Shem (Hebrew שֵׁם) was one of the three sons of Noah in the Bible who helped to repopulate the earth (Gen 9:19). Shem, along with his brother Japheth respectfully covered his father when he was naked. (Gen 9:23) Shem had five sons who settled in what would be modern day Syria, Iraq, and Iran. Abraham was a descendant of Shem through Shem's son Arpachshad. The term "Semite" originally denoted descendants of Shem.
- NIV Study Bible, Zondervon, p. 21 map