ib'-zan (ibhtsan): The 10th judge of Israel. His city is given as Bethlehem (whether of Judah or Zebulun is not stated). He judged Israel 7 years, and when he died he was buried in his native place. The only personal details given about him in the Biblical narrative are that he had 30 sons and a like number of daughters. He sent all of his sons "abroad" for wives and brought husbands from "abroad" for all his daughters. The exact meaning of ha-chuts, "abroad," is mere matter of speculation, but the great social importance of the man and, possibly, alliances among tribes, are suggested in the brief narrative (Jg 12:8-10). Jewish tradition identifies Ibzan with Boaz of Bethlehem-Judah (Talmud, Babha', Bathra', 91a).
Ella Davis Isaacs