Cain (Heb: Qayin (), Gk: Kain () ), whose name means "possession" is the elder son of Adam. The name is also translated to Kenites, a group of people living in the area between southern Palestine and the Sinai mountains. Moses' father-in-law belong to this tribe.

Abel is the second son of Adam. The Qur'an does not mention their names. In the Bible, Cain was jealous of his brother Abel and killed him. Hughes mentions some tradition concerning this killing:

"The occasion of the marking this offering is thus related, according to the common tradition in the East. Each of them being born with a twin-sister, when they were grown up, Adam, by God's direction, ordered Cain to marry Abel's twin-sister and Abel to marry Cain's; (for it being the common opinion that marriages ought not to be had in the nearest degrees of consanguinity, since they must necessarily marry their sister, it seemed reasonable to suppose they ought to take those of the remoter degree;) but this Cain refusing to agree to, because his own sister was the handsomest, Adam ordered them to make their offerings to God, thereby refering the dispute to His determination. The commentators say Cain's offering was a sheaf of the worst of his corn, but Abel's a fat lamb of the best of his flock. (Hughe's Dictionary of Islam, p. 2, quoting Sale's Koran, I., p.122)

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