The Bible twice relates the story of David's transfer of the ark to Jerusalem, once in 2 Samuel 6 and then, in greatly expanded form, in 1 Chronicles 13–16. This article studies Josephus' retelling of the episode in Ant. 7.78–89 in relation to the biblical sources (as represented by MT, Codex Vaticanus and the Lucianic/Antiochene MSS of the LXX, as well as the Targums). Among its findings: Josephus drew on the presentations of both Samuel and Chronicles. There are several clear instances of his dependence on a LXX-like text of Samuel (and Chronicles), but no equally clear-cut indications of his utilization of a MT-like text. Contentually, Josephus' version highlights the role of the priests vis-à-vis that of the Levites in the ark's transfer. David's role is likewise consistently accentuated, even while source suggestions of his arrogation of priestly prerogatives are eliminated. Finally, building on the LXX reading in 2 Sam 6:20, Josephus softens the vehemence of Michal's exchange with her husband, just as he also attempts to harmonize conflicting biblical data concerning her (lack of) progeny.

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