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Biblical Character
    ( -circa 1067 BC)
    Born in Israel
    Name in Hebrew is Dvora, roughly translating to the word, 'Bee'
    Name in Arabic is Daborah
    Wife of Lappidoth, appears in the Book of Judges 4-5
    Prophet of the God of the Israelites for forty years (1107-1067)
    Fourth Judge of pre-monarchic Israel
    Leader of the successful counterattack against Jabin the Canaanite King and his military force commander, Sisera (Judges 4)
    Alleged author of the ancient Hebrew text, 'The Song of Deborah'
    Despite being one of the best known Prophets, she appears in only two chapters in the Book of Judges, and nowhere else in the Bible.
    She is frequently referred to as 'the Biblical Joan of Arc,' even though she came first, preceding Joan by thousands of years.
    Debate has ensued over the actual age of the Song of Deborah (although it is called the oldest Hebrew poetry but may have been written as late as 7th Century BC).
    The argument that it was written at a later date is supported by her Song containing several inconsistencies with the rest of the text (ex., the number of participating tribes in the war, the manner of Jael killing Sisera, etc.)
    It is widely believed that she delivered her advice and prophecies beneath a palm tree in order to avoid indoor seclusion with unrelated men.
    She was known for being prideful, brashly referring to herself as 'the Mother of Israel' in her Song.
    Midrashic texts claim that her pride ultimately cost her the powers of prophecy.
    She goes after Sisera's mother near the end of her Song.
    She has been heavily sexualized in centuries' worth of 'bad Bible art.'
    She is the namesake for the 'dimensionless number' ('the Deborah Number').
    She prophesied that Sisera would be defeated and she proved prescient.
    She prophesied that Barak would achieve victory but would not share in the glory because he was reluctant to lead the counterattack alone (again proving correct).
    She was the only one who could withstand the voice of Sisera, which was known to kill animals and crumble walls with its force (these were the days before earplugs).
    She and Jael have been subjected to backhanded compliments by contemporary theologians - that God's existence was proven by Jabin and Sisera being delivered by women, the 'ultimate degradation.'
    She is the only female Judge in the Book of Judges, and is one of only six female Prophets in the Hebrew Bible.
    She is still called 'the Mother of Israel' in many Israeli circles, so clearly not everyone had a problem with her 'pride.'
    Her ascension to power is remarkable in retrospect; given the patriarchal nature of Israeli society in the Biblical era, where women had few rights.
    Rabbis frequently group her Song among the most important and beautiful pieces of Hebrew poetry in the Old Testament, alongside the Song at the Sea, the Song of Moses, the Song of David, the Song of Solomon, and the Song of Jehoshaphat.
    Midrashic texts number her among the twenty-three Israelite women of outstanding righteousness.

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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