The court was hastily removed across the Jordan to Mahanaim, where Saul's son Ishbaal (Ish-bosheth), thanks to his general Abner, recovered some of the lost prestige.
In circumstances which are not detailed, the kingdom seems to have regained its strength, and Ishbaal is credited with a reign of two years over Israel and Gilead (2 Sam.
His son Elah had reigned only two years (like Ishbaal and Nadab) when he was slain in the midst of a drunken carousal by his captain Zimri.
(See Abner and Saar,.) Abner had taken Saul's son Ishbaal and his authority was gradually consolidated in the north..
Ishbaal lost hope, and after he had been foully assassinated by two of his own followers, all Israel sought David as king.
There were men of stronger build than the weak Ishbaal and the crippled son of Jonathan, the survivors of Saul's house, and it is only to be expected that David's first care must have been to cement the union of the north and south.
Seizing the only surviving son, Ishbaal, he set him up as king over Israel at Mahanaim, east of the Jordan.
At length Ishbaal lost the main prop of his tottering cause by remonstrating with Abner for marrying Rizpah, one of Saul's concubines, an alliance which, according to Oriental notions, implied pretensions to the throne (cp. 2 Sam.