Othniel from "Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum"
|Occupation||First Judge of Israel|
Othniel was related to Caleb, as his father Kenaz was Caleb's brother. The Talmud (Sotah 11b) argues that Othniel was Caleb's brother. When Caleb promises the hand of his daughter Achsah to him who will conquer the land of Debir, it is Othniel who rises to the challenge, thus becoming Caleb's son-in-law (Joshua 15:16, 17; Judges 1:13).
Campaign as a Judge
Some time after the death of Joshua, the Israelites once again turned to sin and fell under the subjection of Chushan-rishathaim, the king of Aram-Naharaim in Mesopotamia, because of the transgressions against God. He oppressed them for eight years; when they "cried" unto God, Othniel was raised up to be their deliverer. He was the son of Kenaz, who was the younger brother of Caleb according to Bible translations such as the New American Bible (Judg. 3:8). He is the only Judge mentioned connected with the Tribe of Judah. Under Othniel, peace lasted for forty years.
Judges in the Bible
|Italics indicate individuals not explicitly described as judges|
|Book of Joshua|
|Book of Judges|
|First Book of Samuel|
The tomb of Othniel Ben Knaz is located in Hebron in a traditional burial cave. Located approximately 200 meters west of the Beit Hadassah building, it has been revered as a site for prayers for generations.
The structure of the tomb corresponds to the way Jewish burial sites were made in the times of the Mishnah, as a family burial cave with compartments in the sides.
Menachem Mendel of Kamenitz, the first hotelier in the Land of Israel  references his visit to the Tomb of Othniel in his 1839 book Sefer Korot Ha-Itim. He states, "outside of the city [of Hebron] I went to the grave of Othniel ben Kenaz and, next to him, are laid to rest 9 students in niches in the wall of a shelter standing in a vineyard. I gave 20 pa’res to the owner of the vineyard." 
The author and traveler JJ Benjamin mentioned visiting the tomb in his 1859 book Eight Years in Asia and Africa. He states, "Likewise outside the city, towards the south, in a vineyard, which was purchased by the Jews, are the graves of the father of King David and of the first Judge, Othniel, the son of Kinah." 
- "Babylonian Talmud: Sotah 11". halakhah.com. Retrieved 2016-01-07.
- TEXT: Judges 1:1-2:5, Grace Baptist Church
- "Joshua 15 / Hebrew - English Bible / Mechon-Mamre". www.mechon-mamre.org. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "Shoftim - Chapter 3". www.chabad.org. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "The Cave of Othniel Ben Knaz - First Judge of Israel". the Jewish Community of Hebron. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "REVACH L'DAF - BAVA BASRA 101". www.dafyomi.co.il. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "The first Holy Land hotelier - Local Israel - Jerusalem Post". www.jpost.com. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- ""Book of the Occurrences of the Times to Jeshurun in the Land of Israel" by David G. Cook and Sol P. Cohen". repository.upenn.edu. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "Eight years in Asia and Africa from 1846-1855 : Israel Joseph Benjamin : Free Download & Streaming". Internet Archive. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "ביקור בל"ג בעומר – במערת עתניאל בן קנז". ערוץ 7. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- "קינות במערת עתניאל בן קנז. תיעוד מצולם". ערוץ 7. Retrieved 2016-01-11.
- Book of Judges article of the Jewish Encyclopedia
- Reference to Othniel in the Book of Judges full text from Chabad
- Reference to Othniel in the Book of Judges full text from Mechon-Mamre
- Tomb of Othniel page on Hebron.com
- Video of visit to Tomb of Othniel in 2011
- Video of visit to Tomb of Othniel in 2013
- Photos of Tomb of Othniel from old Hebron website
- Photos of Tomb of Othniel from Hebron Fund website
- Photos and information on Tomb of Othniel from Shavei Hevron website
|Judge of Israel||Succeeded by