How did King Solomon and King David keep their marital duties to so many wives? Was there a system of rights the woman of the kings Harem enjoyed?

  • I always assumed that the vast majority of these marriages were short, maybe a few months or so. He didn’t have 1000 wives at the same time
    – Chatzkel
    Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 5:17
  • 2
    And a lot of Solomon's were diplomatic marriages -- instead of an ambassador, you sent a princess of yours to go be one of the king's wives. I imagine in that arrangement, nobody expected frequent intimacy. David's situation was more personal ... he's recorded as having six, though the midrash implies that later in life he did "max out" at 18.
    – Shalom
    Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 10:16
  • @Shalom which midrash can one read this in? Can you give me an exact link, please.
    – ninamag
    Commented Jan 31, 2023 at 11:22
  • @ninamag on the diplomatic marriages it's really just the context of the verses and an understanding of the time. The limit of 18 derived from David having six and being told "you could have more like this, and more again" (but why'd you have to take Batsheva?!) is in the Talmud Sanhedrin 21a: sefaria.org/Sanhedrin.21a.9?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en That David later maxed out appears one page later, Sanhedrin 22a. (Actually it just says "sorry I'm not allowed to marry you", but Rashi explains because he maxed out.) sefaria.org/Sanhedrin.22a.13?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en
    – Shalom
    Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 2:42

1 Answer 1


Once a man has fulfilled the mitzvah or peru irevu (having children) if the wife agrees to forgive his obligation then he's free from that obligation. S.A. E.H. 76:6 We know that Solomon had at least one son and two daughters so that would have qualified as having fulfilled the mitzvah, at least according to one opinion (bais hillel). We'll assume that he held like that opinion.

(Sorry, some sources are in Hebrew.)

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