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King David
1Samuel 20:16 Jonathan made a covenant with the House of David
 
Tel Dan Stele - House of David Inscription
The Tel Dan Stele. House of David inscription.
 
Philistines Gath and Goliath
Philistine inscription from Gath.The two names that appear in the inscription from Tell es-Safi/Gath are remarkably similar to the etymological parallels of Goliath.
 
 
 
 
History
King David was the second king of the united kingdom of Israel (c. 1005 BC – 965 BC) and successor to King Saul. He is depicted as the most righteous of all the ancient kings of Israel - although not without fault - as well as an acclaimed warrior, musician and poet (he is traditionally credited with the authorship of many of the Psalms).
 
 

Tel Dan Stele. House of David Inscription
The Tel Dan Stele is a black basalt stele erected by an Aramaean king in northernmost Israel containing an Aramaic inscription to commemorate his victory over the ancient Hebrews. The inscription has been dated to the 9th or 8th centuries BCE.

Only portions of the inscription remain, but it has generated much excitement among those interested in Biblical archaeology. Attention is concentrated on the phrase which is identical to the Hebrew for "house of David."

A line by line translation by André Lemaire is as follows (with text that cannot be read due to being missing from the stele, or too damaged by erosion, represented by "[.....]"):

1'. [.....................].......[...................................] and cut [.........................]
2'. [.........] my father went up [....................f]ighting at/against Ab[....]
3'. And my father lay down; he went to his [fathers]. And the king of I[s-]
4'. rael penetrated into my father's land[. And] Hadad made me—myself—king.
5'. And Hadad went in front of me[, and] I departed from ...........[.................]
6'. of my kings. And I killed two [power]ful kin[gs], who harnessed two thou[sand cha-]
7'. riots and two thousand horsemen. I killed Joram son of Ahab
8'. king of Israel, and I killed [Achaz]yahu son of [Joram kin]g
9'. of the House of David. And I set [.......................................................]
10'. their land ...[.......................................................................................]
11'. other ...[......................................................................... and Jehu ru-]
12'. led over Is[rael...................................................................................]
13'. siege upon [............................................................]

Joram Son of Ahab also appears in the inscription
2 Kings 8:16 - "And in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab King of Israel"

This is the first time that the name "David" has been recognized at any archaeological site. Like the Mesha stele, the Tel Dan Stele seems typical of a memorial intended as a sort of military propaganda, which boasts of Hazael's or his son's victories. (Some epigraphers think that the phrase "house of David" also appears in a partly broken line in the Mesha stele.)

 
 

The City of Gath and Goliath
Tell es-Safi/Gath is a large site in Central Israel situated about half way between Jerusalem and Ashkelon. It is identified as biblical “Gath of the Philistines,” one of the major cities of the Philistines, the well-known arch-enemies of the Israelites in the biblical text.

The site, which has rich finds from many periods, has revealed impressive evidence of the various stages of the Philistine culture during the Iron Age (c. 1200 – 586 BCE), parallel, more or less, to the time of the Israelite kingdoms. Among other finds, impressive evidence of the siege and subsequent destruction of the site by Hazael, King of Aram Damascus c. 800 BCE (as mentioned in 2 Kings 12:18)

During the excavation season of 2005, in a well-defined context dating to the 10th or early 9th century BCE, a sherd with a short inscription was found. The inscription is written in archaic “Proto-Canaanite” letters, but has in it two non-Semitic names: Alwt and Wlt.

This inscription is of extreme importance for several reasons:

1) It is the earliest Philistine inscription known to date. In fact, it is one of the few Proto-Canaanite inscriptions that have been found in a well-dated and secure archaeological context.

2) While the letters are Semitic, the names appearing are Indo-European (the linguistic family of ancient Greek and related languages). It is assumed by most scholars that the Philistines migrated to the Levant from somewhere in the Aegean region. On their arrival, they brought with them assorted Aegean cultural facets. With time, their culture became more and more effected by the local cultures, slowly incorporating local elements. This inscription, with Semitic script and Indo-European names is among the earliest hard evidence showing this process.

3) Most significantly, the names that appear in this inscription are strikingly similar to a well known Philistine name – Goliath. The name Goliath is clearly of non-Semitic origin, and most scholars believe that it is etymologically related to various Indo-European names, such as the Lydian name Alyattes. The two names that appear in the new inscription from Tell es-Safi/Gath are remarkably similar to the etymological parallels of Goliath, so much so that it appears to be more than just coincidence. It can be suggested that this indicates that in 10th-9th century Philistine Gath, names quite similar, and possibly identical, to Goliath were in use. This chronological context from which the inscription was found is only about 100 years after the time of David according to the standard biblical chronology. Thus, this appears to provide evidence that the biblical story of Goliath is in fact based on a clear cultural realia from, more or less, the time which is depicted in the biblical text. Thus, recent attempts to claim that Goliath can only be understood in the context of later phases of the Iron Age are unwarranted.

4) Finally, in the Egyptian story of Wenamun (dating to the 11th or 10th centuries BCE), there is a description of the Egyptian priest Wenamun’s travels from Egypt to Lebanon to purchase cedar for his temple in Egypt. During his travels he reached Dor, on the northern coast of present day Israel. At the site he mentions various figures, including a person with an apparent Philistine/Sea Peoples name: Weret or Welet. Once again, this name is very similar to the names appearing in the new inscription from Tell es-Safi/Gath.

In summary, the new inscription from Tell es-Safi/Gath is of quite astounding importance. Not only is it the earliest Philistine inscription known to date, and one of the few well-dated Proto-Canaanite inscriptions, it provides unequivocal evidence of the transformation of the Philistines from an Aegean to a Semitic culture. Most importantly, it provides the first evidence from Philistia (the land of the biblical Philistines, the southern coastal plain of Modern Israel) of names similar to Goliath, paralleling the mention of this name in the biblical text (and a similar name in a more or less contemporary Egyptian text).

 
 

Scriptures
1Samuel 20:16 So Jonathan made a covenant with the House of David

1Samuel 17:4 And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath

Jeremiah 21:12 O House of David, thus saith the LORD; Execute judgment in the morning, and deliver him that is spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor