GIRZITES (gûr'zīts). Variously called Gerzites, Gizrites, or Gerizzites, this was a tribe named between the Geshurites and the Amalekites (1Sam.27.8). They are called the ancient inhabitants of the land, on the way to Shur, toward Egypt; that is, in the south or Negev of Judah; not certainly connected with Gezer. If originally of Gezer, they may have been driven south by invading Israelites or Philistines.
GIRZITES gûr zîts,
a Canaanite tribe of the period of the conquest under Joshua, mentioned only in 1 Samuel 27:8
. The text has as Kethibh
; Heb. גִּרְזִי
, “Ge/irzites” while the Qere yields: Heb. גִּזְרִ֖י
, “Gezrites,” “inhabitants of Gezer.” The LXX reads, Γεζραίος
which supports the Qere reading and which, in turn, would be the natural gentilic formed from the common Sem. root, Gezer, as in the Amarna Letters, Gazri.
There is little doubt this name refers to ancient Gezer, although the common critical objection that Gezer was too far N for it to be involved in this account is not without some merit. The additional critical proposal that the term Girzite is a mere scribal dittograph from Geshurite (q.v.) is untenable since the corrected form Gezrite or Gezerite is quite proper. There is also the possibility that the Kethibh reading of “Ge/irzites may refer not to Biblical Gezer but to Mt. Gerizim, which would fit better the historical and geographical situation in 1 Samuel 27:8