Ahithophel


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Related to Ahithophel: Absalom

Ahithophel

(əhĭth`əfĕl), in the Bible, David's counselor who joined with Absalom against David. He killed himself when Absalom ignored his counsel. He may have been the grandfather of Bath-sheba. The Vulgate form of the name is Achitophel.

Ahithophel

, Achitophel Old Testament
a member of David's council, who became one of Absalom's advisers in his rebellion and hanged himself when his advice was overruled (II Samuel 15:12--17:23)
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Our impression from everything he does, intensified by the way in which the narrative lingers over them, is that this is the suicide of a person who anticipates future events and does what he does out of level-headed consideration, as befits a sage like Ahithophel.
Because Ahithophel is not a warrior and his suicide does not take place in battle, his chosen instrument is not a weapon (unlike Abimelech, Saul, and Saul's squire, who were killed or killed themselves with a sword) but a noose.
The first reference to Ahithophel in the Bible relates to the growing strength of the rebellion: Absalom also sent [to fetch] Ahithophel the Gilonite, David's counselor, from his town, Giloh.
Ahithophel is not painted in such negative colors as Abimelech is, whence another difference between them.
Ahithophel kills himself before open warfare breaks out between the forces of Absalom and David.