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concubine

Source:
A Dictionary of the Bible What is This? Contains accessibly written entries for topics covering the religious, historical, and social aspects of the Bible.

    concubine

    A secondary wife on whom Hebrew law conferred certain minimal rights (Deut. 21: 15–17). Sarah and Rachel gave their handmaidens to their husbands to bear children when it seemed they were infertile (Gen. 16: 1–3; 30: 3–6) as also did Leah (Gen. 30: 9), who was by no means infertile. Both Saul (2 Sam. 3: 7) and David (2 Sam. 5: 13) took concubines, and when Absalom lay publicly (2 Sam. 16: 22) with his father's concubines it was making a claim to royal status. Solomon had three hundred concubines (1 Kgs. 11: 3).

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