1. The grandson of Cush, Ge 10:7; and
2. The son of Jokshan, Abraham's son by Keturah, Ge 25:3. Both were founders of tribes frequently named in Scripture. The descendants of the Cushite Dedan are supposed to have settled in southern Arabia, near the Persian gulf, in which there is an island called by the Arabs Dedan lived in the neighborhood of Idumaea, Jer 49:8. It is not clear, in all cases where the name occurs, which of the tribes is intended. It was probably the Cushite tribe, which was employed in trade. The "travelling companies" of Dedan are mentioned by Isa 21:13. They are also named with the merchants of Tarshish by Eze 38:13, and were celebrated on account of their trade with the Phoenicians.
(2.) A son of Jokshan, Abraham's son by Keturah (1Ch 1:32). His descendants settled on the Syrian borders about the territory of Edom. They probably led a pastoral life.
Son of Raamah, son of Cush (Ge 10:7), brother of Sheba. A second Dedan is son of Jokshan, son of Keturah (Ge 25:3), and is brother of a second Sheba. The recurrence of the same names points to an intermarriage between the Cushite (Ethiopian, rather Hamitic) Dedan and the Semitic Dedan, which is referred to as Edomite (Jer 49:8; 25:23; Eze 25:13; Isa 21:13, "ye traveling companies (merchant caravans) of Dedanim".)
The Cushite Dedan near the head of the Persian gulf and Chaldaea, the avenue of commerce to India, is referred to in Eze 27:15, as the names in the context prove; but Eze 27:20 Dedan is connected with N.W. Arabia, and associated with Assyria (Eze 27:23), i.e. the Semitic or Edomite Dedan, yet also connected with the Cushite "Sheba and Raamah" (Eze 27:22) on the Persian gulf. The Semitic Sabeans, descended from Sheba tenth son of Joktan, dwelt in S.W. Arabia, from the Red Sea to the straits of Bab el Mandeb. Ezekiel thus recounts the two channels of merchandise, Raamah on the Persian gulf, and Sheba on the Red Sea in Arabia. The name Dedan still remains in Dadan, an island on the border of the Persian gulf. (See RAAMAH)
A north Arabian people, according to Ge 10:7 descended from Cush, and according to Ge 25:3 from Abraham through Keturah. The combination is not difficult to understand when we remember the Arabian affiliations of the Cushites (cf. Isa 21:13). In Eze 25:13 Dedan is placed almost within the Edomite territory, which it must have bordered on the southeast (cf. Jer 25:23; 49:8). The Dedanites were among the Arabian peoples who sent their native wares to the markets of Tyre (Eze 27:20). In Eze 27:15 read 'Rodan' (Rhodians) for 'Dedan.'
J. F. McCurdy.