[b-hebrew] Shield-bearer 1 Samuel 17:41

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Fri Jul 2 15:22:47 EDT 2004

----- Original Message -----
From: RGmyrken at aol.com


This is interesting. We know that later after David became king, his troops were called “hoplites” הפלתי which I opined is a Philistine loan word into Hebrew. Apparently the Philistines were not only armed with steel while most of their foes still had bronze, if anything, but that they also developed battle tactics that were so good that the Greeks were still using them centuries later. A downside is that those tactics required an almost full-time army, hence a Philistine need for vassel nations giving tribute to maintain their armies.

It is known that much of Greek civilization was copied from other sources in the Levant, it would not surprise me that this is one more copy into Greek society.

Karl W. Randolph.

> Dear Brian,
>    I Sam. 17:41 clearly reflects Hellenistic hoplight military tactics, in 
> which a shield-bearer was standard.  The description of Goliath's weaponry is 
> also consistent with such an interpretation.  Please see any standard work on 
> the Hellenistic armies.
> Best regards,
> Russell Gmirkin
> > My confusion is based on how it could have worked that two of them would 
> > be approaching David. I understand the idea of an armour-bearer to carry 
> > weapons etc. for a warrior, but surely when he is actually going to 
> > battle the armour-bearer then gives the armour to the warrior.
> > 
> >
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