The lintel of Shebna-yahu's tomb in the British Museum

Shebna (Hebrew: שֶׁבְנָא, Modern Shevna, Tiberian Šeḇnā; "tender youth") was "treasurer over the house" (meaning comptroller or governor of the palace) in the reign of king Hezekiah of Judah, according to the Old Testament.

Because of his pride he was ejected from his office, and replaced by Eliakim the son of Hilkiah as recorded in Book of Isaiah (Isaiah 22:15-25). Shebna also appears to have been the leader of the party who favored an alliance with Egypt against Assyria.

Shebna may or may not have been "Shebna the scribe", who was sent by the king to confer with the Assyrian ambassador recorded in the Books of Kings (2 Kings 18:18,26,37; 2 Kings 19:2; parallel accounts in Isaiah 36:3,11,22; 37:2).

Tomb and inscription

Main article: Shebna Inscription
A royal steward's rock-cut tomb discovered in Siloam is believed to be his,[1] although only the last three letters of the name remain legible on the lintel from the tomb that is now kept in the British Museum.[2]

The assumption is that Shebna's name may have also been pronounced 'Shevanyahu', which fits the inscription perfectly.[3]

See also


  1. Jewish Magazine - Jerusalem Tombs
  2. British Museum Collection
  3. "Ancient Jerusalem's Funerary Customs and Tombs: Part Two, L. Y. Rahmani, The Biblical Archaeologist, Vol. 44, No. 4 (Autumn, 1981), pp. 229-235.

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Easton, Matthew George (1897). "article name needed". Easton's Bible Dictionary (New and revised ed.). T. Nelson and Sons. 

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