Ishbosheth = "man of shame"
1) surviving son of Saul, king of Israel for 7 years while David
was king over Judah; succeeded by David who united the kingdom
378 'Iysh-Bosheth eesh-bo'-sheth
from 376 and 1322; man of shame; Ish- Bosheth, a son of King
see HEBREW for 0376
see HEBREW for 01322
man of shame or humiliation, the youngest of Saul's four sons, and the only one who survived him (2 Sam. 2-4). His name was originally Eshbaal (1 Chr. 8:33; 9:39). He was about forty years of age when his father and three brothers fell at the battle of Gilboa. Through the influence of Abner, Saul's cousin, he was acknowledged as successor to the throne of Saul, and ruled over all Israel, except the tribe of Judah (over whom David was king), for two years, having Mahanaim, on the east of Jordan, as his capital (2 Sam. 2:9). After a troubled and uncertain reign he was murdered by his guard, who stabbed him while he was asleep on his couch at mid-day (2 Sam. 4:5-7); and having cut off his head, presented it to David, who sternly rebuked them for this cold-blooded murder, and ordered them to be immediately executed (9-12).
- ish-bo'-sheth (ish-bosheth, "man of shame"' Iesbosthe): Called 'eshba`al, "man of Baal" (1 Ch 8:33
), and yishwi, "man of Yahweh" (?), perhaps for 'isheyo (1 Sam 14:49
). Compare ESHBAAL and ISHVI (the King James Version "Ishui"). We probably have the right meaning of the name in Eshbaal and Ishvi, the words Baal and Yahweh being frequently interchanged. The change to Ish-bosheth, "man of shame," in 2 Samuel, where the story of his shameful murder is related, may be better explained as reference to this (see MEPHIBOSHETH, whose name was also changed from Merib-baal for similar reasons), than to find here a suggestion of Baal-worship, but see HPN, 121, where the change is explained as a correction of the scribes, in consequence of prophetic protests.
One of the sons of Saul (1 Ch 8:33; 9:39; 1 Sam 14:49) who, when his father and brothers were slain in the battle of Gilboa (1 Sam 31:1 ff), was proclaimed king over Israel by Abner, the captain of Saul's host, at Mahanaim (2 Sam 2:8 ff). Ishbosheth was 40 years old at this time and reigned over Israel 2 years (2 Sam 2:10). Judah, however, proclaimed David its king. The consequence was war (2 Sam 2:12 ff). The house of David prevailed against the house of Saul (2 Sam 3:1), but the war did not come to a close until Abner, angry on account of the rebuke he suffered from Ish-Bosheth for his unlawful intimacy with Rizpah, Saul's concubine, joined David (2 Sam 3:6 ff). David's condition to return to him Michal, his wife before peace could be made, was fulfilled by Ish-Bosheth (2 Sam 3:14 f), but it was not until after Abner's death that Ish-Bosheth seems to have given up hopes of retaining his power (2 Sam 4:1 ff). The shameful murder of Ish-Bosheth by his own captains is recorded in 2 Sam 4:5 ff. David punished the murderers who had expected reward and buried Ish-Bosheth in the grave of Abner at Hebron (2 Sam 4:12 f).
Arthur L. Breslich