The Septuagint translators regarded the books of Samuel and of Kings as forming one continuous history, which they divided into four books, which they called "The Books of the Kingdom." The Vulgate version followed this division, but styled them "The Books of the Kings." These books of Samuel they accordingly called the "First" and "Second" Books of Kings, and not, as in the modern Protestant versions, the "First" and "Second" Books of Samuel.
The authors of the books of Samuel were probably Samuel, Gad[?], and Nathan[?]. Samuel is believed to have penned the first twenty-four chapters of the first book. Gad, the companion of David (1 Sam. 22:5), is believed to have continued the history thus commenced; and Nathan is believed to have completed it, probably arranging the whole in the form in which we now have it (1 Chronicles 29:29).
The second book, comprising a period of perhaps fifty years, contains a history of the reign of David
These books do not contain complete histories. Frequent gaps are met with in the record, because their object is to present a history of the kingdom in its gradual development, and not of the events of the reigns of the successive rulers.
It is noticeable that the section (2 Sam. 11:2-12: 29) containing an account of David's sin in the matter of Bathsheba[?] is omitted in the corresponding passage in 1 Chr. 20.