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[sawl] /sɔl/
the first king of Israel. I Sam. 9.
Also called Saul of Tarsus. the original name of the apostle Paul. Acts 9:1–30; 22:3.
a male given name: from a Hebrew word meaning “asked for.”. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Saul
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Go and inquire for one called Saul of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth.

  • And if Samuel appeared to Saul, how could it take place if Samuel had no members?

    The Phantom World Augustin Calmet
  • "By my Saul, I believe so," muttered the old gentleman, in deep anger.

    Roland Cashel Charles James Lever
  • Samuel's seeing led him to institute the monarchy under Saul.

    History of Religion

    Allan Menzies
  • When he dared to open his eyes he was blinded and dazed like the stricken Saul.

    In a Little Town Rupert Hughes
British Dictionary definitions for Saul


(Old Testament) the first king of Israel (?1020–1000 bc). He led Israel successfully against the Philistines, but was in continual conflict with the high priest Samuel. He became afflicted with madness and died by his own hand; succeeded by David
(New Testament) the name borne by Paul prior to his conversion (Acts 9: 1–30)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Saul

masc. proper name, Biblical first king of Israel, from Latin Saul, from Hebrew Shaul, literally "asked for," passive participle of sha'al "he asked for."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Saul in Culture

Saul definition

The first king of Israel, who battled repeatedly with the Philistines. He often felt great despair, which was soothed by David playing his harp. Saul later became jealous of David and tried to have him killed in battle. After a prophesied defeat by the Philistines, Saul killed himself.

Note: Saul was also the Apostle Paul's original name.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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