The king of Tirzah, one
To what tribe this place fell is nowhere said: Adrichomius F21 places it in the tribe of Manasseh; and so does Bunting F23, who says of it, that it was a fair and beautiful city, situated on a high and pleasant mountain, in the tribe of Manasseh, twenty four miles from Jerusalem to the north: here Jeroboam had his royal seat, and so his successors unto Omri, ( 1 Kings 14:17 ) ( 15:33 ) ( 1 Kings 16:6 1 Kings 16:8 1 Kings 16:9 1 Kings 16:15 1 Kings 16:17 1 Kings 16:23 ) ; and Dr Lightfoot F24 seems to suspect as if Shechem in Mount Ephraim and Tirzah were the same; for, he says, if Shechem and Tirzah were not one and the same town, it appears that Jeroboam had removed his court, when his son died, from where it was when he first erected his idols; compare ( 1 Kings 12:25 ) , with ( 1 Kings 14:17 ) ; and so it may argue that there was some space between: it was, no doubt, a very pleasant and beautiful city, as not only appears from its name, but from the allusion to it in ( Song of Solomon 6:4 ) ;
all the kings thirty and one:
it may seem strange that, in so small a country as Canaan was, there should be so many kings in it, since the length of it from Dan to Beersheba was scarce an hundred sixty miles, as Jerom F25 says; who further observes, that he was ashamed to give the breadth of it, lest it should give occasion to Heathens to blaspheme; for, adds he, from Joppa to our little village Bethlehem (where they then were) were forty six miles, to which succeeded only a vast desert: but it may be observed, that in ancient times, in other countries, there were a great many kings, as here in Britain, and in France, Spain, and Germany, as Bishop Patrick has observed from several writers; and Strabo F26 testifies the same of the cities of Phoenicia or Canaan, that they had each of them separate kings, as Joshua here describes them.
F21 Theatrum Terrae Sanct. p. 74.
F23 Travels p. 160.
F24 Works, vol. 1. p. 78.
F25 Epist. Dardano, tom. 3. p. 22. I. K.
F26 Geograph. l. 16. p. 519.