Bible: 1 Samuel

(after 960 BCE)

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The biblical book 1 Samuel (8–12) contains the memories of how kingship emerged in ancient Israel with Saul. These chapters also contain some of the most abrasive criticism of kingship to be found in the Bible. As early as the 1840s biblical scholars discerned two narrative traditions woven together in these chapters: an old pro-monarchical source in 1 Samuel 9:1–10:16, 11:1–15, 13:1–23, and 14:1–52, which arose between the tenth and the seventh centuries BCE, and a later...