Facts about Goliath

Born: c. 1060 B.C.
Birthplace: Gath, Palestine
Best known as: The giant slain by David's slingshot


Goliath Biography

Goliath was a giant soldier from Gath in ancient Palestine, according to a famous story in the biblical book 1 Samuel. The 17th chapter describes an armed clash between the Philistines, led by Goliath, and the army of Israel. Despite Goliath’s intimidating size, the unlikely Judean boy-hero David meets him on the field of battle. David slings a fatal stone that hits the giant between the eyes and fells him. David beheads the fallen Goliath, Israel wins in a rout and David goes on to become king. In sports, politics, business and other arenas, a competition between seemingly mismatched opponents is sometimes described as “David and Goliath” or “David versus Goliath.”

Extra credit

In 2005, archaelogists at the likely site of Gath found the word “Goliath” inscribed in an ancient language on a pottery shard… According to the King James version of the Bible, Goliath’s height was “six cubits and a span” — roughly three meters, or more than nine feet, in modern terms.


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