Samson

SAMSON (săm’sŭn, Heb. shimshôn, probably little sun, Gr. Sampsōn, Lat. and Eng. Samson). One of the judges of Israel, perhaps the last before Samuel. The record of his life is found in Judg.13.1-Judg.13.25-Judg.16.1-Judg.16.31. He was an Israelite of the tribe of Dan, the son of Manoah.

Zorah, where he was born, was about halfway between Jerusalem and the Mediterranean, along the coast of which the Philistines lived. His birth was announced by the angel of the Lord beforehand to his mother, who was barren. The angel told her that she would have a son, that this son should be a Nazirite from his birth, and that the Lord would begin to use him to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. Nazirites were under a special vow to God to restrain their carnal nature, thus showing the people generally that if they would receive God’s blessing, they must deny and govern themselves and be faithful to their vows of consecration as God’s covenant people. The preternatural strength that Samson exhibited at various times in his career was not his because he was a natural giant, but because the Spirit of the Lord came on him to accomplish great deeds.

At the time of his birth the Israelites had been in bondage to the Philistines for forty years because they had done evil in the sight of the Lord. After his birth “he grew and the Lord blessed him, and the Spirit of the Lord began to stir him while he was in Mahaneh Dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol” (Judg.13.24-Judg.13.25). But almost from the beginning of his career he showed one conspicuous weakness, which was ultimately to wreck him: he was a slave to passion. He insisted, against the objections of his parents, on marrying a Philistine woman of Timnath, which was not far from Zorah. At the wedding feast he challenged the guests with a riddle, making a wager with them for thirty changes of clothing. By threatening the life of his bride, the Philistines compelled her to obtain the answer from him. When he found he had been tricked, he killed thirty Philistines of Ashkelon in revenge and gave his guests their garments, thus fulfilling his wager. He went home without his wife, giving the impression that he had forsaken her. When he returned later, he found that her father had given her in marriage to someone else, and he was offered her sister in her stead. In revenge Samson caught three hundred foxes and sent them into the Philistine grain fields in pairs, with burning torches tied between their tails. The Philistines retaliated by burning his wife and her father to death.

This act of vengeance only provoked another and a greater vengeance from Samson. He “attacked them viciously and slaughtered many of them” and went to a cave in a rock called Etam. The Philistines invaded Judah and demanded the surrender of their archenemy. Samson agreed to allow the Israelites to deliver him into the hands of the Philistines; but on the way he broke the cords that bound him and, seizing the jawbone of a donkey, killed one thousand men with it. With this great feat Samson clearly established his title to the position of a judge in Israel. The historian says in this connection, “Samson led Israel for twenty years in the days of the Philistines” (Judg.15.20). The expression “in the days of the Philistines” implies that the ascendancy of the Philistines was not destroyed but only kept in check by the prowess of Samson.

Samson next went down to Gaza, a Philistine stronghold, and yielded to the solicitations of a harlot. When it became known that he was in the city, the Philistines laid a trap for him; but at midnight Samson got up, took the doors of the gate of the city and the two posts, and carried them a quarter of a mile to the top of the hill before Hebron. God in his mercy continued to give him supernatural strength in spite of his evil actions.

Continuing his life of self-indulgence, Samson before long became enamored of a Philistine woman named Delilah, through whom he lost his physical power. The Philistine leaders bribed her with a large sum of money to betray him into their hands. By their direction she begged him to tell her in what his great strength lay. Three times he gave her deceitful answers, but at last he gave in to her importunities and revealed that if only his hair were cut he would be like other men. She lulled him into a profound sleep, his hair was cut, and when he awoke and heard her derisive cry, “Samson, the Philistines are upon you!” he found that not merely his strength but also God had departed from him. Now at the mercy of his enemies, he was bound with chains, his eyes were put out, and he was sent to grind in the prison of Gaza.

How long Samson continued in this state of shameful bondage is unknown—perhaps some weeks or even months. On the occasion of a great feast to the god Dagon, his captors resolved to make sport of him before the assembled multitude. The temple of Dagon was filled with people—with three thousand on the roof to watch the sport. Meanwhile, his hair had grown again, and with his returning strength he longed for revenge on his enemies for his two blinded eyes (Judg.16.28). He asked the servant who attended him to allow him to rest between the two pillars on which the building was supported. Taking hold of them, he prayed that God would help him once more; and with a mighty effort he moved the pillars from their position and brought down the roof, burying with himself a large number of Philistines in its ruins. In dying he killed more than he had killed in his life.

With all of his failings he is listed with the heroes of faith in Heb.11.32. By faith in God’s gift and calling, he received strength to do the wonders he performed. Too often animal passion ruled him. He was without real self-control, and accordingly he wrought no permanent deliverance for Israel.——SB


b

SAMSON săm’ sən (שִׁמְשֹׁ֑ון; LXX Σαμψών, G4907, meaning debated; sunny, sun’s man or sun’s child have been proposed). Judge and hero of Israel famous for his prodigious strength displayed against the Philistines (Judg 13-16).

Name.

The Biblical account gives no explanation, etymology, or significance to the name Samson. Nevertheless, it derives from shemesh, meaning “sun.” This is not unexpected, since Samson was born only a few m. from Beth-Shemesh, the city whose name means “house of the sun.” The city was presumably once the site of a shrine of the sungod. Probably both names are survivals from earlier Canaanite, which reflect Canaanite sun worship before Israel settled the land. This has led some to interpret the Samson story as a solar myth. However, this interpretation cannot be sustained (see Gaster, Myth, Legend and Custom in the Old Testament, 434ff. for refutation).

While the derivation of Samson from shemesh is clear, the function of the -ōn ending of the name is not so clear. It prob. indicates a meaning like “sunny, solar,” or “sun’s man,” though it could be a diminutive ending meaning “sun’s child.” In any event, Ugaritic names with a similar ending are common. This would also support the suggestion above that Samson was originally a Canaanite name.

Historical background.

Samson was born during the period of the judges, prob. around the beginning of the 11th cent. b.c. During this period God raised up national heroes to deliver His people from their enemies. These deliverers were termed judges (שֹֽׁפְטִ֑ים); Samson is the last one mentioned before the transition of Eli and Samuel to the monarchy. Israel’s most formidable enemy at this time was the Philistines, whom God had used to oppress Israel because of their evil deeds (Judg 13:1). Into this situation Samson was born in order to begin to deliver Israel from the hand of the Philistines (13:5).

Birth.

The four chs. of Judges (chs. 13-16) devoted to Samson were built on the theme of a broken vow—a time-honored motif in the history of lit. Even before he was born, Samson was designated as a Nazirite, and the writer took a full chapter to emphasize that (Judg 13).


Central to the promise of a son were the instructions which the angel gave. The boy to be born was to be consecrated to God as a Nazirite from birth. The Nazirite vow involved three prohibitions: (1) against eating or drinking the fruit of the vine; (2) against contamination by any unclean thing; (3) against cutting the hair. Three times the injunction was repeated, each time addressed to his mother (13:4, 5, 7, 14). The implication is that the boy was to be so completely consecrated to God that his mother had to refrain from these things while he was still in the womb. The repetitions were clearly purposeful, and leave the reader with no uncertainty regarding the theme of the story.

The regulations for a Nazirite are given in Numbers 6:2-21, but in Judges the order was changed so that the prohibition against the cutting of the hair came last. This again was purposeful, since the climax of the story came when Samson broke his vow and allowed his hair to be cut.

Life.

Samson’s life was the story of his breaking of the three prohibitions of the Nazirite vow. Hebrew storytelling is at its best in describing how Samson violated these prohibitions, climaxing with Delilah cutting his hair.

Samson’s first adventure, or misadventure, involved a trip down to Timnah (14:1-4). Timnah was in Philistine territory but not more than a few m. from Samson’s house in Zorah. Passage between Israel and Philistia was easy because the Philistines controlled SW Israel (Judg 15:11). In Timnah Samson fell in love with a Philistine woman. This was to be the first of three women who were to prove his undoing. Samson came home to his parents with the request that they acquire her as his wife. Although his parents objected, preferring instead an Israelite for a daughter-in-law, it was all in God’s purpose (14:4).

Two additional trips to Timnah to see his girl friend brought the first violation of his Nazirite vow (14:5-9). On one occasion he met a lion on his way and killed it with his bare hands (14:6). He stopped to see the carcass of the lion on his next trip, and found it full of honey. So he took some, ate it, and brought some home to his parents. Numbers 6:6 specifically indicates that a Nazirite was not to go near a dead body. Since the text says that Samson did not tell his parents what he had done (Judg 14:6, 9), the implication is that he knew he was breaking his vow.

Samson’s fourth trip to Timnah was to marry the Philistine woman (14:10-20). He gave a feast to celebrate the occasion. The Heb. word for feast (misteh) implies a drinking bout which the Philistines would have enjoyed. Though the text does not specifically say that Samson drank, the clear implication is that he did, and thereby broke the second regulation of his Nazirite vow.

Also at the wedding festivities Samson proposed a riddle which turned on a play of words (14:14, 18). Both “honey” and “lion” are outwardly identical in Heb. (see J. R. Porter, JTS 13 [1962], 106-109). His friends answered the riddle, apparently waiting until the last moment before the marriage was to be consummated (14:18). Enraged, Samson went to Ashkelon, killed thirty men and used their garments to pay off the wager he had made with his friends. He then returned home without consummating his marriage. Some have argued that the intended marriage was a type of matriarchal marriage known as sadiqâ, where the husband either lives with his wife’s family or makes periodic visits to her. However, since Samson left in a rage (14:19) we do not know whether he intended to bring his bride home after the ceremonies were over or live at her house.

When he returned to Timnah to visit his wife, he was prevented by her father; she had been married to Samson’s best man (15:1, 2). According to Canaanite law, influenced by Sumerian and Babylonian law, the father could give his daughter away to someone else when the first bridegroom left before the consummation of the marriage. But it was expressly forbidden to give her to the best man who was to protect the groom’s interests. Samson’s revenge was to burn the corn fields of the Philistines in heroic fashion by attaching torches to the tails of 150 pairs of foxes (15:3-5). Ovid tells that it was customary to send foxes into the fields with firebrands tied to their tails at the annual festival of Ceres (Fasti iv. 680ff.). A similar tactic was employed by Hannibal when he scared the Rom. troops by sending oxen into their fields with firebrands tied to their horns (Livy xxii. 16ff.). The Philistines, knowing that the law was on Samson’s side, took revenge on the bride and her father by burning them—the common treatment of an adulterer (15:6). So Samson responded by killing many Philistines (15:8). Later, on another occasion, he killed a thousand Philistines with only the jawbone of an ass (15:15, 16).

Samson’s second woman was a harlot he found in Gaza (16:1-3). While Samson was having sexual relations with her, the Philistines plotted his death. But despite their welllaid plans, he escaped by carrying the city gates to a hill near Hebron, some forty miles away. This was the worst humiliation, because city gates symbolized national strength.


Samson was not the only one whose long hair was associated with heroic strength. Achaean warriors often were called the “long haired” (lliad 2:323, 443, etc.). The fighting strength of the god Phoebus was associated with his unshorn hair (Iliad 20:39). Finally, the Gilgamesh Epic states that the mighty Enkidu had long hair like a woman; and the glyptic art bears this out.

Death.

Samson’s death came with his final heroic deed. To celebrate Samson’s capture and give glory to Dagon, their god, the Philistines assembled at a temple in Gaza. Samson was called out of prison to make sport before the assembled body. Led by a little lad to a position between two pillars, Samson asked to feel the pillars. He then prayed to God for strength to avenge himself. God answered, and Samson pulled down the supporting pillars of the temple. Though it resulted in his own death, he killed more Philistines with this act than during all of his life. He had judged Israel for twenty years (16:28-31).

Character.

Samson was a somewhat enigmatic figure, with very little similarity to other judges. He resembled them only by being possessed of the Spirit, which seized him suddenly and drove him to violent action, exhibiting itself in extraordinary strength. But his exploits were always individual. He called no one else to his aid, led no troops to battle, and was in no sense a national leader. In fact, all he did was to avenge his own personal wrongs on the Philistines. Yet the key to the understanding of Samson is to be found in these individual exploits. They are of such extraordinary proportions that Samson must be understood as a heroic figure, living in a heroic age, and recorded in heroic lit. (For evidence, see the writing of C. H. Gordon, esp. The Common Background of Greek and Hebrew Civilizations and the dissertation of C. E. Armerding, The Heroic Ages of Greece and Israel: A Literary-Historical Comparison.) Comparisons with other heroic figures, such as Hercules and Gilgamesh, are very illuminating. But comparisons do not mean point for point parallels. It is stretching the evidence to find twelve labors of Samson to parallel the twelve labors of Hercules, as some have done.

Historical significance.

The setting of Samson’s exploits was along the border between the Philistines and the tribe of Dan. Thus the primary historical significance of the story is the insight it gives us into life along the border. This information is largely sociological—marriage customs and wedding festivities, relationships with women, riddles, bribes, etc. There is also information about the Philistine domination of Israel. The tribe of Dan at one time had expanded out to the Mediterranean coast (Judg 5:17), but in Samson’s day both Dan and Judah were controlled by the Philistines (Judg 15:11). The pressure was so great that at least part of the tribe of Dan migrated N (chs. 17; 18). The weapons of Samson—a jawbone, his bare hands, and physical strength—clearly indicate that Israel was without the weapons of war and explain the Philistine success. The Philistines had a superior material culture which included the smelting of iron. They specifically guarded this knowledge and prevented the Israelites from learning it and using it to make iron weapons (1 Sam 13:19-23). Thus Israel was no match for the Philistines, unless they had a man of extraordinary strength like Samson fighting for them.

Religious significance.

Since Samson is a heroic figure living in a heroic age, one must be careful in drawing religious significance from his life. His exploits resulted from the circumstances of a rough and ready life. Thus his virtues and vices were those of the heroic age in which he lived, and should not be imitated or avoided, as the case may be. Samson broke his Nazirite vow and disobeyed God, and therein is his religious significance. His life is a negative example of a charismatic leader who came to a tragic, yet heroic, end. Nevertheless, his partial victory over the enemy was reason to be named with the heroes of the faith (Heb 11:32).

Bibliography

G. F. Moore, Judges, ICC (1895), 312-365; P. Carus, The Story of Samson and Its Place in the Religious Development of Mankind (1907); A. S. Palmer, The Samson-Saga and Its Place in Comparative Religion (1913); P. Haupt, “Samson and the Ass’s Jaw,” JBL 33 (1914), 296-298; J. Pedersen, Israel: Its Life and Culture, I and II (1926), III and IV (1940); C. F. Burney, Judges (1930), 335-408; A. Van Selms, “The Best Man and Bride—From Sumer to St. John,” JNES 9 (1950), 65-75; J. R. Porter, “Samson’s Riddle,” JTS 13 (1962), 106-109; J. Blenkinsopp, “Structure and Style in Judges 13-16,” JBL 82 (1963), 65-76; C. H. Gordon, The Common Background of Greek and Hebrew Civilizations (1965); A. G. Van Daalen, Samson (1966); J. Gray, Joshua, Judges and Ruth (1967); T. Dothan, The Philistines and their Material Culture (in Hebrew) (1967); C. E. Armerding, The Heroic Ages of Greece and Israel: A Literary-Historical Comparison (Doctoral Dissertation, University Microfilms) (1968); T. Gaster, Myth, Legend, and Custom in the Old Testament (1969), 433-443; G. G. Cohen, “Samson and Hercules: A Comparison Between the Feats of Samson and the Labours of Hercules,” EQ 42 (1970), 131-141.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

(shimshon.

1. Name:

Derived probably from shemesh, "sun" with the diminutive ending -on, meaning "little sun" or "sunny," or perhaps "sun-man"; Sampson; Latin and English, Samson): His home was near Bethshemesh, which means "house of the sun." Compare the similar formation shimshay (Ezr 4:8,9,17,23).

2. Character:

Samson was a judge, perhaps the last before Samuel. He was a Nazirite of the tribe of Da (Jud 13:5); a man of prodigious strength, a giant and a gymnast--the Hebrew Hercules, a strange champion for Yahweh! He intensely hated the Philistines who had oppressed Israel some 40 years (Jud 13:1), and was willing to fight them alone. He seems to have been actuated by little less than personal vengeance, yet in the New Testament he is named among the heroes of faith (Heb 11:32), and was in no ordinary sense an nodetitle worthy. He was good-natured, sarcastic, full of humor, and fought with his wits as well as with his fists. Milton has graphically portrayed his character in his dramatic poem Samson Agonistes (1671), on which Handel built his oratorio, Samson (1743).

3. Story of His Life:

The story of Samson’s life is unique among the biographies of the Old Testament. It is related in Judges 13-16. Like Isaac, Samuel and John the Baptist, he was a child of prayer (13:8,12). To Manoah’s wife the angel of Yahweh appeared twice (13:3,9), directing that the child which should be born to them should be a Nazirite from the womb, and that he would "begin to save Israel out of the hand of the Philistines" (13:5,7,14). The spirit of Yahweh first began to move him in Mahaneh-dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol (13:25). On his arriving at manhood, five remarkable circumstances are recorded of him.

(1) His marriage with a Philistine woman of Timnah (Judges 14). His parents objected to the alliance (Jud 14:3), but Samson’s motive in marrying her was that he "sought an occasion against the Philistines" At the wedding feast Samson propounded to his guests a riddle, wagering that if they guessed its answer he would give them 30 changes of raiment. Dr. Moore felicitously renders the text of the riddle thus:

`Out of the eater came something to eat,

And out of the strong came something sweet’ (Jud 14:14).

The Philistines threatened the life of his bride, and she in turn wrung from Samson the answer; whereupon he retorted (in Dr. Moore’s version):

`If with my heifer ye did not plow,

Ye had not found out my riddle, I trow’ (Jud 14:18).

Accordingly, in revenge, Samson went down to Ashkelon, slew some 30 men, and paid his debt; he even went home without his wife, and her father to save her from shame gave her to Samson’s "best man" (Jud 14:20). It has been suggested by W. R. Smith (Kinship and Marriage in Early Arabia, 70-76) that Samson did not from the first intend to take his bride to his home, his marriage being what is known among the Arabs as a tsadiqat, or gift marriage, by which is meant that the husband becomes a part of the wife’s tribe. This assumes that the social relations of the Hebrews at that time were matriarchate, the wife remaining with her family, of which custom there are other traces in the Old Testament, the husband merely visiting the wife from time to time. But this is not so obvious in Samson’s case in view of his pique (Jud 14:19), and especially in view of his parents’ objection to his marrying outside of Israel (Jud 14:3). Not knowing that his bride had been given by her father to his friend, Samson went down to Timnah to visit her, with a kid; when he discovered, however, that he had been taken advantage of, he went out and caught 300 jackals, and putting firebrands between every two tails, he burned up the grain fields and olive yards of the Philistines. The Philistines, however, showed they could play with fire, too, and burned his wife and her father. Thereupon, Samson smote the Philistines in revenge, "hip and thigh" (Jud 15:1-8).

(2) When he escaped to Etam, an almost vertical rock cliff in Judah (by some identified with `Araq Ismain) not far from Zorah, Samson’s home, the Philistines invaded Judah, encamped at Lehi above Etam, and demanded the surrender of their arch-enemy. The men of Judah were willing to hand Samson over to the Philistines, and accordingly went down to the cliff Etam, bound Samson and brought him up where the Philistines were encamped (Jud 15:9-13). When Samson came to Lehi the Philistines shouted as they met him, whereupon the spirit of Yahweh came mightily upon him, so that he broke loose from the two new ropes with which the 3,000 men of Judah had bound him, and seizing a fresh jawbone of an ass he smote with it 1,000 men of the Philistines, boasting as he did so in pun-like poetry, `With the jawbone of an ass, m-ass upon m-ass’; or, as Dr. Moore translates the passage, `With the bone of an ass, I ass-ailed my ass-ailants’ (Jud 15:16). At the same time, Samson reverently gave Yahweh the glory of his victory (Jud 15:18). Samson being thirsty, Yahweh provided water for him at a place called En-hakkore, or "Partridge Spring," or "the Spring of the Caller"--another name for partridge (Jud 15:17-19).

(3) Samson next went down to Gaza, to the very stronghold of the Philistines, their chief city. There he saw a harlot, and, his passions not being under control, he went in unto her. It was soon noised about that Samson, the Hebrew giant, was in the city. Accordingly, the Philistines laid wait for him. But Samson arose at midnight and laid hold of the doors of the gate and their two posts, and carried them a full quarter of a mile up to the top of the mountain that looketh toward Hebron (Jud 16:1-3).

(4) From Gaza Samson betook himself to the valley of Sorek where he fell in love with another Philistine woman, named Delilah, through whose machinations he lost his spiritual power. The Philistine lords bribed her with a very large sum to deliver him into their hands. Three times Samson deceived her as to the secret of his strength, but at last he explains that he is a Nazirite, and that his hair, which has never been shorn, is the secret of his wonderful power. J. G. Frazer (Golden Bough, III, 390 ff) has shown that the belief that some mysterious power resides in the hair is still widespread among savage peoples, e.g. the Fiji Islanders. Thus, Samson fell. By disclosing to Delilah this secret, he broke his covenant vow, and the Spirit of God departed from him (Jud 16:4-20). The Philistines laid hold on him, put out his eyes, brought him down to Gaza, bound him with fetters, and forced him to grind in the prison house. Grinding was women’s work! It is at this point that Milton catches the picture and writes,

"Eyeless in Gaza, at the mill with slaves."

Howbeit, the hair of his head began to grow again; but his eyes did not! (Jud 16:21,22).

(5) The final incident recorded of Samson is in connection with a great sacrificial feast which the Philistine lords gave in honor of Dagon, their god. In their joyous celebration they sang in rustic rhythm:

`Our god has given us into our hand

The foe of our land,

Whom even our most powerful band

Was never able to withstand’ (Jud 16:24).

This song was accompanied probably, as Mr. Macalister suggests, by hand-clapping (Gezer, 129). When they became still more merry, they called for Samson to play the buffoon, and by his pranks to entertain the assembled multitude. The house of Dagon was full of people; about 3,000 were upon the roof beholding as Samson made sport. With the new growth of his hair his strength had returned to him. The dismantled giant longed to be avenged on his adversaries for at least one of his two eyes (Jud 16:28). He prayed, and Yahweh heard his prayer. Guided by his attendant, he took hold of the wooden posts of the two middle pillars upon which the portico of the house rested, and slipping them off their pedestals, the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people that were therein. "So the dead that he slew at his death were more than they that he slew in his life" (Jud 16:29,30). His kinsmen came and carried him up and buried him near his boyhood home, between Zorah and Eshtaol, in the family burying-ground of his father. "And he judged Israel twenty years" (Jud 16:31).

4. Historical Value:


5. Religious Value:

Not a few important and suggestive lessons are deducible from the hero’s life:

(1) Samson was the object of parental solicitude from even before his birth. One of the most suggestive and beautiful prayers in the Old Testament is that of Manoah for guidance in the training of his yet unborn child (Jud 13:8). Whatever our estimate of his personality is, Samson was closely linked to the covenant.

(2) He was endowed with the Spirit of Yahweh--the spirit of personal patriotism, the spirit of vengeance upon a foe of 40 years’ standing (Jud 13:1,25; 14:6-19; 15:14).

(3) He also prayed, and Yahweh answered him, though in judgment (Jud 16:30). But he was prodigal of his strength. Samson had spiritual power and performed feats which an ordinary man would hardly perform. But he was unconscious of his high vocation. In a moment of weakness he yielded to Delilah and divulged the secret of his strength. He was careless of his personal endowment. He did not realize that physical endowments no less than spiritual are gifts from God, and that to retain them we must be obedient.

(4) He was passionate and therefore weak. The animal of his nature was never curbed, but rather ran unchained and free. He was given to sudden fury. Samson was a wild, self-willed man. Passion ruled. He could not resist the blandishments of women. In short, he was an overgrown schoolboy, without self-mastery.

(5) He accordingly wrought no permanent deliverance for Israel; he lacked the spirit of cooperation. He undertook a task far too great for even a giant single-handed. Yet, it must be allowed that Samson paved the way for Saul and David. He began the deliverance of Israel from the Philistines. He must, therefore, be judged according to his times. In his days there was unrestrained individual independence on every side, each one doing as he pleased. Samson differed from his contemporaries in that he was a hero of faith (Heb 11:32). He was a Nazirite, and therefore dedicated to God. He was given to revenge, yet he was ready to sacrifice himself in order that his own and his people’s enemies might be overthrown. He was willing to lay down his own life for the sake of his fellow-tribesmen--not to save his enemies, however, but to kill them. (Compare Mt 5:43 f; Ro 5:10.)

LITERATURE.

(1) Comma. on Jgs, notably those by G. F. Moore, ICC, 1895; Budde, Kurzer Handkommentar, 1897; Nowack, Handkommentar, 1900; E. L. Curtis, The Bible for Home and School, 1913; Bachmann, 1868; Keil, 1862; Farrar in Ellicott’s Commentaries; Watson, Expositor’s Bible. (2) Articles on "Samson" in the various Bible Dictionaries and Encyclopedias; in particular those by Budde, HDB; C. W. Emmet, in 1-vol HDB; S. A. Cook, New Encyclopedia Brit; Davis, Dict. of the Bible.

George L. Robinson