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Saul the Levite and His Concubine: The “Allusive” Quality of Judges 19

In: Vetus Testamentum
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  • 1 The University of British Columbia, Dept. of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies, Vancouver, Canada
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It is without question that Judges 19 manifests an overt anti-Saul, pro-David bias, with a number of references (e.g., Gibeah; Bethlehem; Jebus; the dismembered concubine) that point clearly to each figure. At the same time, it features a handful of markers that elude easy explanation. These include the Levitical identity of the protagonist, the adulterous concubine, the reference to Ramah, the destination of “the House of Yahweh,” and the Ephraimite host. Rather than view these details as either secondary or unrelated to Saul, I propose that they also represent tools in service of the overarching anti-Saul polemic. More specifically, these markers reflect awareness of a Saul-based version of 1 Samuel 1-2. This proposal in turn sheds light on questions regarding the composition and transmission of a separate Saul complex.

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