There are many speculations on where the term “lullaby” originated from. Some claim it comes from the idea of “lulling” a baby to sleep. Recently a stumbled across an alternative speculated origin of the term that I personally find fascinating.
The origin of the term “lullaby” comes from the words “Lilith-Abi” which means “Lilith, begone.” In some versions of Jewish folklore Lilith was Adam’s first wife (as in Adam and Eve) who takes out her vengeance on Adam by stealing children’s souls in the night. Lilith is often referred to as “The Howling One” and is regarded as a demon.
Further Background on Lilith According to Jewish Folklore:
Lilith was created by God to ease the loneliness of Adam. Lilith was molded from the same dust that God used to mold Adam. Adam desired to rule over Lilith whereas Lilith desired equality because they were created from the same dust. Adam was unpleased with Lilith’s strong-will and unwillingness to submit and they quarreled. Lilith left Adam and fled the Garden. God then sent three angels in pursuit Lilith. When the angels apprehended Lilith they commanded her to return to Adam. Lilith refused to return and vowed that she would claim her vengeance on Adam’s suppressive treatment of her by killing and stealing the souls of little children (including infants). The angels overpowered her, and she promised that if the mother hung an amulet (an ornament or small piece of jewelry thought to give protection against evil, danger, or disease) or talisman (an object, typically an inscribed ring or stone, thought to have magic powers and to bring good luck) over the baby she would pass over that cradle. The angels let her go and God created Eve from Adam’s rib (so she could not claim equality) to be his companion. Since this time it is thought that Lilith roams the world, howling her hatred of mankind (not to be confused with humankind), claiming her vengeance on the suppressive treatment she experienced.