Q. My understanding has always been that the Hebrew word HAM means black. As you know he was the second son of Noah whose descendants settled Egypt and Africa.
A. The Hebrew word for Ham (Cham) literally means hot, as in baked or cooked. Some feel it came to represent someone who’s skin has been darkened by exposure to the sun. The Hebrew word for the color black is cush, which is also the name of Ham’s first born son.
After the confusion of tongues in Genesis 11, most of Ham’s family moved to Africa. Cush and his descendants became the black Africans of today. Ham’s second son Mizraim is the patriarch of the Egyptian people.