On hearing the news of the death of Jonathan (Mephibosheth's father) and Saul (his grandfather), his nurse dropped the infant Mephibosheth in her haste (2 Sam. 4: 4), after which he was permanently lame. David treated him generously, even when he was implicated in the plot of Absalom to seize the throne (2 Sam. 16: 1–4). It is likely that Meribbaal (1 Chron, 8: 34) is another name for the same person; ‘bosheth’, meaning ‘shame’, was substituted for the objectionable word ‘baal’.