Zeruiah (/zəˈrjə/ צרויה‎ sometimes transliterated Tzruya or Zeruya) was a sister of King David. According to both and the Babylonian Talmud, Zeruiah was a daughter of Jesse and sister of Abigail, to whom reference is made in 1 Chronicles (1 Chronicles 2:13–17) and Samuel 2 (2 Samuel 17:25). Zeruiah had three sons, Abishai, Joab, and Asahel, David's nephews, all of whom were soldiers in David's army.[1]

Very little is told of her. However, her sons are invariably mentioned with the matronymic "son of Zeruiah", in marked contrast to most other Biblical characters (and people in many other cultures) who are known by a patronymic. This suggests that she was an exceptionally important person, though the specific circumstances are not given.

Her name is used, though not very frequently, as a female given name in modern Israel (see Tzruya Lahav, Zeruya Shalev).


  1. ^ Shalev, Z. (2006). Literary protagonists read the bible. Hebrew Studies, 389-393.