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Maacah

MAACAH

MAACAH (Heb. מַעֲכָה),

(1) one of David's wives, daughter of Talmai King of Geshur, mother of Absalom (ii Sam. 3:3; i Chron. 3:2);

(2) one of Rehoboam's wives, daughter of *Absalom or Abisalom son of David, mother of Abijam or Abijah (i Kings 15:2; ii Chron. 11:20, 22) and Asa (i Kings 15:11; ii Chron. 15:16).

The references to the second Maacah pose certain problems, as a literal reading of all the passages related to her indicates that she is the daughter of Absalom, who, according to ii Samuel 14:27, had only one daughter, Tamar. The above references also indicate that Maacah is the mother of Abijah. According to ii Chronicles 13:2 (mt), Abijah's mother is Micaiah, daughter of Uriel. Finally the references show Maacah also to be the mother of Asa.

In order to resolve these contradictions, the Masoretic Text of ii Chronicles 13:2 must be corrected in accordance with the Septuagint, which reads "Maacah daughter of Uriel." (Everywhere else in the Masoretic Text as well as in the Septuagint Abijah's mother is called Maacah daughter of Absalom.) With this correction the problems are more easily resolved. Maacah is then the granddaughter of Absalom, the daughter of Uriel and Tamar, the mother of Abijah, and the grandmother of Asa. Some of the original confusion results from the fact that the Bible often used the term "children" for "grandchildren" and even descendants who are generations removed (cf. Gen. 31:28; i Kings 15:11, et al.).

W. Rudolph (see bibl.) adopts the view of M. Noth (see bibl.) that ii Chronicles 13:2 represents the original text of i Kings 15:2 which is now influenced by i Kings 15:10. Then Abijah would be the son of Rehoboam's wife Micaiah daughter of Uriel, and Asa the son of Abijah's wife Maacah, who would have been the literal daughter of an unknown Absalom, not the granddaughter of David's son Absalom. King Asa deposed Maacah from being queen mother because of an abominable image she had made for Asherah (i Kings 15:13). S. Yeivin maintains that Maacah is Abijah's mother, while Micaiah daughter of Uriel is Asa's mother, and that Asa is Rehoboam's son, and Abijah's half brother.

bibliography:

S. Yeivin, in: bjpes, 10 (1943), 116–9; M. Noth, Überlieferungsgeschichtliche Studien (1943), 143; W. Rudolph, Chronikbücher (1955), 231–3; em, 5 (1968), 193–4 (incl. bibl.). Add. Bibliography: S. Japhet, i … ii Chronicles (1993), 670–72; M. Cogan, iKings (ab; 2000), 392–93.

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