Lem´uël (Hebrew Lemnuel', למוּאֵל, Pr 31:1; Sept. ὑπὸ θεοῦ, Vulgate Lamuel; also Lemoël, למוֹאֵל Pr 31:4; Sept. πάντα ποιεῖ, Vulgate Lamuel), an unknown prince, to whom the admonitory apothegms of Pr 31:2-9 were originally addressed by his mother. Most interpreters understand Solomon to be meant either symbolically (the name signifying to God, i.e. created by him) or by a pleasing epithet (see Rosenmüller, Scholia acl Prov. p. 718). The Rabbinical commentators identify Lemuel with Solomon, and tell a strange tale that when he married the daughter of Pharaoh, on the day of the dedication of the Temple, he assembled musicians of all kinds, and passed the night awake. On the morrow he slept till the fourth hour, with the keys of the Temple beneath his pillow, when his mother entered, and upbraided him in the words of Pr 31:2-9. Others (e.g. Grotius) refer it to Hezekiah (by a precarious etymology), while still others (e.g. Gesenius) think that no Israelite is referred to, but some neighboring petty Arabian prince. On the other hand, according to Eichhorn (Einleitulq, v. 106), Lemuel is altogether an imaginary person (so Ewald; comp. Bertholdt, v. 2196 sq.). Prof. Stuart (Comment. on Prov. p. 403 sq.) renders the expression "Lemuel, the king of Massa," and regards him as the brother of Agur, whom he makes to have been likewise a son of the queen of Massa, in the neighborhood of Dumah. SEE AGUR; SEE ITHIEL. In the reign of Hezekiah, a roving band of Simeonites drove out the Amalekites from Mount Seir and settled in their stead (1Ch 4:433), and from these exiles of Israelitish origin Hitzig conjectures that Lemuel and Agur were descended, the former having been born in the land of Israel; and that the name Lemuel is an older form of Nemuel, the firstborn of Simeon (Die Sprüche Salomo's, p. 310-314). But this interpretation is far-fetched; and none is more likely than that which fixes the epithet upon Solomon. SEE PROVERBS.

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