The formation of judges and samuel and the deuteronomistic composition

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The formation of the books Judges and Samuel is re-examined in this article. The author maintains that two main editions of the book of Samuel were created. The first was composed in Jerusalem during the reign of Solomon. The author of this edition was also the author of the second edition of the Book of Judges ("B"). The first edition of Judges, the "book of saviors,"which was composed in the north at the beginning of the age of monarchy ("A"), was also one of the four main sources which were incorporated into the first edition of Samuel. The other sources were: the "acts of Saul"; the "acts of David,"and the "book of Jashar."The second edition of Samuel and the third of Judges were edited by a single person, the Deuteronomist, in Babylonia, ca. 560 BCE. He prepared an extensive composition describing the history of Israel from Moses to Jeremiah. In Deuteronomy the path was delineated and norms were determined. The main body (Joshua-Kings) records the ups and downs in Israel's relationship with God; and the epilogue (the book of Jeremiah) focuses on the destruction and Exile, explaining the events and informing the exiles of the message of redemption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalVetus Testamentum
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2021.


  • David
  • Kingship
  • Major and minor judges
  • Saviors
  • Theocracy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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