King Solomon was the ruler of ancient Israel who reigned from 961-922 BC (8). He is the son of David and Bathsheba. Solomon succeeded his father as king and his territory extended from the Euphrates River to the land of the Philistines, and to the border of Egypt. With his wealth he built the great Temple of Jerusalem. In 950 BCE Solomon's household included 700 wives and 300 other mistresses (1). To insure the future peace and security of his kingdom, Solomon yielded to the custom of the times and made many domestic alliances with subject races and tribes by marrying foreign women.
An able administrator, Solomon kept the kingdom of Israel largely intact, strengthened its protection, and made alliances with several surrounding nations. He united his already strong position and even extended his influence by skillful diplomacy rather than war (8). International commerce and a large copper-mining industry aided in Solomon's wealth. Contact with other nations showed his advanced intelligence. Solomon displayed political and administrative wisdom and showed himself equal to his father by taking full advantage of the chance for economic expansion.
The Song of Solomon is a book of the Old Testament. It is a unique collection of love poetry. In Christian versions of the Bible it usually appears after the Book of Ecclesiastes. In the Hebrew Bible it is found after the Book of Job. It is believed to be written by King Solomon, but the actual author or authors of the book are unknown. It is a non-religious subject so it did not appear in all pre-Christian Jewish literature. The Song of Solomon, also known as the Song of Songs, is
Bibliography: 3) Elkins, William R. Song of Songs. New York: Vantage Press Inc., 1956. 4) Fisher, Vardis. The Valley of Vision. Canada: McLeod, George J., 1951. 9) Russell, L. M. "God with us" The Christian Century Dec. 1991: 108. 11) The Encyclopedia of Jewish Religion. 378-9. 1965. 12) The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia. Volume 9, 636-7. New York: KTAV Publishing House inc., 1969. 13) Young, P. "Solomon so Long?" History Today Aug. 1996: 3-4.