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Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(Heb. Rabshakeh', רִבְשָׁקֵה ; Sept. ῾Ραψᾶκης v. r. ῾Ραβσάκης ), an Aramaic name, signifying chief cup-bearer, but applied to an Assyrian general (2 Kings 18:17; 2 Kings 18:19; 2 Kings 18:26; 2 Kings 18:28; 2 Kings 18:37; 2 Kings 19:4; 2 Kings 19:8; Isaiah 36:2; Isaiah 36:4; Isaiah 36:12-13; Isaiah 36:22; Isaiah 37:4; Isaiah 37:8). B.C. 713. Notwithstanding its seemingly official significance, it appears to have been used as a proper name, as Butler with us; for the person who bore it was a military chief in high command under Sennacherib, king of Assyria. Yet it is not impossible, according to Oriental usages, that a royal cup-bearer should hold a military command; and the office itself was one of high distinction, in the same way as Rab-saris denotes the chief eunuch, and Rab-mag, possibly, the chief priest. See Rawlinson, Ancient Monarchies, 2, 440. Luther, in his version, is not quite consistent, sometimes (2 Kings 18:17; Isaiah 36:2) giving Rab- shakeh as a proper name, but ordinarily translating it as a title of office arch-cupbearer (der Erzschenke). The word Rab may be found translated in many places of the English version; for instance, 2 Kings 25:8; 2 Kings 25:20; Jeremiah 39:11; Daniel 2:14 (רִבאּטִבָּחַים ), Rab-tabbachin, "captain of the guard" in the margin, "chief marshal," "chief of the executioners;" Daniel 1:3, Rab-sarisin, "master of the eunuchs;" 2:48 (רִבאּסַגְנַין ), Rab-signin, "chief of the governors;" 4:9; 5:11 (רִבאּחִרטֻמַּין ), Rab-chartummin, "master of the magicians;' Jonah 1:6 (רִב הִחֹבֵל ), Rab-hachobel, "ship-master." It enters into the titles Rabbi, Rabboni, and the name Rabbah. (See RABBI).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Rab-Shakeh'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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Rab-Shakeh (2)
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