Kinyras: The Divine Lyre

  Franklin, John Curtis. 2016. Kinyras: The Divine Lyre. Hellenic Studies Series 70. Washington, DC: Center for Hellenic Studies.

8. David and the Divine Lyre

In this chapter I shall argue that the First Temple’s sacred musical groups should be understood as imitating and perpetuating royally supported musical guilds of the kind known at Ugarit. The Ugaritic word n‘m, which we saw applied several times to royal and/or cultic singers, reappears of David himself—an appropriate designation both for Saul’s lyre-playing favorite, and David’s later role, when king, of praise-singer for Yahweh himself. The Bible preserves extremely rich evidence for understanding the early theology of the lyre, and for the reworking, within the evolving cult of Yahweh, of older Syro-Levantine ideas about the instrument’s powers. I shall argue, indeed, that David and Solomon inherited concepts that in Ugarit would have been associated precisely with the Divine Kinnaru. David in particular is our most vivid analogy for Kinyras and his involvement with Cypriot monarchy in the LBA.

David, Solomon, and the Ideals of Great Kingship

franklin fig12

Figure 12. Lyre-playing lion king with animal subjects. Ninth-century orthostat relief from Guzana (Tell Halaf). Drawn from Moortgat 1955 pl. 100–101.

The Mari texts and Amarna reliefs showed that the harem was an important locus of cosmopolitan musicality. The cultural influence of royal women also extended to the religious sphere when they imported native deities to a new home through interdynastic marriage. [32] One may compare the Hittite kings’ wholesale adoption of Hurrian and other gods, both from foreign wives and conquered peoples. [33] Solomon is said to have built cult-places for all (!) his wives’ gods, famously including the Astarte (Ashtoreth) of Sidon. [34] This phenomenon too is musically relevant, since such transferred deities, we have seen, could be accompanied by the appropriate cult personnel and ritual repertoire. [35] It is quite remarkable, therefore, to find the following legend in the Talmud:

According to Rabbinic tradition, Solomon’s marriage transpired on the very day the temple was consecrated, which was thereby overshadowed: the delights of Pharaoh’s daughter caused Solomon to oversleep, so that the morning sacrifice could not be carried out. From that day forward, it was said, God determined to overthrow Jerusalem. The tale must be related to the Rabbinic rejection of instrumental music following the city’s destruction in 70 CE, with an ‘original musical sin’ traced back to the very founding of the First Temple. [
37] Nevertheless, given the evidence from Mari, the legend is doubtless encrusted upon some genuine reminiscence of purposeful musical diversity in the monarchic period, very probably going back to Solomon himself.

Musical Management in the First Temple

A major state needed a system for the training and management of musicians. Traditionally the sacred musical groups were inaugurated by David to accompany the Ark’s removal to Jerusalem, and were perpetuated in service before the Tabernacle at its new home. [38] The ‘singers’ were divided into ‘families’ by specific instruments: the major groups were strings (kinnōr, nēbel), cymbals (meṣiltayīm), and trumpets (shofar). [39] Recall the designation of Ugaritian guilds, including perhaps the singers, as bn (‘sons of’), and the Bible’s representation of Jubal as an ultimate musical ancestor of lyre- and pipes-players. [40] The Bible’s implication of existing musical resources on which David could draw is corroborated by the extensive parallelism of the earliest specimens of Hebrew poetry, clearly akin to Ugaritian practice. [41] Such songs are evidently relics of an ancient epic cycle, cultivated at various league sanctuaries. [42] Some form of ‘family’ musical groups may already have served such sacred sites, and were simply repurposed by David. At such an early date, however, there is no reliable means of distinguishing ‘Israelite’ music from a Canaanite ‘background’. And with Solomon’s monumental new temple, it is not improbable that the music of Yahweh’s cult would have been ‘renovated’ in conformity with standards and practices of major Canaanite sanctuaries. [43] We have already seen that two of the musical leaders traditionally appointed by David—Heman and Ethan—probably represent Canaanite traditions of music, wisdom, and dance. [44] They are provided with complete Levitical genealogies by the Chronicler, but these will be later constructions. [45] Even if these figures are entirely legendary, and their founding position in the Chronicler represents an anachronistic insertion—comparable to the traditional attribution of psalms to David and Solomon—they do indicate “that Hebrew temple-music as such” might be recognized “as going back to early, pre-Israelite, sources.” [46]

A deeper pre-Davidic musical background is also assumed in Saul’s performance with the musical prophets. Samuel foretells that the young king-elect will have a remarkable encounter at Gibeath-elohim (‘Hill of God’):

The phenomenon of musical prophecy will be discussed below. [
49] Here I would emphasize that the ensemble’s make-up is not dissimilar to what David’s musical ‘families’ will offer, and which one must posit for Ugarit. [50] This array has been called a ‘Canaanite (temple) orchestra’, [51] although the Ugaritian texts and north Syrian ivories show that ‘Syro-Levantine’ would be the better term. [52] The famous cult-stand with musicians from Ashdod is a happy parallel here, given the Bible’s statement that there was a Philistine garrison at Gibeath-elohim. [53] The stand’s players match 1 Samuel closely: lyre, double-pipes, frame-drum, and perhaps cymbals. (But note that the lyre is round-based, probably reflecting the Philistines’ Aegean background. [54] ) Similar ensembles are often represented, with minor variations, in the corpus of Cypro-Phoenician bowls (phiálai), ranging from the tenth century to the sixth (see further Chapter 11).

The Kinnōr and the Divine Lyre

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Figure 13. Lyrist with animals and tree (‘Orpheus jug’). Philistine strainer-spout jug, Megiddo, ca. 1100. Jerusalem, IAA 13.1921. Drawn from Dothan 1982 fig. 21.1 (pl. 61).

The opening verses of Psalm 49 preserve a crucial first-person, professional perspective:

The psalmist goes on to deliver a universalizing meditation on the fragility of life and inevitability of death. But the prelude is readily detached: it is an introductory formula, like the many exhortations to song in other psalms, or the psalmists’ repeated invocations of Yahweh to “incline” to their song and so lend them his voice. [
80] Psalm 49, however, strikes an unusual note as a singer’s glancing self-portrait. He trumpets his public role and ability to command universal attention, before turning inwards to describe his prophetic process through the lyre. What exactly is involved is clarified by a cognate passage in Psalm 78, which, after an almost identical beginning, carries on:

Even if Psalm 49 is relatively late, perhaps post-monarchic, [
82] the parallel formulae in Psalm 78 indicate that the lyre-singer is assuming a traditional stance as custodian of an ancient lyric art of prophecy. He both reproduces the often obscure lore of his predecessors, and recasts it in his own terms. While he presents interpretations of the “dark sayings,” he equally re-riddles what he has received to “disclose” admonitory puzzles of his own.

A key component of the psalmodists’ enigmatic pronouncements was the inherited technique of parallelism, which permitted both singer and audience to construct multi-directional and semantically productive correspondences between verse cola. Psalm 49:3–4 itself appropriately exemplifies the technique, schematizing, as A. N. Palmer nicely puts it,

In support of Palmer’s view that as the invocation progresses the psalmodist’s voice becomes that of Yahweh, note that it is normally the latter to whom the expression “incline the ears” is applied in the Psalms. [
84] If this is right, it places the phrase “in the lyre” in a rather more startling light. The emphasis would be less on the psalmodist using the lyre and its music to communicate with Yahweh, than on Yahweh placing his message into the lyre, from which the singer must attempt to extract it. In doing so, however, Yahweh himself becomes a kind of lyrist, so that the human lyre-prophet is attempting to replicate the song and message that God has devised for him. We are reminded of the balang-god of Ningirsu, visualized as a singer, with his communication to the human realm enabled precisely by the instrument of which he is the spirit.

While parallelistic composition is well known from Ugaritian poetry and early songs embedded in the Bible itself, the aforementioned Psalm verses are uniquely precious for vouchsafing a connection with professional lyric, and explicitly acknowledging the deep antiquity of the tradition. Again we must thank the Orpheus jug for linking the Biblical psalmists with this older cultural milieu. Given this ancient background, one must be struck by the direct invocation of the lyre in Psalm 108 (1–3):

I will sing and make melody.Awake, my soul!
Awake, O kinnōr and nēbel!I will awake the dawn.
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;I will sing praises to you among the nations.

These passages are remarkable for their relatively precise practical descriptions of the arts of musical prophecy and catharsis. Music is transformative, purifying, but only by evoking through performance the “spirit of the Lord”—on behalf of whom the kinnōr-singer not only speaks (the literal sense of ‘prophet’), but acts.

King, Kinnōr, and the “Spirit of God”

Mutatis mutandis, the conception of an inspired performer activating the powers of the kinnōr in service to Yahweh strongly recalls the Sumerian material, discussed above, notably the divinized balang, servant to the master-god Ningirsu, whose epiphany is effected through performances conducted symbolically, and perhaps literally, by the king. In the Biblical narrative, playing the kinnōr is a kingly virtue. But whereas Saul merely prophesies among the musicians, David himself wields the lyre, as though this puts him ‘in closer touch’ with God. And of course David himself was traditionally prophetic, his medium being precisely the kinnōr-accompanied psalm (see further below).

Performing the Divine Lyre

The traditions about the musical nature of the ritual are of considerable interest. The three accounts basically agree on its guildic nature, with massed players of kinnōr, nēbel, frame-drummers, and other instruments. [115] Apparently the song and dance is executed by these same performers (at least those whose mouths were free). The Chronicler asserts the involvement of Chenaniah, the ‘Chief Singer’. [116] Of David’s own participation Josephus paints a most vivid picture:

More interesting still is his account of the parade’s resumption:

These details are not purely Josephus’ own invention. He is clearly interpreting the Septuagint version, on which he mainly relied, and which here certainly preserves an old form of the tradition. [
119] The LXX also has seven choruses, carrying the Ark. [120] The statement that “David struck up (anekroúeto) the music” was rightly interpreted by Josephus to mean that he led the procession with his ‘kinýra,’ for the verb clearly implies a stringed-instrument. [121] The idea is further supported by the king’s position “among harmonized/tuned-up instruments” (en orgánois hērmosménois), an expression that foregrounds the ensemble’s chordophones. [122] Eusebios espouses the same interpretation, and draws attention to David’s position as musical leader of his own musical leaders. [123]

The parallels from Ebla, Emar, Hattusha, Ugarit, and elsewhere for musical parades and the ritual use of sevens make David’s Ark-procession perfectly plausible as an historical event, and suggest that the surviving accounts preserve actual details from the occasion, and/or its periodic reenactment in the royal cult. [136] They amount to, and/or derive from, a descriptive ritual. [137] One may compare the detailed ritual actions that are incorporated into a text like Aqhat. [138] (By contrast, the Emar ritual is strictly prescriptive. [139] ) Yet descriptive rituals need not be mere literary productions. They could also be functional, “quasi-canonical models, or manuals for the operation of the temple cults.” [140] That some such account of the Davidic ritual was composed at a near contemporary date would accord with the theory of a unified Ark-narrative, and explain the existence of the Bible’s more literary narratives, for which it could have been a source at however many removes. It would also provide an attractive practical explanation for why the ritual actions of Solomon and Hezekiah share three structuring elements with those of David. All three rituals include seven-magic alongside song-acts governing the establishment, building, or maintenance of the cult center. The continuity between these events is made explicit. Solomon’s completion of the Temple is seen as the fruition of David’s own vision; the Levites minister “with instruments for music … that King David had made for giving thanks to the Lord.” [141] Hezekiah’s musicians were stationed, says the Chronicler, “according to the commandment of David.” [142]

The parallels strongly suggest that David based his actions upon earlier Canaanite rituals, products of the same cultural environment that inspired or dictated his musical reorganization. [143] With this we may consider more closely the musical dimension of David’s own performance. The king sings, dances, and plays the kinnōr before Yahweh, at the head of all his subjects, in front even of his own priests, musicians, guild leaders, and the Chief Singer himself. As a victory procession for Yahweh, David plays the role of ‘royal’ praise-singer, not unlike the position he had actually held under Saul. But as a victorious king himself, this was equally his own triumph, so that David assumes a position analogous to that of Yahweh. The ritual is a remarkable practical application of what, in the Sumerian texts, can otherwise appear a rather poetic conceit: the king who excels his own singers, and executes state rituals single-handedly. It also fleshes out the Ugaritian ritual texts, where the king dominates the action, yet the cultic establishment was fully involved. [144] David’s performance, I suggest, is as close as we are likely to come to witnessing the Divine Lyre in action. Here more than anywhere the kinnōr is a powerful symbol of the king’s divine favor. But the practicality of the lyre tradition makes the kinnōr more than just a symbol. It was the actual instrument with which to cross the chasm separating human and divine. With it, a king could communicate queries, receive instruction, and channel divine power toward specific ends.

To conclude, David’s kinnōr is an integral part of the early narratives about the rise of the United Monarchy. David’s entrance in 1 Samuel is motivated by Saul’s need to find a kinnōr-player. He advances because “the Lord is with him,” and no longer with Saul. This power is expressed through the kinnōr in David’s catharses of Saul and his ‘victory procession’ for Yahweh. The lyre’s ability to serve as a pivotal narratological device derives from the instrument’s more ancient potency in the royal cults of the wider region. David is not merely a king who happens to play the kinnōr. He is king in large part because he plays it, incomparably well. This will be a crucial comparandum for understanding Kinyras of Cyprus.

Sweet Psalmist of Israel: David’s Lyric Legacy

The same contexts could also provide a good home for the famous song, supposedly the dying words of David himself, at the end of 2 Samuel. It begins:

Scholars have dated this song variously between David’s demise and the late Judaean monarchy, with a strong case for an early origin on the grounds of diction and content. [
153] But an absolute date is less vital here than how David is represented. According to the traditional reading of the MT, zmrt is to be vocalized as zĕmīrôt, ‘songs’ (< P-S √zmr, ‘sing/play’ [154] ), while nĕʿîm comes from the root n‘m (‘sweet, pleasant, gracious’)—whence “Sweet Psalmist of Israel” in the King James Version and its adherents. Now a musical interpretation goes back at least to the Hellenistic period, being reflected in the Septuagint translation, the importance of which to the tradition we have seen. [155] But with modern appreciation of parallelism, it has become clear that the phrase should be equivalent to the description of David as “Anointed of the God of Jacob.” Hence, most scholars now abandon a musical reading to vocalize zmrt as zimrāt and connect it with Semitic cognates relating to ‘power’ and ‘protection’ (< P-S √d mr). [156] Similarly, nĕʿîm is interpreted in terms of the n‘m which we saw applied to gods and heroes in Ugaritian texts. [157] Therefore, nĕʿîm zimrat yiśrā’ēl can be well rendered as ‘Favorite of the Mighty One of Israel’, ‘Favorite of the Defense of Israel’, or the like. [158]

The temporal disparity between the Ugaritian texts and 2 Samuel 23:1 on the one hand, and the late evidence for David as Yahweh’s praise-singer in paradise on the other, is of course enormous. Yet the intervening period is at least partially spanned by a living tradition of psalm-singing. Note for instance the bird-headed finials on the instruments of the captive Judaean musicians from the reign of Hezekiah, shown on a relief of Sennacherib (704–681)—a decorative feature going back to the LBA, with parallels from Egypt, Cyprus, and the Hittite world. [165] A fundamental justification for the later attribution of psalms to David must have been the continued importance of the kinnōr in the cult. A specific connection with David is seen in those psalms that, when not authentic, nevertheless adopt as a performative stance his persona as kinnōr-playing prophet-king, mouthpiece of Yahweh, and thus a kind of divine messenger. [166] This Davidic guise probably arose in the context of the royal rituals by which the House of David maintained its founder’s ideological legacy. Although ensemble playing is sometimes specified for various psalms, it is probable that they were equally performed in a Davidic manner—that is, by an individual kinnōr-player, or one who led an ensemble, as David was said to have done in the ark-­procession. A psalmist who performed such songs in these circumstances will have effectively reenacted the ancient king. This would further explain the traditions of the song-writing Solomon, just as Ishme-Dagan repeated the musical claims of Shulgi. [167] The Qumran texts—whose many psalms, entirely absent from the canonical Psalters (LXX/MT) yet sharing much of their diction, show the tradition flourishing post-exile—include songs attributed to Mannaseh, an otherwise unnamed “King of Judah” (Hezekiah?), and perhaps David himself (‘the Man of God’). [168]

The traditional reenactment of David seems one of the clearer legacies of the Divine Lyre. The instrument’s magical qualities certainly rang on in the corpus. In Psalm 98, one finds the same ancient conception represented by the Orpheus jug—the lyrist exercising control over the natural world:

The universal glorification of Yahweh is itemized in greater detail in Psalm 148, where the kinnōr, though not explicitly mentioned, is implied by the parallel of Psalm 98 and the genre itself:

These Psalms show that the praise-singing lyrist, while but one instantiation of a more cosmic exultation that also included every form of musical celebration, [
171] nevertheless plays a privileged role, occupying an intermediate, focusing position between the natural world and the divine object of its praise. It is this power which eventually facilitated David’s absorption of Orphic qualities in the Byzantine period. [172]

franklin fig14

Figure 14. Coin of the Bar Kokhba revolt (132–136 CE). Bible Lands Museum, Jerusalem, 5651. Drawn from SAM no. 133–134.

The legendary musical powers of David and Solomon persisted through antiquity and beyond in the Jewish, Greek Christian, Syrian Christian, and Arabic traditions alike.

Despite the lateness of these texts, their details go well beyond what is obvious in the Bible itself. Nor can they be dismissed by appeal to later Hellenistic influence. The persistence of these traditions about magical music and David’s inspired lyre is best explained as having been reinforced by the widespread and deeply rooted indigenous lyre-cultures whose prestige and power is so vividly epitomized by the cult of Kinnaru at Ugarit—and the rich mythology of Kinyras, to whom we may finally turn.


[ back ] 1. 1 Chronicles 6:1–32, 15:16–24, 25:1–31; Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 8.94, 176. See generally Engel 1870:277–365; Behn 1954:53–62; AOM:282–312 (Kraeling and Mowry); Wegner 1950:38–44; North 1964; Sendrey 1969; Sendrey 1974:98–103; Polin 1974:49–76 passim.

[ back ] 2. AOM:291 (Kraeling and Mowry); references in North 1964:373n3; Weitzman 1997:101–102; MAIP:107–108, 115–116.

[ back ] 3. PIW 2:79–81; de Vaux 1961:382; Myers 1965:111–112.

[ back ] 4. For compelling arguments against Biblical minimalists and archaeological skeptics, see Halpern 2004, especially 57–72, 208–226.

[ back ] 5. See p116–119, 129, 146–147. For this view, see especially Albright 1956:125–129; YGC:249–253; cf. de Vaux 1961:382–383; Levine 1963a:211–212; Tsumura 1973:176–178.

[ back ] 6. 1 Samuel 8:20, cf. 5.

[ back ] 7. 2 Kings 24:13–25:21.

[ back ] 8. See Ellenbogen 1962:67, 78–79, 89; Stieglitz 1990:89n52, proposing Ebla as the intermediary for the passage of such terms to the west; Metzger and Coogan 1993 s.v. Temple; Dalley et al. 1998:61.

[ back ] 9. 1 Kings 10:11–25. For the dynamics of royal gift-exchange, see generally Liverani 1990.

[ back ] 10. For the controversies surrounding the nature and stature of the First Temple, see Mierse 2012:249–254, 262–267, who convincingly situates Solomon’s building program between LBA traditions and the novel political conditions of the EIA.

[ back ] 11. Fisher 1963:40–41, compares the seven days required for the building of Baal’s palace, also from Lebanese cedar: KTU/CAT 1.4 vi.16–33 (= RS 2.[008]+).

[ back ] 12. 1 Kings 6:37–38, 9:11.

[ back ] 13. 1 Kings 5, with cedars at 6–10, 18 (acquired through gift-exchange), 6:15–16, 7:2, 9:10–14, cf. 2 Samuel 7:7, 1 Chronicles 17:6, 22:4 (David’s provision for “cedar logs without number” acquired from the Sidonians and Tyrians). Cedars in the palace of David: 2 Samuel 7:2; 1 Chronicles 17:1; palace of Solomon: 1 Kings 7:2–3, 11–12. Cedars from Lebanon, paid for by Cyrus the Great, were also used for the Second Temple: Ezra 3:7, 6:4.

[ back ] 14. Mierse 2012:265.

[ back ] 15. 1 Kings 4.

[ back ] 16. The huge menu required for Solomon’s men (1 Kings 4:22–28; cf. de Vaux 1961:122) calls to mind the Old/Middle Assyrian text about the retainers of Sargon the Great: Foster 2005:71–75 (§ I.6). For gift-giving, note also 10:23–25.

[ back ] 17. 1 Kings 4:30, cf. 10:23–25; Queen of Sheba: 1 Kings 10:1–3.

[ back ] 18. 1 Kings 4:31–34.

[ back ] 19. Dalley et al. 1998:74.

[ back ] 20. See above, p33–35. For a detailed comparison, Kramer 1991.

[ back ] 21. Psalms of Solomon: PIW 2:118–120. Odes of Solomon: e.g. Franzmann 1991:5–7.

[ back ] 22. Albright 1956:127 and 210n96 (“members of the orchestral guild,” deriving maḥôl from ḥwl, ‘to circle’); followed by de Vaux 1961:382 (“sons of the choir”); YGC:251–252 (quotation); for root and other derivatives, see with further references MAIP:39–40; Mazar 2003:126. One may note here the possible appearance of Baal as a dancing god: Baal Marqod, attested in a third-century BCE inscription, and derived from WS √rqd, ‘skip/dance’ (Sendrey 1969:441; Tubb 2003:12l; Mazar 2003:126). But this interpretation has been well challenged by DDUPP:115–116.

[ back ] 23. Albright 1956:14, 126–129; PIW 2:80–81, 95–97 YGC:250–253. Cf. Cogan 2000:222, “The context suggests that they were non-Israelites.” In the heading of Psalms 88, Heman is made an Ezrahite; at 1 Chronicles 2:6 “Zimri, Ethan, Heman, Calcol, Dara” [i.e. Darda] are the “Sons of Zerah,” hence all interpreted as ‘Ezrahites’ by Albright 1956:127 and 210n95 (noting especially Numbers 9:14 and the Septuagint’s regular translation of ’ezraḥ as αὐτόχθων); cf. Cogan 2000:222. Albright (YGC:250 and n125) connected ‘Ethan’ with several instances of the Ugaritic name ’Atyn, which he vocalized as Attuyana and considered of Hurrian origin; cf. Albright 1956:127. Note also ’Attanu, the “Chief Priest … the adept” (lmd . ’atn rb | khnm), named alongside king and scribe in the colophon of CTA 6.6.54–55, and evidently “the master singer who dictated to the scribe”: see Cross 1974:1n1; Cross 1998:139–140.

[ back ] 24. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.12.3: Ἀπηλλαγμένος δ᾽ ἤδη πολέμων ὁ Δαυίδης καὶ κινδύνων καὶ βαθείας ἀπολαύων τὸ λοιπὸν εἰρήνης ᾠδὰς εἰς τὸν θεὸν καὶ ὕμνους συνετάξατο.

[ back ] 25. See RlA 4:54 (Hrouda, *Ḥalaf, Tell) with further references.

[ back ] 26. Moortgat 1955:95–98 and pl. 100–101; HKm:72 with pl. 14 no. 42 and further references.

[ back ] 27. See p300.

[ back ] 28. David: 1 Samuel 19:36; Solomon: Ecclesiastes 2:8, reflecting a traditional view of Solomon, to whom the work was attributed: cf. de Vaux 1961:121–122.

[ back ] 29. For the ideology, see especially Ziegler 1999.

[ back ] 30. ARAB 2:143 §312; CS 2:119B. These can be connected with the captive lyrists shown in the emperor’s reliefs depicting the siege of Lachish (BM 124947): see inter al. PIW 2:80 (interpreting as temple-singers); Rimmer 1969:34; MgB 2/2:122 and pl. 142; Oded 1979:101 and n179; DCPIL:49 (questioning the identification as Judaean); Cheng 2001:74–75; my Figure 5.8f. Hebrew accounts of the events: 2 Kings 18:13–37, Isaiah 36:1–2; cf. Herodotos 2.141.

[ back ] 31. 1 Kings 11:1–3. See generally de Vaux 1961:115–117.

[ back ] 32. Liverani 1990:221, 224–225, 274–282.

[ back ] 33. See e.g. Bryce 2002:135–136 et passim.

[ back ] 34. 1 Kings 11:4–8. This datum has been important (e.g. Kramer 1963; Kramer 1969:85–106) to the tradition of interpreting the Song of Songs as deriving at some remove from hierogamic ritual—e.g. borrowed during the time of Solomon from Canaanite royal practice, itself more or less influenced by Sumerian/Babylonian archetypes. For this long-contested issue, see recently Lapinkivi 2004:91–98 (developing further parallels with Mesopotamian love-poetry), and especially Nissinen 2008, tracing the history of debate.

[ back ] 35. See p100–102.

[ back ] 36. Shabbath 56b = BT 2:264.

[ back ] 37. Cf. LJ 4:128–129, 6:280–281 n12–13 with further references; SOM 1:553–571 (including the more moderate stance of Maimonides).

[ back ] 38. 2 Samuel 6:5, 15; 1 Chronicles 6:1–32, 15:16–24, 28, 25:1–31; 2 Chronicles 7:6; cf. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 8.94, 176; Zonaras Epitome historiarum 1.116.3. The whole matter is well discussed by Kleinig 1993. David’s original organization is also invoked by the Chronicler in the context of Hezekiah’s reign, as well as Ezra and Nehemiah in describing the restoration of music in the Second Temple: 2 Chronicles 29:25; Nehemiah 12:27–47; cf. Ezra 2:41, 64, 3:10–13.

[ back ] 39. For the nēbel, see p52n26. The use of signal trumpets, for instance, is sure to be very ancient. For the silver instruments of Moses, Numbers 10:1–10; Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 3.12. Note that a disbursement of silver to decorate musical horns is found at Ebla: Tonietti 2010:80–81. There are also Egyptian representations from the NK (Myers 1965:113), and actual specimens have been found in the tomb of Tutankhamun (Manniche 1976) and in the Uluburun wreck (ca. 1300: Pulak 1998:205); cf. MAIP:14–16. Note too the Talmudic tradition that there had been in the temple a pipe and cymbals from the time of Moses: ‘Arakin 10b = BT 16:58.

[ back ] 40. See p43–44, 115.

[ back ] 41. E.g. the ‘Song of Miriam’ (Exodus 15), the ‘Song of Deborah’ (Judges 5), the ‘Oracles of Balaam’ (Numbers 23–24), the ‘Song of Moses’ (Deuteronomy 32), etc. Relative dating schemes for these and other songs have been attempted: see inter al. YGC:1–28, 42–52; Freedman 1976. While their methodology might be refined by the development of further criteria, Albright’s basic principle remains valid: the Ugaritian texts show that extensive parallelism is an archaic feature of Hebrew poetry. Pardee 1988b, Appendix I (168–192) provides a good overview of trends in research to that date; note especially the call for situating Ugaritian and Hebrew parallelism in a larger, hence more ancient, Semitic context, which should include Aramaic, Akkadian, and other evidence (174–175).

[ back ] 42. Cross 1973, especially 79–144.

[ back ] 43. Cf. de Vaux 1961:382, “It is not too bold to think that the first choir of singers for the Temple at Jerusalem was recruited from among non-Israelites.” One should recall here the controversial Jebusite hypothesis: the high priest Zadok was retained from a priestly family that had long presided at Jerusalem, and was only later outfitted with an Aaronid genealogy. This idea, elaborated by Rowley 1939, has won, despite vigorous challenges (Cross 1973:207–215, et al.), increasing support (with various modifications): see with further references Jones 1990:25, 40–42, 131–135, 151n35, 154n44; Albertz 1994:129, 295n7–8, with references.

[ back ] 44. See p152 and n22.

[ back ] 45. Cf. Cogan 2000:222: “by the time of the Chronicler [i.e. 1 Chronicles 2:6] they were given Israelite ancestry, as grandsons of Judah, taking the ‘Ezrahite’ to refer to Zerah son of Judah and Tamar.”

[ back ] 46. Albright 1956:128—stressing, however, that this does not itself “prove that David organized the first religious music of Israel.” Some of the extant psalms are also ascribed to them: Asaph (12), Heman (1), Ethan (1), and Jeduthun (3). Cf. de Vaux 1961:382; YGC:250.

[ back ] 47. For this instrument, see NG 3:525 and MGG 1:1514 (both Braun). It may be significant, as noted by Sellers 1941:41, that this its first Biblical attestation.

[ back ] 48. 1 Samuel 10:5–6.

[ back ] 49. See p161–165.

[ back ] 50. See p115–118. It is the same ensemble which Isaiah 5:11–12 attributes to the drinking parties of Jerusalem’s dissolute inhabitants—those “wild grapes” (5:2, 4) who “do not regard the deeds of the Lord” (5:12). The prophet has apparently redeployed the ‘orchestra’ appropriate for sacred performances into a profane context, parallel to his larger critique. The passage was understood along similar lines at Qumran, where Isaiah’s target was interpreted as the Essenes’ sectarian rivals in Jerusalem, “the congregation of Scoffers” (4Q162.6–10: DJD 5:15–16; Vermes 2011:499, with comments on 54, 61).

[ back ] 51. Bayer 1982:32; Poethig 1985:19, 23–27.

[ back ] 52. See p134-135, 267–268.

[ back ] 53. 1 Samuel 10.5. For the cult-stand, see Dothan 1970; Dothan 1982:249–251; Bayer 1982:32; Poethig 1985:23–27; MAIP:166–174; SAM:156–157 (no. 121).

[ back ] 54. See p250–251.

[ back ] 55. 1 Chronicles 15:22, cf. 27.

[ back ] 56. LXX: ἄρχων τῶν ᾠδῶν. A musical function is accepted by the NRSV. For the controversy, see recently with further literature Kleinig 1993:44–51; Leithart 2003:59–62.

[ back ] 57. 1 Chronicles 26:29.

[ back ] 58. 1 Samuel 16:23.

[ back ] 59. 1 Chronicles 23:5; 2 Chronicles 7:6; 29:26; Nehemiah 12:36; Amos 6:5; Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.305; Psalms 151:3 LXX.

[ back ] 60. See p76–77.

[ back ] 61. Antiquities of the Jews 8.94, 176, cf. 7.305; also 1 Kings 10:12, Solomon’s lyres from the exotic, still-unidentified almug wood (cf. Burgh 2006:24).

[ back ] 62. Cf. PIW 2:80–81.

[ back ] 63. An accessible introduction is Friedman 1987.

[ back ] 64. See inter al. YGC; Smith 1990.

[ back ] 65. Jirku 1963.

[ back ] 66. Cooper 1981:385.

[ back ] 67. DDD col. 912.

[ back ] 68. IAA 13.1921, strainer-spout jug, Megiddo stratum VIA, ca. 1100: Loud 1936:1110, fig. 9, 11–12; Rutten 1939:442–443 and fig. 11; Dothan 1982:150–153 and fig. 21.1 (pl. 61); SAM:111 (no. 71). Note the ribbons or bands that hang from the musician’s waist and legs, presumably ceremonial and recalling the betasseled lyrist on the roughly contemporary Kouklia kalathos from near Paphos, and a swordsman on a shard from Lefkandi (LH IIIC): Deger-Jalkotzy 1994:21 and 18 fig. 4.3; cf. p255. Yet further non-musicians are so adorned on another Megiddo pot (level VIIA), so that perhaps this element “merely reflects local iconographic tradition” (Dothan 1982:150).

[ back ] 69. So already Loud 1936:1110, fig. 9: “suggestive of Orpheus, but from a site more associated with David”; Dothan 1982:150–153.

[ back ] 70. Yasur-Landau 2008: “The subtle message of the vase is conveyed by referring the owner and his drinking guests to a well-known ANE mythological theme, celebrated for centuries in Canaanite Megiddo: the peaceful demonstration of the power of the goddess, represented by the sacred tree, the unity between man and nature, and music” (225).

[ back ] 71. So for this piece Dothan 1982:152; Keel 1998:39–40; Yasur-Landau 2008:224–225. For the Sacred Tree motif generally, see Danthine 1937 (fertility, 152–153, 157); Keel 1998; Keel and Uehlinger 1998, 232–236 et pass.; Giovino 2007 (doxographical review with emphasis on Assyrian iconography). For the motif’s reception on LBA Cyprus, see p386.

[ back ] 72. But note Bayer 1982:22–23.

[ back ] 73. See p153–154, 517–518. Cf. DCPIL:53.

[ back ] 74. See p181–184.

[ back ] 75. So rightly Mazar 1974:174–182 (Hebrew, non vidi), cited by Dothan 1982:152; also approved by MAIP:147.

[ back ] 76. This may explain the prescription of ‘gittith’ for the music of three Biblical psalms (Psalms 8, 81, and 84), which C. H. Gordon interpreted as “the instrument of Gath” (in the Philistine pentapolis). One of these psalms is attributed to David himself, and while this is probably anachronistic, it may well suggest that later generations of psalmodists were prepared to recognize a musical dimension to David’s fifteen-month sojourn among the Philistines (1 Samuel 27:1–6). See Gordon 1965b:225; cf. MAIP:39, suggesting “style” of Gath as an alternative. If an openness to Philistine music-culture seems unlikely in view of the Bible’s generally hostile stance, one could see this as a case of appropriating the musical symbols of a defeated people, comparing the situation in Shulgi’s Ur or NK Egypt: see p36–37, 105–111.

[ back ] 77. DDD col. 912 (Wyatt).

[ back ] 78. See Mullen 1980:209–226, 279, 283.

[ back ] 79. Psalms 49:1–4, with translation in 3–4 following the LXX: ‘disclose’ reflects ἀνοίξω and the literal ‘open’ of the Hebrew (< √ptḥ), cf. NRSV ‘solve’, Palmer 1993:377, ‘utter’. For this and the other key Hebrew words, notably the range of māšāl and ḥîdāh, see van der Ploeg 1963:145; Richards 1985:508. The potential relevance of these verses to Kinnaru was noted by Wyatt (DDD col. 912).

[ back ] 80. While most of the Psalms implicitly fulfill one or both of these functions, the following are notably explicit. Musical exhortations: Psalms 33:1–3, 47:1, 61:1–2, 66:1–2, 81:1–2, 95:1–2, 96:1–2, 98:1–2, 105:1–2, 147:1, 149:1, 150:1–6. Epicletic formulas: 4:1, 5:1–2, 34:1, 77:1, 80:1, 83:1, 86:1, 88:1–2, 89:1, 92:1–3, 101:1, 102:1–2, 116:1–2, 120:1, 130:1–2, 141:1, 142:1–2, 143:1.

[ back ] 81. Psalms 78:2–3.

[ back ] 82. So van der Ploeg 1963:138–139.

[ back ] 83. Palmer 1993:377–378, with additional analysis, followed by application to the poetics of St. Ephraim, for whom cf. p61 above.

[ back ] 84. Cf. van der Ploeg 1963:144.

[ back ] 85. DDD col. 912 (Wyatt), adducing the Rāp’iu text as a parallel (for which see p134–135).

[ back ] 86. 1 Samuel 19:20–24; 1 Chronicles 25:1 (“David and the officers of the army also set apart for the service the sons of Asaph, and of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with kinnōr, nēbel and with cymbals”), with 1 Chronicles 15:16–24 (David’s appointment of musicians from the Levites) and 25:3–6; 2 Chronicles 5:12, 20:21–23. Musical prophecy may be implicit at 1 Samuel 19:20–24; Psalms 49:2–5, with the lyre: see below; Ezekiel 40:44–46. For earlier times cf. Exodus 15:20–21; Deuteronomy 31:19–22 (of Moses). See generally Sendrey 1969:481–489, 507–515; Shiloah 1993:58–59.

[ back ] 87. 2 Chronicles 20:22–23.

[ back ] 88. 2 Kings 3:13–20.

[ back ] 89. This was seen by St. Ephraim: non quodcumque, sed habens harmoniam in chordis designat; ut ex Hebraeo verti posset, cinnaram (Latin translation: Assemani 1732–1746 1:524 A). Cf. DDD col. 912 (Wyatt).

[ back ] 90. PIW offered a seminal corrective.

[ back ] 91. See p178–179.

[ back ] 92. Albright 1940:296–297 and n45 seems to have inferred something very similar even before the recognition of Kinnaru. After noting that Kinyras had absorbed aspects of Kothar (see further Chapter 18), and tersely asserting the accuracy of his name’s connection with kinýra, Albright wrote: “There are many striking confirmations and illustrations of this derivation, with which I hope to deal later. One of the most remarkable parallels, hitherto unrecognized, comes from Hebrew tradition … A great deal more can be said on this subject, but it must be reserved for a more suitable occasion.” I do not know that he ever presented his ideas in more than desultory remarks (cf. Albright 1964:171n47; YGC:144n91, 147 and n102).

[ back ] 93. See p93–94.

[ back ] 94. Cf. 1 Samuel 16:14: “Now the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him.”

[ back ] 95. 1 Samuel 16:14–23.

[ back ] 96. 1 Samuel 16:16.

[ back ] 97. Lyre catharses are well-attested in Greek tradition with Orpheus, Pythagoras, etc.: cf. Franklin 2006a:59–60; Power 2010:279–280, 381–385 et pass.; Provenza 2014.

[ back ] 98. 1 Samuel 16:18.

[ back ] 99. See p33–37.

[ back ] 100. Compare especially the Ugaritian PN *kṯrmlk, ‘Kothar-is-king’, born by a silversmith (RS 19.16 [PRU 5 no. 11], line 32, appearing in the Akkadianized form kšrmlk; cf. KwH:62 and 131n71). For Kothar and Kinyras, see Chapter 18.

[ back ] 101. Kebede 1977:380–381; cf. MGG 5:1032 [G. Kubik]). Note that in Ethiopic tradition the krar (< *kenar) is exclusively secular, “the devil’s instrument”: see p58n65.

[ back ] 102. Seow 1989:1.

[ back ] 103. 2 Samuel 6; 1 Chronicles 15–16; Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.78–89. For the probable allusion in Psalms 132, see Seow 1989:145–203.

[ back ] 104. Cross 1998:212 (quotation). See DJD 17:25–27: “The [sc. Qumran] fragments … confirm most emphatically the usefulness of the Old Greek for the establishment of a more nearly original Hebrew text.” Cross 1998:205–212, gives a good review of the ‘Old Greek’ text’s value, especially as a witness to Samuel; cf. also YGC:34–35. Further speculation about the earlier stages and interrelationships of the various textual traditions is best avoided here. For these complex problems, including the theory of the proto-Lucianic recension (whereby the ‘Old Greek’ text was “revised, with corrections and additions provided to make it conform to the 4QSam text tradition in contemporary Palestine,” Ulrich 1978:258), see e.g. the recent overview of Kauhanen 2012:13–23, with extensive bibliography.

[ back ] 105. Ulrich 1989:93 holds that Josephus did not use 1 Chronicles; material which they share can be explained by assuming that the Chronicler too used a version of 2 Samuel closer to the 4QSama/LXX versions than to the MT. Begg 1997, examining David’s transfer of the Ark specifically, argues for Josephus’ knowledge of the LXX Chronicler, but not the MT. Avioz 2015 now corroborates the historian’s use of both LXX and MT (or better MT forerunner): see especially 195–201, with previous literature on the debate (which will no doubt continue). Of course Josephus had his own voice in all this; for his larger exegetical concerns and methods, see inter al. the aforementioned studies of Begg and Avioz.

[ back ] 106. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.78.

[ back ] 107. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.79: συνελθόντος οὖν τοῦ λαοῦ παντός, καθὼς ἐβουλεύσαντο.

[ back ] 108. 2 Samuel 6:16 (quotation), 20–23; 1 Chronicles 15:29; Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.85–89.

[ back ] 109. 2 Samuel 6:13–17.

[ back ] 110. Cf. Seow 1989:97–104, who also detects a “blatantly clear … propagandistic intent” (102); Halpern 2004:333–340.

[ back ] 111. Campbell 1975, especially 193–210.

[ back ] 112. PIW 1:125–130, with Chapter V for the related ‘enthronement psalms’; Porter 1954.

[ back ] 113. Seow 1989, especially 207–209, with review of earlier interpretations on 2–8, arguing that Baal’s cult made its impression while the Ark was housed at Qiryat-Ye‘arim for about twenty years.

[ back ] 114. The incident of the driver, however, is suspicious: it seems designed to demonstrate Yahweh’s presence at the dangerous and enormous undertaking, and ultimately, when no further disaster befalls, to confirm the divine approval of David’s actions. Seow 1989:97–104 connects Yahweh’s wrath and the killing of Uzzah with a “dramatization of … mythological combat,” comparing “reenactments of cosmogonic battles … in state-sponsored rituals in Mesopotamia” (99).

[ back ] 115. There are variants in the tradition: LXX includes double-pipes (ἐν αὐλοῖς, 2 Samuel 6:5) and trumpet (μετὰ φωνῆς σάλπιγγος, 6:15); the MT (6:5) has mena‘an‘îm, interpreted as κύμβαλα in the LXX, sistra in the Vulgate, and variously by modern scholars: see MAIP:19.

[ back ] 116. 1 Chronicles 15:27. See p157.

[ back ] 117. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.80–81: προῆγε δ’ ὁ βασιλεὺς καὶ πᾶν σὺν αὐτῷ τὸ πλῆθος ὑμνοῦντες τὸν θεὸν καὶ ᾄδοντες πᾶν εἶδος μέλους ἐπιχώριον σύν τε ἤχῳ ποικίλῳ κρουσμάτων τε καὶ ὀρχήσεων καὶ ψαλμῶν ἔτι δὲ σάλπιγγος καὶ κυμβάλων κατάγοντες τὴν κιβωτὸν εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα. 2 Samuel 6:5 states only that “David played,” but is more specific as to guildic instrumentation.

[ back ] 118. Josephus Antiquities of the Jews 7.85: τὴν κιβωτὸν πρὸς αὑτὸν μετακομίζει, τῶν μὲν ἱερέων βασταζόντων αὐτήν, ἑπτὰ δὲ χορῶν οὓς διεκόσμησεν ὁ βασιλεὺς προαγόντων, αὐτοῦ δ’ ἐν κινύρᾳ παίζοντος (closely followed by Constantine Porphyrogenitos On Virtues and Vices 1 [55.16–22, Büttner-Wobst/Roos]).

[ back ] 119. Josephus and the LXX agree against not only the MT, but the Qumran text, the latter according rather with 1 Chronicles 15:26 (Ulrich 1978:182, 223–259, especially 235–236, 241; Ulrich 1989:88; Kauhanen 2012:34–35).

[ back ] 120. Wellhausen 1871:169 already saw that the seven χοροί must go back to an early Hebrew text.

[ back ] 121. 2 Samuel 6:13–14 LXX: καὶ ἦσαν μετ’ αὐτῶν αἴροντες τὴν κιβωτὸν ἑπτὰ χοροί … καὶ Δαυιδ ἀνεκρούετο ἐν ὀργάνοις ἡρμοσμένοις ἐνώπιον κυρίου κτλ. For ἀνακρούω and stringed instruments, see LSJ s.v. κρούω (5), κροῦμα (2), etc. Note also ἀνακρουόμενον at 6:16.

[ back ] 122. For the special relevance of ἁρμονία and related words (like ἡρμοσμένοις) to stringed-instruments, see Franklin 2003:301, 303–304.

[ back ] 123. Eusebios Commentaries on the Psalms, PG 23:73A: Δαυῒδ, αὐτὸς ἄρχων ἀρχόντων ᾠδῶν, κρατῶν ἐπὶ χεῖρας τὸ ψαλτήριον.

[ back ] 124. 2 Samuel 6:13; 1 Chronicles 15:26.

[ back ] 125. Text of the Installation of Baal’s High Priestess: Arnaud 1986 no. 369, superseded by Fleming 1992 (with new lineation); CS 1 no. 122. While other numbers, ‘significant’ and otherwise, are present in the ritual, the intentional concentration of sevens is obvious. There is an offering of one ox and six sheep (11, 36–37); “seven dinner-loaves, seven dried cakes” (11); seven and seven ḫamša’u-men eating (12–13); an unknown action lasts seven days (26); seven-fold wine and beer offerings (and some other non-seven offerings) are to be consumed by the seven qidašu and ḫussu-men (27–28, 38); the priestess is given a “seven-shekel silver tudittu-pin as her gift” when enthroned (44); a sacred axe is placed on a statue for seven days (46); various offerings are made over a seven-day period; some are consumed by the “seven and seven ḫamša’u-men” (49–59, cf. 54); each singer receives a share of sacrifice, sheepskins, and a dinner-load and jug of beer for seven days (79–83). Nor is this the only ritual text from Emar that combines seven-magic and song-acts: see Arnaud 1986 no. 388.51–52, 395.2’–4’. Cf. also RlA 12/5–6.464 §5.3 (Wiggerman, *Siebengötter).

[ back ] 126. Processions in the Installation of Baal’s High Priestess: lines 8, 29–36, 45, 62–64. Additionally, two hymns were specified (33A, 73); and the singers’ share of offerings and their payment were stipulated (79–84). The ritual also involved lamentation, probably for the death of the old priestess (Fleming 1992:173). There are many other references at Emar to the cult performances of singers, especially in connection with sacrificial ritual, as well as to female singers (zammirātū): see the discussion of Fleming 1992:92–94, with references; cf. SURS:313n861.

[ back ] 127. PHG:170–171.

[ back ] 128. Fleming 1992:93n81; Pongratz-Leisten 1994: 47; Cheng 2001:92n8; PHG:170.

[ back ] 129. Franklin 2008:198 with references.

[ back ] 130. E.g. in the KI.LAM festival, Singer 1983–1984 1:62. For Hittite occasions see further CANE 4:2661–2669 (de Martino).

[ back ] 131. See p40–41.

[ back ] 132. For example, that David was selected for kingship after his seven older brothers had been rejected (1 Samuel 16:10) is most simply explained as a narratological device and folklore motif; while it does derive special interest from David’s training as a lyrist, the two details are not explicitly connected in the text itself.

[ back ] 133. 1 Kings 8:2; 2 Chronicles 5:3, 11. Cf. PIW 1:174–175 and n176.

[ back ] 134. 2 Chronicles 29:21–28.

[ back ] 135. 2 Chronicles 29:27–28.

[ back ] 136. For the same conclusion on other grounds, see Seow 1989:209. For ritual re-enactment of the Ark-procession, PIW 1:174–175 (thinking rather of saga than a contemporary source for the original event).

[ back ] 137. For the term, see p67n35.

[ back ] 138. For which see Wright 2001 passim.

[ back ] 139. Fleming 1992:70.

[ back ] 140. Levine 1983:473.

[ back ] 141. 2 Chronicles 7:6.

[ back ] 142. 2 Chronicles 29:25.

[ back ] 143. See PIW 1:130–136 for further considerations.

[ back ] 144. See p113–114.

[ back ] 145. Cf. Campbell 1975:138–139.

[ back ] 146. 2 Samuel 6:21.

[ back ] 147. See Freedman 1976 generally, with discussion of the early song in 2 Samuel 22 at 75–77; for the latter’s transmission history, with the parallel Psalms 18, see McCarter 1984:473–475, with further references. For 2 Samuel 23:1–7, David’s swan-song, see p175–178. The attribution of certain psalms to the “Sons of Korah” (2 Chronicles 20:19; Psalms 42, 44–49, 84–85, 87–88) is made more credible by Korah’s relative obscurity in the Bible itself; for their Levitical descent, see Numbers 16:1–11 (but cf. 31–33); 1 Chronicles 6:22, 9:19, 9:31.

[ back ] 148. For Psalms 29, attributed to David, see Freedman 1976:60–61, 96, dating it to the twelfth century on stylistic criteria (“repetitive parallelism to an extraordinary extent,” 60).

[ back ] 149. See generally PIW 2:152–154. The antiquity of Psalms 132, a key text for the later royal cult (PIW 2:174–176), is defended by Cross 1973:94–97 (“reworked only slightly in the later royal cult,” 97, with archaic details enumerated in n24) and 232–237 (“our earliest witness to the Davidic covenant … lore of Davidic date,” 232).

[ back ] 150. 2 Samuel 1:19–27: see McCarter 1984:74, 77, 484 (also supporting the authenticity of the elegy to Abner at 2 Samuel 3:33–34); Cross 1998:137–138 (for typological analysis of its parallelism); Halpern 2004:64.

[ back ] 151. See p67–71, 134–146.

[ back ] 152. 2 Samuel 23:1–2, trans. and colometry of Cross 1973:235–236. For the text itself, of which the MT is the best witness, see Mettinger 1976–1977.

[ back ] 153. Those supporting a Davidic date include Albright 1956:126; Cross 1973:234–237 and n81 (of a piece with Psalms 132); Freedman 1976. McCarter 1984:483–486 lays out and convincingly meets the objections against an early date in dissenting literature, interpreting the psalm’s application of solar imagery to the king in terms of LBA Egyptian and Hittite royal usage. In his view (480–481, 483), the presentation of David as prophetic—dismissed as a late feature by some—can be excised as secondary and due to later messianic reinterpretations of the Psalms (cf. e.g. Acts 2:30). Yet the kinnōr is found not only in prophetic contexts of the ninth century, but earlier still with Saul and the band of musical prophets.

[ back ] 154. For this root, see p137 and n160.

[ back ] 155. There, however, one has εὐπρεπεῖς ψαλμοὶ Ἰσραήλ: David is the “seemly songs of Israel.”

[ back ] 156. Gaster 1936–1937; Cross and Freedman 1955:243n b; Richardson 1971:261–262; Cross 1973:234n67; Freedman 1976:58, 73; Mettinger 1976–1977:149–151 (treating zimrāt as an “intensive plural”); McCarter 1984:476–480.

[ back ] 157. See p128–129. Cf. Richardson 1971:261; Cross 1998:140, noting that the precise vocalization is uncertain.

[ back ] 158. This new understanding of zmrt has also affected the interpretation of an ancient formula that appears in several Biblical passages. Hence in the ‘Song of Miriam’ (Exodus 15:2) “The Lord is my strength and song” becomes “strength and might,” vel sim.; similarly in Isaiah 12:2, Psalms 118:14. For the evidently deep (Canaanite) antiquity of this “fossilized pair of words … preserved in this set context only,” see Lowenstamm 1969:464, the critique of Parker 1971, and further below, p177n161.

[ back ] 159. See p128–129. The potential of this parallel has been noted by ARTU:4n16; Koitabashi 1996:222; Parker 1997:166n36; RTU:328n19.

[ back ] 160. Levenson 1985:66, in interpreting n‘m as ‘person granted a favorable omen’, rejected ‘singer’ as lacking in Biblical parallels; but he did not note the Ugaritian ones.

[ back ] 161. Stimulating and provocative suggestions to this effect were put forward by Lowenstamm 1969, vis-à-vis the formula in Exodus 15:2; Isaiah 12:2, Psalms 118:14 (see p76n158). Lowenstamm’s argument (465–466) for a single P-S root *ḏmr containing within itself ideas of both ‘song’ and ‘power/glory’ cannot be sustained on linguistic grounds: see p138n160. I also recognize the general validity of the critique by Parker 1971 (cf. Mettinger 1976–1977:150n13). Yet neither study took account of the wordplay on ḏmr in RS 24.252 (see p137–139). Such a conflation of ‘song’ and ‘power’ seems to underlie the Zimri son of Zerah who has four musical brothers in Ethan, Heman, Calcol, Darda (1 Chronicles 2:6), the Canaanite cultural sympathies of whom were explicated by Albright 1956:127 (cf. p152). Pardee 1988a:142 thinks of folk etymology: “It is quite likely that in popular understanding the onomastic element zimrî was ‘mistakenly’ thought to be related to zamar ‘make music’.” Therefore I am still drawn to Lowenstamm’s conclusion that “No translation is likely to render the exact force of the Hebrew words, because their connotations and associations are too deeply rooted in the specific theology of the ancient Canaanite hymnic tradition” (469–470). My analysis of the wordplay in RS 24.252 has led, from an independent angle, to a result very similar to Lowenstamm’s conception of the early Hebrew formula: “The noun … primarily denoting the glory given to God in cultic song, may also be applied to the glory bestowed by the Lord upon those who glorify Him … The notion of praise in cultic music becomes reduced to that of glory pure and simple. It follows that the pair of words denotes the Psalmist’s strength and glory, the source of both he finds in his God” (468).

[ back ] 162. See p137–139.

[ back ] 163. See p140.

[ back ] 164. See sources and discussion in LJ 4:114–116, 6:272–273 n128–129. I thank Miryam Brand for her help with these texts.

[ back ] 165. BM 124947 (see above, n30). For the point, Sellers 1941:38; Rimmer 1969:34; DCPIL:49; Parallels: see p247 and n27.

[ back ] 166. Of the psalms attributed to David (Psalms 3–9, 11–32, 34–41, 51–70, 86, 101, 103, 109–110, 122, 124, 131, 133, 138–145), a clearly Davidic persona may be seen in e.g. 144–145, and especially the supernumerary Psalms 151 in the LXX (relating to the victory over Goliath). For 2 Samuel 22/Psalms 18, see p147n174; for 2 Samuel 23:1–7, p175. This phenomenon provides some justification for those who would translate nĕʿîm zĕmīrôt yiśrā’ēl as “Favorite of Israel’s Songs”: so e.g. Laymon 1971:180.

[ back ] 167. See p80–81.

[ back ] 168. 4Q381 fr. 24.4 (‘Man of God’), 31.4 (‘King of Judah’, name lost), 33.8 (Mannaseh). For Psalmody at Qumran: Schuller 1986 (royal ascriptions, 29 and 101); Schuller’s introduction to Charlesworth 1997:1 with references.

[ back ] 169. Psalms 98:4–6.

[ back ] 170. Psalms 148:7–10; cf. 149.

[ back ] 171. Note Psalm 149:3 and especially the famous instrumentarium of 150, which became a favorite subject of Byzantine musical iconography: see Currie forthcoming and p543–544.

[ back ] 172. See p193–194.

[ back ] 173. See e.g. LJ2 5:451, 459–463.

[ back ] 174. Thus Matthew 1:1–17 carefully establishes the Davidic descent of Jesus. Further sources and discussion in LJ 6:272–273; EJ2 5:451a–454a.

[ back ] 175. See Halton 1983, and further p209–210. For the link back to David, note e.g. the description of Jesus in Paulinus Carmina 20.41–42 as ille Dauid uerus, citharam qui corporis huius / restituit, etc.

[ back ] 176. Numbers 24:17. For the messianic aspect of the Bar Kokhba movement, see with ancient sources Yadin 1971:18–19, 23, 27; AJC:140–142; EJ2 3:157–159.

[ back ] 177. This is accepted by Strack 1983:72, who otherwise rejects much of the biographical tradition about ‘Aqiba; cf. EJ2 1:562a–563b. David’s throne: Sanhedrin 38b (BT 12:245); LJ 6:272n128.

[ back ] 178. Mildenberg 1984:13–14.

[ back ] 179. For the sophistication of Roman imperial propaganda via coins, see Noreña 2011.

[ back ] 180. AJC:141, cf. 137.

[ back ] 181. Yadin 1971:27; AJC:140–142.

[ back ] 182. Lyre-coins: Mildenberg 1984 no. 165, 172–186, 196, 201–220, 232–241, 244, 247–249; AJC no. 223a–h, 236, 238–242a, 272–275, 296–299, with discussion at 147–149. For identification as kinnōr and nēbel, Bayer 1968; RlA 6:580 (Collon, *Leier B); SAM:170–171 (no. 133–134).

[ back ] 183. DCPIL:56 (“Neo-Grecian”), cf. MGG 5:1035–1036; also 1:1510 pl. 2 (Braun) for other seemingly Hellenized lyre forms from Akko, Caesarea, Gaza, Samaria, Gadara, Petra, and elsewhere in Jordan.

[ back ] 184. Recall the musical organization that accompanied the Second Temple’s dedication. Cf. AJC:148, with reference to Nehemiah 12:27.

[ back ] 185. LJ 4:21, 6:411n64.

[ back ] 186. The tale appears in Berakhot 3b (BT 1:9–10), where it is given “in the name of R. Simeon the Pious” (cf. Strack 1983:107, identifying with the High Priest Simeon I, ca. 300 BCE); Sanhedrin 16a (BT 12:79); Midrash Rabbah Numbers 15.16 (Freedman and Simon 1983 6:659): “A harp [i.e. kinnōr] hung over David’s bed. When the hour of midnight arrived, a northerly wind blew upon it and it played of its own accord. Thereupon David would rise up with his disciples. For they used to occupy themselves with the Torah, toiling and driving sleep from their eyes, studying Torah until the dawn. This is why David said, ‘Awake, my glory; psaltery and harp, I will awake the dawn.’” Cf. LJ 4:101.

[ back ] 187. Analecta Hymnica Graeca, Canones Januarii, Day 25, Canon 30 (1), Ode 6.46 (ed. Proiou/Schirò): τὴν θεόηχον κινύραν (referring to the emulation of David by Gregory of Nazianzus); Canones Decembris, Day 26, Canon 51, Ode 5.16–17 (ed. Kominis/Schirò): τοῖς μελῳδήμασι / χρώμενοι Δαβίδ, τῆς ἐνθέου κινύρας σου; Ode 8.56–58: ψαλτήριον ἔμψυχον / καὶ κινύρα ψυχὰς θέλγουσα / πρὸς ἔρωτα τὸν ἔνθεον.

[ back ] 188. Gregory of Nazianzus Orations 43 (PG 36:596B): πρὸ τῆς βασιλείας ἡ τῆς κινύρας δύναμις, καὶ πονηροῦ πνεύματος κατεπᾴδουσα.

[ back ] 189. Nikephoros Basilakes Orations 1.608: τὸν Δαυῒδ μετὰ τοῦ πνεύματος καὶ τῆς τοῦ πνεύματος κινύρας. Cf. Analecta Hymnica Graeca, Canones Novembris, Day 30, Canon 44, Ode 7.8 (ed. Kominis/Schirò): τὴν κινύραν τοῦ πνεύματος, again of David.

[ back ] 190. See p61, 210.

[ back ] 191. SOM 1:75. For the cultural and historical issues which account for Mohammed’s familiarity with and use of these legends, see Adang 1996:1–22. For a good survey of sources for pre-Islamic Arabian legend, including the development of David and Solomon, see Norris 1983.

[ back ] 192. See 17.55, 27.15. For the Quran’s engagement with the Psalter specifically, cf. Masson 1958:429.

[ back ] 193. 21.79 (trans. Dawood); cf. 34.10.

[ back ] 194. 38.18 (trans. Dawood).

[ back ] 195. For the tale of David and the talking frog, see LJ 4:101–102, 6:262–263n84. Quran: see especially 21.81, 27.16–45 (language of birds); 34.12–14; 38.36. The Quranic passages relating to David and Solomon are compared with their Biblical antecedents by Masson 1958:423–436. Much fabulous material is found in the exegetical tradition of the Quran: see Thackston 1978:289–286, 300–308; EQ 1:495a–497b (I. Hass s.v. David), 5:76a–78b (P. Soucek s.v. Solomon); Wheeler 2002:266–279; Brinner 2002:462–468 (David), 491–498 (Solomon).

[ back ] 196. SOM 1:123 (source: the ‘Iqd al-Farīd).

[ back ] 197. Brinner 2002:463 (translation), cf. 464 (the mountains answer David’s songs); Thackston 1978:289 (the earth laughs and beasts bow down to David upon Solomon’s birth).

[ back ] 198. Targum Sheni to Esther 1:3 (translation after Ego 1996). For this work and its dating, see EJ2 19:513b–515a. Naturally individual elements of the targum may represent older traditions.