And there were more chief men found of the sons of Eleazar than
of the sons of Ithamar
Or heads of men, heads of their fathers' houses and families:
and thus were they divided; among the sons of Eleazar there were
sixteen chief men of the house of their fathers, and eight among the
sons of Ithamar, according to the house of their fathers;
in all twenty four, and into so many classes or courses did David divide them; Jarchi says at first when the tabernacle was at Shiloh, there were but sixteen courses, eight from Eleazar, and eight from Ithamar, as is explained in the treatise of fasting F14; but when David saw that there were more heads of men, or chief men of Eleazar's, he divided the courses of Eleazar into two parts, and fixed sixteen courses; and the courses of Ithamar he established as at first, eight courses; left them as they were, which he thinks appears from ( 1 Chronicles 24:6 ) but of the former number of courses, and when and by whom fixed, the Jews are divided F15; (See Gill on Luke 1:5). Perhaps there were none before David's time.
F14 T. Bab. Taanith, fol. 27. 1.
F15 T. Bab. Taanith, fol. 27. 1.