I have encountered the author of Tehillim referred to directly as David HaMelekh. However, on no small number of occasions, I've also encountered the author of Tehillim referred to as "The Psalmist" (presumably "HaMezamer" in Hebrew).

For those who hold that David HaMelekh indeed authored Tehillim, why refer to him as "The Psalmist"? On a somewhat related note, why are verses in the prophets sometimes referenced by saying "The prophet (HaNavi) said ..." Why not simply refer to these authors by their names?

  • 1
    Perhaps those who refer to the author as 'The Psalmist' don't hold that David authored those Psalms, rather they were composed by another. | Re Prophets - Without specific examples, I'm not sure what you're referring to, but some books (ex. Judges, Kings) don't have explicit authors. | Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/26949/…
    – Shmuel
    Jun 9, 2014 at 9:09
  • Why do I often use OP instead of their username?
    – Double AA
    Jun 9, 2014 at 16:10
  • Hi all, thanks for your feedback on the question. Can you please help me understand how to improve it per the downvotes? Be well, Lee
    – Lee
    Jun 10, 2014 at 19:46

1 Answer 1


The Gemara in Bava Batra 14b-15a mentions various authors of Tehillim besides for King David.

דוד כתב ספר תהלים ע"י עשרה זקנים ע"י אדם הראשון על ידי מלכי צדק ועל ידי אברהם וע"י משה ועל ידי הימן וע"י ידותון ועל ידי אסף ועל ידי שלשה בני קרח

[King] David wrote Sefer Tehillim "with help" from Elders:

  1. Adam HaRishon
  2. Malki Tzedek
  3. Avaraham Avinu
  4. Moshe Rabeinu
  5. Heiman
  6. Yeduthun
  7. Assaf

   8. - 10. Three sons of Korach

So it's not always correct to refer to Kind David as the author - sometimes it's more correct to say "The Psalmist".


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