Catholic Encyclopedia – Mathathias


The name of ten persons of the Bible, variant in both Hebrew and Greek of Old Testament and in Greek of New Testament; uniform in Vulgate. The meaning of the name is “gift of Jah”, or “of Jahweh” (cf. Theódoros). In the Hebrew, the first four of these persons are called Mattith Jah (mtthyh).

(1) MATHATHIAS (B. Thamathía, A. Maththathías), one of the sons of Nebo who married an alien wife (Ezra 10:41) and later repudiated her; he is called Mazitias in III Esd., ix, 35.

(2) MATHATHIAS (Septuagint Matthathías), one of the six who stood at the right of Esdras while he read the law to the people (Nehemiah 8:4).

(3) MATHATHIAS (Septuagint Matthathías), a Levite of Corite stock and eldest son of Sellum; he had charge of the frying of cakes for the temple-worship (1 Chronicles 9:31).

(4) MATHATHIAS (Septuagint Mattathías), a Levite, one of Asaph’s musicians before the ark (1 Chronicles 16:5).

(5) MATHATHIAS (1 Chronicles 15:18, 21; 25:3, 21; Hebrew Mththyhw; A. Mattathías in first three, Matthías in last; B. Immatathía in first, Mettathías in second, Mattathías in last two), a Levite of the sons of Idithun, one of the musicians who played and sung before the ark on its entrance into Jerusalem, later the leader of the fourteenth group of musicians of King David.

(6) MATHATHIAS (1 Maccabees 2 passim; 14:29; Septuagint Mattathías), the father of the five Machabees) who fought with the Seleucids for Jewish liberty.

(7) MATHATHIAS (1 Maccabees 11:70), the son of Absalom and a captain in the army of Jonathan the Machabee; together with Judas the son of Calphi, he alone stood by Jonathan’s side till the tide of battle turned in the plain of Asor.

(8) MATHATHIAS (1 Maccabees 16:14), a son of Simon the high priest; he and his father and brother Judas were murdered by Ptolemee, the son of Abobus, at Doch.

(9 and 10) MATHATHIAS (Matthathías), two ancestors of Jesus (Luke 3:25, 26).

MLA Citation

  • Walter Drum. “Mathathias”. Catholic Encyclopedia, 1911. CatholicSaints.Info. 17 November 2018. Web. 19 April 2021. <>