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The Daily Genealogist: Ananias

(Name Origins) Permanent link
Julie Helen Otto

Julie Helen Otto
Staff Genealogist

ANANIAS (m): In the Bible, this name is found only in the Book of Acts, where it is borne by at least three people of notably differing character:

(1) Ananias, husband of Sapphira. This covetous couple, members of an early Christian church in Jerusalem, sold land and kept back the proceeds, and when rebuked by St. Peter, were struck dead (5:1-5).
(2) Acts 23:2 and 24:1 mention Ananias the High Priest, who in 23:2 ordered that Paul be struck on the mouth, and in 24:2, "descended with the elders, and with a certain orator named Tertullus, who informed the governor against Paul."

Probably the Long Island families (especially the Conklins) who favored this name were thinking of

(3) “a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias” who, acting on a vision from God, laid hands on the blinded Saul/St. Paul and restored his sight, after the latter’s conversion on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:10-17), or (4) “one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt there” (Acts 22:12) [perhaps the same as (3)].

Ananias Conklin of Kings Swynford, Staffordshire; Nottingham; Salem, Mass.; and Southold, L.I. (TAG 21 [1944-45]: 48-58 had grandsons Ananias Conklin “Jr.” (East Hampton, L.I. ca. 1674-by 22 Oct. 1730) (Jeremiah and Mary [Gardiner] Conklin (TAG 21:58, 142-43); Ananias Conklin “Sr.” (Benjamin and Hannah [Mulford] Conklin (East Hampton, L.I. ca. 1672/3-by 26 Aug. 1740) (21:135), father (by wife Hannah Ludlam) of Ananias Conklin [Jr.], bp. East Hampton 21 Aug. 1708.

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