→ Arabic language: أبيمالك.
(father of the king), the name of several Philistine kings, was probably a common title of these kings, like that of Pharaoh among the Egyptians and that of Caesar and Augustus among the Romans. Hence in the title of (Psalms 34:1)...
Son of the judge Gideon by his Shechemite concubine. (Judges 8:31) (B.C. 1322-1319.) After his father's death he murdered all his brethren, 70 in number, with the exception of Jotham, the youngest, who concealed himself; and he then persuaded the Shechemites to elect him king. Shechem now became an independent state. After Abimelech had reigned three years, the citizens of Shechem rebelled, and you can find more about that here on st-takla.org on other commentaries and dictionary entries.He was absent at the time, but he returned and quelled the insurrection. Shortly after he stormed and took Thebez, but was struck on the head by a woman with the fragment of a millstone, comp. (2 Samuel 11:21) and lest he should be said to have died by a woman, he bade his armor-bearer slay him.
* See other occurrences of the same term: Abimelech.
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