Perhaps this had never bothered anyone in the past, but for someone like myself who delves into genealogy, the fact that there are family naming patterns is a great boon. Of course, we can go only so far back. But in any case, suddenly this question has come to bother me!
Reading the weekly parshiot in the Torah, I never seemed to be concerned before over the fact that everyone had a unique name! There was never another Avraham, Yitzchak, Yaakov, etc., so everyone was unique and there was no ambiguity in referring to anyone.
So at what point did people start to "recycle" names and why? Was it to memorialize a loved one or another honored person or rabbi?