Gershon Galil, «A New Look at the Inscriptions of Tiglath-pileser III», Vol. 81 (2000) 511-520
The first part of the article re-examines the inscriptions of Tiglath-pileser III, mainly Summary inscriptions 4, 9, 10 and Ann. 18, 23, 24. The author proposes a new reading to line 6 of Summ. 4 by adding a verb (abil or aks$ud) at the end of this line, and separating lines 5-6 from lines 7-8. In the author’s opinion Ann. 18 and 24 are indeed parallel versions depicting the events of 732, yet, Ann. 18 describes the conquest of Galilee, while Ann. 24 deals with the conquest of Damascus. The second part of the article examines the relations between Assyria and the West in the days of Tiglath-pileser III in light of the new proposals offered in the first part of the article.
toponyms consist of a -h suffix yet this does not indicate the time they were written: compare hchy / -Chy, etc.
The Gilead is a flexible territorial term, mentioned in the Bible more than 150 times. It often refers to small- and large-scale territories between the Arnon River in the south and the Yarmuk River in the north, and often even represents the Bashan. Determining the extent of the area ruled by Pekah is difficult, but this passage indicates that territories located in Transjordan were included within his kingdom.
Additional proof that several districts in the Gilead were included within the kingdom of Israel can be seen in 2 Kgs 15,25. This passage is faulty and several proposals for its reconstruction have been offered. It includes four indisputable components: (1) But Pekah the son of Remaliah, a captain of his, conspired against him, (2) and smote him in Samaria, in the palace of the kings’ house (3) and with him fifty men of the Gileadites; (4) and he killed him, and reigned in his room.
Following the second component are four words whose meaning is unclear:
hyr)h t)w bwgr) t). The toponym Argob defines the area of the Bashan (1 Kgs 4,13; Deut 3; 4,13-14). The description of Solomon’s districts in 1 Kgs 4,13 is extremely important because it defines the administrative districts of the son of Geber:
N#bb r#) bwgr) lbx wl d(lgb r#) h#nm Nb ry)y twx wl.
If we assume that the word hyr) results from ry)y the passages in 1 Kgs 4,13 and 2 Kgs 15,25 would be symmetric: in the first ry)y twx and bwgr) lbx and in the second ry)y (twx) and bwgr) (lbx). It is possible then, that Pekah was in charge of an administrative district, which included regions in the Bashan and in the Gilead, much like the son of Geber in the time of Solomon. In light of this proposal the passage in 1 Kgs 15,25 may be reconstructed thus: But Pekah the son of Remaliah, his officer in [the region of] Argob and [in the towns of] Jair, conspired against him5. The fact that a company of fifty Gileadean warriors participated in the revolt supports this assumption. Apparently it was an élite unit at the disposal of Pekah, and was presumably used as his personal guard on account of his position as head of a district whose security was highly sensitive, especially around the Israel-Aram border.
In light of the tight and unique bonds between Pekah and Rezin (which probably began prior to Pekah’s coronation: see 2 Kgs 15,37), it is unreasonable to conclude that the Gilead was torn away from Israel and annexed to Damascus, in the time of Pekah. Moreover, if the above reconstruction is correct it is safe to assume that the Argob region was also included within the kingdom of Pekah (and not only the Gilead).
To resolve the difficulties in Tadmor’s proposals, a new reading for line 6' of summary inscription 4 is offered. In my opinion we should add the verb abil or aks$ud at the end of line 6' and separate lines 5'-6' from lines 7'-8'. My new translation of lines 5'-6' of summary inscription 4 is as follows: [I ruled/conquered (the land) from Kash]puna, which is on the shore of the upper sea [up to Qa]-ni-te Gil[ead and (up to)] Abel-Shit[t[i, which is on the border