ETHBAAL (Heb. אֶתְבַּעַל; "Baal is with him" – pronounced Ittoba'al?), a name borne by several kings of city-states in the area that classical sources call *Phoenicia, corresponding in the main to present-day Lebanon and Northwest Israel. Akkadian transcriptions indicate that the initial alef of Itobaal might be elided in pronunciation. (1) King of Tyre and Sidon, ca. 887–856 b.c.e., father of Jezebel (i Kings 16:31; Jos., Ant., 8:317). According to Menander of Ephesus, the historian of Phoenicia quoted by Josephus, Ethbaal (Ithobalos) was a priest of Astarte (as is attested of later kings of Sidon), who became king by murdering his predecessor, and ruled for 32 years (Jos., Apion, 1:123). A year-long drought in his reign (identified by Josephus as that in Ahab's reign, cf. i Kings 17) ended, according to Menander, when Ethbaal "made supplications to the gods, whereupon a heavy thunderstorm broke out" (Jos., Ant., 8:324). He founded the Phoenician city Botrys and the Libyan city Auza (ibid.). (2) Son of *Hiram (Ahiram), a tenth-century b.c.e. king of Byblos (Pritchard, Texts, 2, 504; ibid., 3, 661). (3) An eighth-century king of Tyre who paid tribute to Tiglath-Pileser iii ca. 740 b.c.e., whose existence was unknown before 1972. (4) A king of Sidon installed by Sennacherib in 701 as a replacement for the rebellious Lulli. (5) A sixth-century b.c.e. king of Tyre (Jos., Apion, 1:156).
Z.S. Harris, A Grammar of the Phoenician Language (1936), 85; J.A. Montgomery, The Book of Kings (icc, 1951), 286; J.M. Grintz, in: em, 1 (1965), 790–1 (includes bibl.). add. bibliography: B. Peckham, in: abd v, 349–57; H. Katzenstein, in: abd vi, 686–90; J. Friedrich, W. Röllig, and M. Guzzo, Phönizisch-Punische Grammatik (1999), 13; H. Tadmor, The Inscriptions of Tiglath-Pileser iii King of Assyria (1994), 266–67; M. Cogan, i Kings (2000), 421; cos ii, 181–83, 287, 302–3.
[Jeffrey Howard Tigay /
S. David Sperling (2nd ed.)]