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Adriel (whose name means flock of God) was a nobleman in the ancient kingdom of Israel. Adriel was the son of Barzillai, the Meholathite, to whom Saul gave in marriage his daughter Merab (1 Sam. 18:19). The five sons that sprang from this union were put to death by the Gibeonites (2 Sam. 21:8, 9. Here it is said that Michal "brought up" [R.V., "bare"] these five sons, either that she treated them as if she had been their own mother, or that for "Michal" we should read "Merab", as in 1 Sam. 18:19).[1] Thus Adriel was the son-in-law of King Saul, and the brother-in-law of King David and Queen Michal, who raised Adriel's children as their own.

In 2 Samuel 21:8 it states that Michal daughter of Saul had 5 sons with Adriel son of Barzillai. However, as Michal was punished to be barren until the day of her death, it is thought that the sons were originally born to her sister Merab, who died. Merab was the older daughter of Saul initially promised to David, but was instead given as wife to Adriel the Meholathite. Due to that later discrepancy that states Michal as the wife of Adriel Martins instead of Merab as first said in 1st Samuel, many scholars believe this to be an ancient copyist error that should have read Merab in 2 Samuel 21:8 [2][3]

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainEaston, Matthew George (1897). "Adriel". Easton's Bible Dictionary (New and revised ed.). T. Nelson and Sons. 


  1. ^ Mandel, David (2007). Who's Who in the Jewish Bible. Jewish Publication Society. p. 20. ISBN 978-0-8276-0863-4. 
  2. ^ "Did Michal have any children or not?". Retrieved 2014-05-06. 
  3. ^ The New Bible Dictionary. Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers. 1962.