Polygamy is the practice or custom of having more than one wife or husband at the same time, and it is a legal term. Some of the most prominent characters in the Bible were known to practice it. Six of them are as follows:
After God changed his name from Abram to Abraham, Abraham became recognized as the common patriarch of the Abrahamic religions — Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Abraham was initially known as Abram until God changed his name to Abraham. All Jews, according to the Bible, are descended from the patriarch Abraham. Abraham had three wives: Sarah, his first wife (Genesis 11:29), and Hagar and Keturah, his subsidiary wives (Genesis 11:30). (Genesis 16:3; 25:1).
Esau, sometimes known as Edom, is the son of Isaac and Rebekah, and the son of Jacob and Rebekah. He is also Jacob's elder twin brother, making him the eldest twin of the two.
At the age of forty, Esau marries two Canaanite women: Judith, the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath, the daughter of Elon the Hittite. Genesis 26:34–35 depicts Esau's marriage to these two Canaanite women.
In order to appease his parents' displeasure with this arrangement, Esau traveled to the house of his uncle Ishmael and married his cousin Mahalath, who was the daughter of Ishmael and the sister of Nebajoth.
In Genesis 36, the story of Esau's family is addressed once more. Esau's wives are mentioned in the scripture as being two Canaanite women. They are Adah, the daughter of Elon the Hittite, Aholibamah, the daughter of Anah, the daughter of Zibeon the Hivite, and a third woman, Bashemath, Ishmael's daughter and sister of Nebajoth, and they are all from the tribe of Ephraim.
In Jewish tradition, Jacob is the traditional progenitor of the people of Israel, as he is Abraham's grandson and the son of Isaac and Rebekah.
In Genesis 29:15-28, Jacob is believed to have had twelve sons by four women: his wife, Leah and Rachel, and his concubines, Bilhah and Zilpah. Jacob's wives, Leah and Rachel, and his concubines, Bilhah and Zilpah, are all named.
1 Samuel 1:1-8 tells the story of a certain man from Ramathaimzophim, on Mount Ephraim, whose name was Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph, an Ephrathite, and whose name was Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph.
Elkanah was married to two women. The first wife's name was Hannah, and the second wife's name is Peninnah, according to the Bible. Hannah, on the other hand, had no offspring, although Peninnah did. Hannah eventually became the mother of a son named Samuel in honor of him.
In the Books of Samuel, David is a teenage shepherd who rises to prominence first as a singer, and subsequently as the victorious warrior who slew the giant Goliath, a champion of the Philistines in southern Canaan.
1 Samuel 25:39-44 records that David had seven and a half wives during his seven and a half years as king of Judah's rule at Hebron. These wives included Ahinoam, Abigail, Maacha, Haggith, Abital, and Eglah. Bathsheba was David's wife after he relocated his capital from Saul to Jerusalem.
Each of his first six wives gave him a son, with Bathsheba being the mother of four boys in all. Overall, according to scripture, David had 19 boys by various women and one daughter, Tamar, who was his only daughter.
According to the Old Testament, Solomon was a fabulously rich and clever king of the United Kingdom of Israel who succeeded his father David. Solomon was also known as Jedidiah in some circles.
As recorded in 1 Kings 11:1-3, Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines, according to the biblical narrative. The wives were referred to as foreign princesses in the press. They comprised the Pharaoh's daughter as well as women from Moab, Ammon, Edom, Sidon, and the Hittites, among other tribes. Naamah is the only one of Solomon's wives who is specifically referenced by name in the Bible.
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