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MERAB (Heb. מֵרַב; probably from the root rbb), the eldest daughter of King *Saul (i Sam. 14:49). Saul promised Merab as a wife for *David, upon the condition that David fight Saul's wars against the Philistines (18:17–18). Saul did not fulfill his part of the bargain (18:19). Instead he gave Merab to *Adriel the Meholathite, and *Michal, her younger sister, became the wife of David. The conditional promise of marriage is similar to i Samuel 17:25, where Saul promises his daughter to the person who defeats Goliath. ii Samuel 21:8 mentions the five sons of Michal and Adriel. The text should, however, read Merab instead of Michal on the basis of the Lucianic version of the Septuagint, the Peshita, and two masoretic texts.


de Vaux, Anc Isr, 32.

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