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David and Solomon : in search of the Bible's…

David and Solomon : in search of the Bible's sacred kings and the roots of… (2006)

by Israel Finkelstein, Neil Asher Silberman (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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These two have gone looking in Israel's Archaeology for evidence that would support the idea that the kingdom of David and Solomon was large, and a serious player in the Ancient Near East. They don't seem to have found much evidence that many ambitious structures were built in the area at the projected time, and coupling that with the lack of diplomatic correspondence that existed with and between other states at the time, the evidence overall is scanty . Not a popular book with the believers in the historical truth of the Bible, I understand. It certainly raises the question of the claims to authenticity of the Books of Samuel and the corresponding parts of Kings and Chronicles. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Aug 8, 2014 |
A Finkelstein book will be controversial; let’s establish that up front. And because there exists very little archaeological evidence outside the Bible story of Judah’s first kings, speculation will be a natural result of any such study. We know absolutely nothing from history about Saul and precious little about David and Solomon; in fact, the evidence is so sparse that a few scholars still doubt the existence of all three.

Finkelstein and Silberman don’t doubt, but neither are they able to provide 342 pages of historical analysis. Instead, they trace the legends of these early kings through a thousand years of Hebrew writings, both in and out of the Bible. The earliest folklore and Bible verses about David show him as a bandit leader of a small gang of traveling raiders. Later authors portrayed David as a poet and a founder of a great dynasty, as well as a sinner. Solomon’s reputation, as well, grew over time into a shrewd trader and wise sage.

How many of these writings are based on fact, and how many on legend? The authors’ scholarly research and field experience will make you reconsider. ( )
2 vote DubiousDisciple | May 1, 2011 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Israel Finkelsteinprimary authorall editionscalculated
Silberman, Neil AsherAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Seuß, RitaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The Shepherd and the Slingstone
The small, remote Elah valley in southern Israel is a place of unique biblical inspiration.
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David und Salomo gehören zur Grundlage unserer Zivilisation und unserer Bemühungen, den Traum von einem Goldenen Zeitalter und einer idealen Herrschaft mit einer sich ständig verändernden politischen, sozialen und religiösen Wirklichkeit in einklang zu bringen. ( Seite 226).
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0743243625, Hardcover)

The exciting field of biblical archaeology has revolutionized our understanding of the Bible - and no one has done more to popularise this vast store of knowledge than Israel Finkelstein and Neil Silberman, who revealed what we now know about when and why the Bible was first written in "The Bible Unearthed". Now, with "David and Solomon", they do nothing less than help us to understand the sacred kings and founding fathers of western civilization. David and his son Solomon are famous in the Bible for their warrior prowess, legendary loves, wisdom, poetry, conquests, and ambitious building programmes. Yet thanks to archaeology's astonishing finds, we now know that most of these stories are myths. Finkelstein and Silberman show us that the historical David was a bandit leader in a tiny back-water called Jerusalem, and how - through wars, conquests and epic tragedies like the exile of the Jews in the centuries before Christ and the later Roman conquest - David and his successor were reshaped into mighty kings and even messiahs, symbols of hope to Jews and Christians alike in times of strife and despair and models for the great kings of Europe. A landmark work of research and lucid scholarship by two brilliant luminaries, "David and Solomon" recasts the very genesis of western history in a whole new light.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:44 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Discoveries of biblical archaeology have shed powerful light on the characters in the Bible. Here, archaeologists Finkelstein and Silberman focus on the first two great kings of the Bible as a lens through which we can see the evolution of the entire era. The Bible's verses on David and his son were written in stages, over many hundreds of years, by authors living in very different circumstances. The earliest folklore about David depicts a bandit leader, leading a small gang of traveling raiders. In later periods, authors added images of a poet, the founder of a great dynasty, a political in-fighter, and a sinner. A similar evolution of Solomon from the builder of the Temple, to expander of his empire, to wise sage, to rich trader similarly reflects successive stages of history. Ultimately, David and Solomon came to embody a tradition of divinely inspired kings.--From publisher description.… (more)

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