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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Bithiah

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(Heb. Bithyah', בַּתְיָה, prob. for בִּתאּיָהּ, daughter [i.e. worshipper] of Jehovah; Sept. Βεθθία v. r. Βετθία), daughter of a Pharaoh, and wife of Mered, a descendant of Judah (1 Chronicles 4:18), by whom she had several sons (prob. those enumerated in the latter part of 1 Chronicles 4:17). B.C. cir. 1658. The date of Mered is not positively determined by the genealogy in which his name occurs, some portion of it having apparently been lost. It is probable, however, that he should be referred to the time before the Exodus, or to a period not much later. Pharaoh in this place might be conjectured not to be the Egyptian regal title, but to be or represent a Hebrew name; but the name Bithiah probably implies conversion, and the other wife of Mered seems to be called " the Jewess." Unless we suppose a transposition in the text, or the loss of some of the names of the children of Mered's wives, we must consider the name of Bithiah understood before " she bare Miriam" (1 Chronicles 4:17), and the latter part of 1 Chronicles 4:18 and 1 Chronicles 4:19 to be recapitulatory; but the Sept. does not admit any except the second of these conjectures. (See MERED). The Scriptures, as well as the Egyptian monuments, show that the Pharaohs intermarried with foreigners; but such alliances seem to have been contracted with royal families alone. Hence Mered would seem to have been a person of some distinction. It is possible that Bithiah was only an adopted daughter of Pharaoh, or she may have become the wife of Mered in some way through captivity. There is, however, no ground for considering her to have been a concubine; on the contrary, she is shown to be a wife, from her taking precedence of one specially designated as such. (See HODIJAH).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Bithiah'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/b/bithiah.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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