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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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Git´tites, inhabitants or natives of Gath (). Obed-edom, although a Levite, is called a Gittite (), possibly because he had been with David when at Gath, but much more probably from his being a native of Gath-rimmon, which was a city of the Levites. There seems no reason for extending this interpretation to Ittai (), seeing that David expressly calls him 'a stranger' (foreigner), and, what is more, 'an exile.' He was at the head of 600 men, who were also Gittites, for they are called () his 'brethren.' They appear to have formed a foreign troop of experienced warriors, chiefly from Gath, in the pay and service of David; which they had perhaps entered in the first instance for the sake of sharing in the booty obtainable in his wars. We can conceive that the presence of such a troop must have been useful to the king in giving to the Hebrew army that organization and discipline which it did not possess before his time.





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Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Gittites'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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