1. The last named of the five daughters of Zelophehad, of the tribe of Manasseh, whose case originated the law that in the event of a man dying without male issue his property should pass to his daughters (Nu 26:33; Nu 27:1; Nu 36:11 [where she is named second]; Jos 17:3). SEE ZELOPHEHAI ).
2. An ancient Canaanitish city, whose king is enumerated among the twenty-one overthrown in the conquest of the country (Jos 12:24).
From that time nothing is heard of it till after the disruption of Israel and Judah. It then reappears as a royal city, the residence of Jeroboam (1Ki 14:17; Sept. Σαριφά, i.e.? Zaieda), and of his successors, Baasha (1Ki 15:21,33), Elah (1Ki 16:8-9), and Zimri (ver. 15). It contained the royal sepulchers of one (ver. 6), and probably all the first four kings of the northern kingdom. Zimri was besieged there by Omri, and perished in the flames of his palace (ver. 18). The new king continued to reside there at first, but after six years he left it to his son Ahab (q.v.), at that time raised to the viceroyship; and removed to a new city which he built and named Shomr6n (Samaria), and which 'continued to be the capital of the northern kingdom till its fall. Once, and once only, does Tirzah reappear, as the seat of the conspiracy of Menahem ben-Gaddi against the wretched Shallum (2Ki 15:14,16); but as soon as his revolt had proved successful, Menahem removed the seat of his government to Samaria, and Tirzah was again left inobscurity. Its reputation for beauty throughout the country must have been wide-spread. It is in this sense that it is mentioned in the Song of Solomon, where the juxtaposition of Jerusalem is sufficient proof of the estimation in which it was held — "Beautiful as Tirzah, comely as Jerusalem" (Song 6:4). The Sept. (εὐδοκία) and. Vulg. (suavis ) do not, however, take tirtsah as a proper name in this passage. Its occurrence here on a level with Jerusalem has been held to indicate that the Song of Songs was the work of a writer belonging to the northern kingdom. But surely a poet, and so ardent a poet as the author of the, Song of Songs, may have been sufficiently independent of political considerations to go out of his own country if Tirzah can be said to be out of the country of a native of Judah- for a metaphor. SEE CANTICLES.
Eusebius (Onomuasf.. sv. θαρσιλά) mentions it in connection with Menahem, and identifies it with a "village of Samaritans in Batansea." There is, however, nothing in the Bible to lead to the inference that the Tirzah of the Israelitish monarchs was on the east of Jordan. Josephus merely mentions it (θαρσή, Ant. 8:12, 5). It is nowhere stated to what tribe this town belonged; but Adrichomius (Theaf. T. S. p. 74) and others place it in Manasseh. Lightfoot (Choreograph. Cent. c. 88) seems to suspect that Tirzah and Shechem were the same; for he says that "if Shechem and Tirzah were not one and the same town," it would appear that Jeroboam had removed when his son died from where he was when he first erected his idols (comp. 1Ki 12:25; 1Ki 14:17). It does not appear to be mentioned by the Jewish topographers, or any of the Christian travelers of the Middle Ages, except Brocarduls, who places "Thersa on a high mountain, three leagues (leucae) from Samaria to the east" (Descriptio Terrte Sanct. 7:13). This is exactly the direction, and very nearly the distance, of Tellizah, a place in the mountains north of Nablius, which was visited by Robinson (Bibl. Res. 3, 302) and Van de Velde in 1852 (Syr. and Pal. 3, 334). The town is on an eminence, which towards the east is exceedingly lofty, though, being at the edge of the central highlands, it is more approachable from the west. "The place is large and thriving, but without any obvious marks of antiquity (Robinson, Later Res. p. 302). Lieut. Coider, however, suggests the identity of Tirzah with a "mud hamlet" called Teidsir, twelve miles east of Jeba, which he found to have been once a place of importance, judging from the numerous rock-cut sepulchers burrowing under the houses, the fertile lands and fine olives around, and the monument of good masonry, apparently a Roman tomb. The position is beautiful, and the old main road leads to the place from Shechem (Tent Work in Palest. 1, 108).