence of her disobedience (Pirḳe R. El. xiv.; Ab. R. N. ii. 42).

Eve became pregnant, and bore Cain and Abel on the very day of (her creation and) expulsion from Eden (Gen. R. xii.). These were born full-grown, and each had a twin sister (ib.). Cain's real father was not Adam, but one of the demons (Pirḳe R. El. xxi., xxii.). Seth was Eve's first child by Adam. Eve died shortly after Adam, on the completion of the six days of mourning, and was buried in the Cave of Machpelah (Pirḳe R. El. xx.). Comp. Adam, Book of.

—In Arabic Literature:

Eve is a fantastic figure taken from the Jewish Haggadah. In the Koran her name is not mentioned, although her person is alluded to in the command given by Allah to Adam and his "wife," to live in the garden, to eat whatever they desired, but not to approach "that tree" (suras ii. 33, vii. 18). According to Mohammedan tradition, Eve was created out of a rib of Adam's left side while he was asleep. Riḍwan, the guardian of paradise, conducted them to the garden, where theywere welcomed by all creatures as the father and mother of Mohammed.

Iblis, who had been forbidden to enter paradise and was jealous of Adam's prerogative, wished to entice him to sin. He asked the peacock to carry him under his wings, but, as the bird refused, he hid himself between the teeth of the serpent, and thus managed to come near Adam and Eve. He first persuaded Eve to eat of the fruit, which was a kind of wheat that grew on the most beautiful tree in the garden, and she gave some to Adam. Thereupon all their ornaments fell from their bodies, so that they stood naked. Then they were expelled from the garden. Adam was thrown to Serendib (Ceylon), and Eve to Jidda (near Mecca).

Although Adam and Eve could not see each other, they heard each other's lamentations; and their repentance restored to them God's compassion. God commanded Adam to follow a cloud which would lead him to a place opposite to the heavenly throne, where he should build a temple. The cloud guided him to Mount Arafa, near Mecca, where he found Eve. From this the mount derived its name.

Eve died a year after Adam, and was buried outside Mecca, or, according to others, in India, or at Jerusalem.

Bibliography: Weil, Biblische Legenden der Muselmänner.

—Critical View:

The account of the creation of woman—she is called "Eve" only after the curse—belongs to the J narrative. It reflects the naive speculations of the ancient Hebrews on the beginnings of the human race as introductory to the history of Israel. Its tone throughout is anthropomorphic. The story was current among the people long before it took on literary form (Gunkel, "Genesis," p. 2), and it may possibly have been an adaptation of a Babylonian myth (ib. p. 35). Similar accounts of the creation of woman from a part of man's body are found among many races (Tuch, "Genesis," notes on ch. ii.); for instance, in the myth of Pandora. That woman is the cause of evil is another wide-spread conceit. The etymology of "ishshah" from "ish" (Gen. ii. 23) is incorrect ( (image) belongs to the root (image) ), but exhibits all the characteristics of folk-etymology. The name (image) , which Adam gives the woman in Gen. iii. 20, seems not to be of Hebrew origin. The similarity of sound with (image) explains the popular etymology adduced in the explanatory gloss, though it is W. R. Smith's opinion ("Kinship and Marriage in Early Arabia," p. 177) that Eve represents the bond of matriarchal kinship ("ḥayy"). Nöldeke ("Z. D. M. G." xlii. 487), following Philo ("De Agricultura Noe," § 21) and the Midrash Rabbah (ad loc.), explains the name as meaning "serpent," preserving thus the belief that all life sprang from a primeval serpent. The narrative forms part of a culture-myth attempting to account among other things for the pangs of childbirth, which are comparatively light among primitive peoples (compare Adam; Eden, Garden of; Fall of Man). As to whether this story inculcates the divine institution of Monogamy or not, see Gunkel, "Genesis," p. 11, and Dillmann's and Holzinger's commentaries on Gen. ii. 23-24.

This entry includes text from the Jewish Encyclopedia, 1906.
Facts about EveRDF feed
Married to Adam  +
Parent of Cain  +, Abel  +, and Seth  +


Up to date as of February 01, 2010
(Redirected to Eve (4004 BC-?) article)

From Familypedia

Sex: Female
Birth: 4004 BC
Father: God
Spouse: Adam (4004 BC-3074 BC)
Marriage: Garden of Eden, Eden, Mesopotamia
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Name Variations

Hawwa (Arabic and most Muslim communities), Heva (Turkish?), Chava (Yiddish?)


Wikipedia may have more biographical information on this person. See Wikipedia's article (if any).


Offspring of Eve (4004 BC-?) and Adam (4004 BC-3074 BC)
Name Birth Death
Cain (?-?) ,
Abel (?-bef3630 BC) ,
Seth (3630 BC-2718 BC) 3630 BC,
2718 BC
Azura (?-?) ,
Awan (?-?) ,
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  • Book of Genesis, The Bible
Facts about Eve (4004 BC-?)RDF feed
Children-g1 Cain (?-?)  +, Abel (?-bef3630 BC)  +, Seth (3630 BC-2718 BC)  +, Azura (?-?)  +, and Awan (?-?)  +

This article uses material from the "Eve (4004 BC-?)" article on the Genealogy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

Eve could mean:



  • Eve (Bible), the first woman according to Christian theology.

Computers and programming

  • EVE Online, an MMORPG computer game, Space Simulation
  • Groupee Community, an online community formerly known as Eve
  • Evolving Virtual Enterprise, or EVE(TM), an adaptive Web Portal System
  • EVE (text editor), a text editor provided with the VMS operating system
  • Eve, a multimedia CD-ROM game created in association with and featuring the music of Peter Gabriel
  • EVE Electronic Vintage Ensemble : a software synthesizer in AU and VST format


  • EVE: The Second Genesis Collectible Card Game


The day before, or the evening before, a holiday, such as:

  • New Year's Eve
  • Christmas Eve
  • St. John's Eve, also called Midsummer's Eve or Bonfire Night
  • The Eve of St. Agnes
  • All Hallows Eve, another name for Halloween
  • A Vigil may begin on the eve of a holy day or day of special significance

Fictional characters

  • Eve (Applegeeks), an android in the Applegeeks webcomic
  • E.V.E (Exceptionally Versatile Evolvanoid), from early Sonic the Hedgehog comics
  • Eve (Buffyverse), in the television series Angel
  • Eve (DC Comics), in the Sandman comic book series
  • Eve (Xena), Xena's daughter in the TV series Xena: Warrior Princess
  • Eve, a female superhero in the Freedom Force computer game series
  • Mitochondria Eve (not to be confused with Mitochondrial Eve), the main villain in the Parasite Eve video game.
  • Eve (Black Cat), in the manga Black Cat
  • Eve, title of a tv episode from the tv series, "Journey to the Unknown" starring Carol Lynley
  • Eve, a fictional character from the video game Hitman: Blood Money

Music and television

  • Eve (album), a progressive rock album by The Alan Parsons Project
  • EVE (band), a Korean visual rock band
  • Eve (TV series), starring rapper Eve (rapper) as Shelly
  • "Eve" (The X-Files episode), an episode of The X-Files
  • Ève, an oratorio by Jules Massenet
  • Divergence Eve, an anime.
  • Eve (rapper)


  • Eve (name)
  • Eve (surname)
  • Mitochondrial Eve, the most recent common matrilineal ancestor of all living humans
  • Eve, the alleged first successful human clone, by the Raelian corporation Clonaid
  • Eve Angel, Hungarian Porn Star
  • Eve Laurence, American Porn Star


  • Ève, a commune in the Oise département of France


  • Eve (cigarette)
  • Eve, standing for Everything Vs Everything is a Mugen screenpack customized for play with the Mugen engine
  • Eva (mortar), of the Mörser Karl series of German WWII artillery
  • Ewe language, alternate spelling
  • Eve, meaning evening, a reference to a time of day at approximately 6PM
  • Scaled Composites White Knight Two, or Eve, a sub-orbital launch aircraft
  • Eve, a symbolic name for an eavesdropper in cryptography discussions; see Alice and Bob

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