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Michal
Michal
(/mɪˈxɑːl/; Hebrew: מיכל‎  [miˈχal]) was, according to the first Book of Samuel, the younger daughter of Saul, king of Israel, who loved and became the first wife of David, (1 Samuel 18:20–27) who later became king of Judah, and later still of the united Kingdom of Israel.

Contents

1 In the Bible 2 Legality of second marriage

2.1 Offspring

3 Michal
Michal
in poetry 4 Use as a name 5 Notes

In the Bible[edit] 1 Samuel 14:49 identifies Saul's elder daughter as Merab and younger daughter as Michal. Michal's story is recorded in the first Book of Samuel, where it is said in 1 Samuel 18:20 and 18:28 that Michal
Michal
loved David. The narrative does not indicate whether this is reciprocated.[2] After his success in battle against the Philistine giant Goliath, Merab was given in marriage to Adriel. Later, after Merab had married Adriel the Meholathite, Saul
Saul
invited David
David
to marry Michal. David
David
replied, "I am a poor and lightly esteemed man", meaning that he was unable to provide a bride price. Saul
Saul
then advised him that no bride price was required except for the foreskins of 100 Philistines. David
David
took part in a further battle, killed 200 Philistines, and brought their foreskins to Saul
Saul
as a double bride price. In the biblical narrative, Michal
Michal
chooses the welfare of David
David
over the wishes of her father. When Saul's messengers search for David
David
in order to kill him, Michal
Michal
sends them away while pretending he is ill and laid up in bed. She lets David
David
down through a window and hides teraphim in his bed as a ruse.[3] J. Cheryl Exum points out that although she risked her life in helping him, after he leaves the court, he makes no attempt to contact her.[3] While David
David
was hiding for his life, Saul
Saul
gave Michal
Michal
as a wife to Palti, son of Laish, and David
David
took several other wives, including Abigail.[4] Later, when David
David
became king of Judah and Ish-bosheth (Michal's brother, and Saul's son) was king of Israel, David
David
demanded her return to him in return for peace between them. Ish-bosheth complied, despite the public protests of Palti.[5] Robert Alter observes that by stressing that he had paid the requested bride price, David
David
makes a legal argument as a political calculation to reinforce his legitimacy as a member of the Royal house. Alter notes the contrast between David's measured negotiations and Palti's public grief.[6] After Michal
Michal
was returned to David, she criticised him for dancing in an undignified manner, as he brought the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
to the newly captured Jerusalem
Jerusalem
in a religious procession.[7] For this she is punished, according to Samuel, with not having children till the day she dies [8] Unlike Abigail
Abigail
and Bathsheba, Michal
Michal
is not described as being beautiful, though Rabbinic tradition holds that she was of "entrancing beauty."[9] Legality of second marriage[edit] These events have raised moral issues within Judaism, especially in the context of the prohibition in Deuteronomy 24:1–4. On the one hand, some argue that it is prohibited to re-establish a marriage with a previous spouse who has subsequently remarried. On the other hand, other commentators explain that David
David
had not divorced Michal
Michal
at this point in time, but rather Saul
Saul
acted to break their marriage by marrying her off to another without David's consent.[10] On that view, they were not technically divorced as David
David
had not issued a writ of divorcement according to biblical law. Offspring[edit] It is unclear whether Michal
Michal
died barren and childless, as stated in 2 Samuel 6:23, or had children, as described in most manuscripts[11] of 2 Samuel 21:8, which mention "the five sons of Michal
Michal
the daughter of Saul". Gill attempted to resolve the contradiction by translating 2 Samuel 21:8 as "the five sons of Michal
Michal
the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite". Now, Merab, Michal's older sister, was the wife of Adriel (1 Samuel 18:19). According to Gill, these five sons were not born to Michal
Michal
but were brought up or educated by her after Merab perhaps had died; i.e., Merab brought them forth, and Michal
Michal
brought them up. [12] However, the Hebrew word, ילדה, which Gill understands to mean "brought up," everywhere else means "gave birth to." Michal
Michal
in poetry[edit]

In 1707, Georg Christian Lehms
Georg Christian Lehms
published in Hanover
Hanover
the novel Die unglückselige Princessin Michal
Michal
und der verfolgte David
David
('The hapless Princess Michal
Michal
and David
David
pursued', based on the Biblical story. In her poem "Michal", the Israeli poet Ra'hel Bluwstein
Ra'hel Bluwstein
draws a parallel between the speaker and Michal:

"Like you I am sad, O Michal
Michal
... and like you doomed to love a man whom I despise." (Poem "Michal" in her book Flowers of Perhaps.) Use as a name[edit] "Michal" was one of the Biblical names embraced by Zionism, very rarely found in pre-Zionist communities. It is a very common female first name in contemporary Israel. Although possessing an identical or almost identical spelling when using the Latin alphabet, the Czech and Slovak language
Slovak language
"Michal" and the Polish language
Polish language
"Michał" (popular male given names) are the local forms of "Michael" rather than of "Michal". This can be compared to French spelling "Michel", which is also a local form of "Michael".

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Michal.

Notes[edit]

^ Ellen White, " Michal
Michal
the Misinterpreted," JSOT 31.4 [2007] 451 – 464. ^ In 1 Samuel 18:26, David
David
is "pleased ... to become the king’s son-in-law" but we are not told whether he was pleased to have married Michal. See Cohen, M., "The Transparency of Saul", European Judaism, volume 39, no. 1, 2006, for a comparison of the transparent presentation of Saul
Saul
and the opaqueness of David's character in 1 Samuel. ^ a b Exum, J. Cheryl. "Michal: Bible." Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia. 20 March 2009. Jewish Women's Archive ^ 1 Samuel 25:43–44 ^ 2 Samuel 3:13–16 ^ Alter, Robert (1981). "Characterization and the Art of Reticence". The Art of Biblical Narrative. London: George Allen & Unwin.  ^ 2 Samuel 6:14–22 ^ 2 Samuel 6:23 ^ Ginzberg, Louis. "The Family of David". The Legends of the Jews – via philologos.org.  ^ Though the Book of Deuteronomy attributes itself to the period of the Hebrews' Exodus from Egypt, many historians regard it as having been actually written during the late monarchy. David's appearing to be oblivious to the prohibition laid down in it seems additional evidence in support of such theories. ^ The New International Version of the bible uses Merab from two Hebrew and some Septuagint manuscripts but cites that most manuscripts say Michal ^ See John Gill commentary on 2 Samuel 21 Archived 2011-08-07 at the Wayback Machine.

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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 32797

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