The Lexham Bible Dictionary
Samuel the Prophet
Samuel the Prophet (שְׁמוּאֵל‎, shemu'el; Σαμουὴλ, Samouēl). A prophet, priest, and the last judge of Israel. Son of Elkanah and Hannah.
The Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary
Samuel (Person)
SAMUEL (PERSON) [Heb šĕmûʾēl (שְׁמוּאֵל)]. The Hebrew Bible portrays Samuel in a variety of roles: priest, prophet, judge, and “seer.” Moreover, at a critical juncture in the history of the Israelite people, Samuel appears very instrumental in the establishment of the monarchy. In the words of one
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Samuel (Person)
Samuel (Person). Last of the judges, his name means “name of God,” or “His name is El” (El: God of strength and power). The play on words in 1 Samuel 1:20 (cf. Ex 2:10) is not intended to be an explanation of the meaning of Samuel’s name; Hannah’s words recall only her prayer and the circumstances surrounding
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Samuel samʹ-əl [Heb. šemûʾēl; Gk. Samouēl]. The last leader of Israel in the premonarchical period, who anointed both Saul and David. He functioned as a priest-prophet at Shiloh, as a seer at Ramah, and as the last of the great judges in early Israel.Neither the date of Samuel’s birth nor that
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
Samuel (Person)
SAMUEL (Person) Last of the judges, his name means “name of God” or “his name is El” (El is the name of the God of strength and power). The play on words in 1 Samuel 1:20 (cf. Ex 2:10) is not intended to be an explanation of the meaning of Samuel’s name; Hannah’s words recall only her prayer and the
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
Samuel (sam´yoo-uhl), a prophet who ruled Israel at the end of the period of the judges and who anointed Israel’s first two kings. He is the dominant figure in the first few chapters of the first of the two books of the Bible that bear his name.Samuel’s father, Elkanah, was an Ephraimite from the village
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
SAMUEL. One of the greatest leaders of Israel (2 Chr 35:18; Ps 99:6; Jer 15:1; Acts 3:24; Heb 11:32). Samuel came to Israel in one of her darkest hours. The Philistines, who for a long time had menaced the Israelites, were threatening to engulf them. But Hannah, the wife of Elkanah of Ramathaim-zophim
The New Bible Dictionary, Third Edition
SAMUEL (Heb. šemû’ēl, ‘(?) name of God’). 1. A Simeonite leader (Nu. 34:20), in neb; most evv have *Shemuel. 2. Grandson of Issachar (1 Ch. 7:2), in neb; most evv have *Shemuel. 3. The prophet, contemporary with Saul and David, whose career is related in 1 Sa., and who has given his name to the two
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Samuel (Heb. šĕmûʾēl)Samuel gave leadership to Israel in the critical period of transition from tribal existence under the judges to the establishment of monarchy. He is the central character of the first half of 1 Samuel, which bears his name. In these stories he appears in multiple roles of authority:
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Samuel [sămˊyŏo əl] (Heb. šemû˒ēl “name of God”).† An eleventh-century B.C. prophet, regarded as the last of the judges to rule Israel (Acts 13:20); a Levite (1 Chr. 6:28 [MT 13]; cf. v. 33; KJV “Shemuel”), son of Elkanah and Hannah (1 Sam. 1:20).Samuel’s birth was an answer to prayer
Catholic Bible Dictionary
SAMUEL (Hebrew, “his name is God”) The last and one of the greatest Judges of Israel. He was a transitional figure who helped to end the tribal configuration of Israel and inaugurate the monarchy. Samuel fulfilled multiple roles in his lifetime: priest, seer, prophet, and judge.
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Sam´uel was the son of Elkanah and Hannah, and was born at Ramathaimzophim, among the hills of Ephraim. [Ramah, No. 2.] (b.c. 1171.) Before his birth he was dedicated by his mother to the office of a Nazarite; and when a young child, 12 years old according to Josephus, he was placed in the temple, and
Key passages
1 Sa 1:9–9:25

Then Hannah got up after eating and drinking at Shiloh. (Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the temple of Yahweh.) She was deeply troubled, so she prayed to Yahweh and wept bitterly. She made a vow and said: “O Yahweh of hosts, if you will look with compassion …

See also