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&c. Which I mention, because it shews that the xxi. 39.), whose office it was to instruct the people.
nifics people, or inhabitants, who were taught by
compared, in all probability, is the same with that, law and judgement in the gates of their cities. Da.
towards the watcbetower, looking that way, is an
worship. We do not read any where in scripture
for oμμάτων υγρότης, the shining moisture of the word zophe here intimates ; which we translate looké.
civas rupe pār pain, and therefore to be one of the nymphs. resembling the top of Carmel. Which was another
celebrated, which were in the very entrance of the covered with great variety of flowers and trees.
speaks of Moab, in which country Carmel itself
in the next words, by comparing her riose to the tower other authors, who compare the head of a delicate
among the locks of hair that fall upon the cheeks. flowers, which are never wanting in the summer,
counted a considerable part of beauty; and an indi. the same manner Achilles Tatius, l. i. saith of his
lying in canals, to receive a deeper tincture, by orderly disposed like steps, whereby it may be
very being double-dyed. Vid. Menoch de Repub. Hebr. easily climbed. 1. i. c. X. 17. 6.
And the clusters to which the breasts are here comPut the LXX. make the last words a distinct sentence, pared, some think are notbing but the fruit of this.
as we do, in this manner : “ The king is tied or tree, viz. dates ; for it is not expressed in the Hebound in his walks.” That is, when he walks in brew what clusters these were, the word grape his palace-royal, and beholds her beauty, he stands being added by our translators of the Bible. still, and can ot take his eyes off from her, being Who supposed, as others do, that vines ran up the captivated with it, and tied as fast to her as the palm-tree in those countries, which agrees well with hair of her head is to the lace that binds it.
what follows in the next verse, where the “ clusThe former part of this verse is applied by the Chal ters of the vine” are mentioned, as a fit emblem of
dee Paraphrast to the “ king, (the head of the peo her breasts. Which were described before, ver. 4. ple), who shall be just like Elias, who was zealous but now mentioned again, to shew that they lookfor the Lord of hosts, and slew the false prophets ed not merely at the beauty, but the usefuluess of vpon Mount Carmel ;” and the latter part of it to that which is meant thereby. And Theodoret the “ poor, who shall be clothed by him in pur makes this pious observation upon it: That" though ple, as Daniel was in Babylon, and Mordecai in the church be described as sublime, and reaching up Shushan”
to heaven, (as his words are), yet she accommo[f] Ver. 6.] This verse may be either taken for a dates herself to the weakesc and lowest souls ;
commerdation of love, which had thus adorned stretching out the breasts of her doctrine to all that her, and raised her to this pitch of happiness; or need it. For the bunches of the palm-tree," saith of her who is called love in the abstract, to express he, “ hang down very low.” Which must be unmore vehemently how lovely she was, and what derstood, not of their hanging down near the earth, pleasure they took in beholding her beauty.
but below the bough, which are all at the top, and The first word, fair, may relate to the rare composition very high. For which reason Menochius (1. vii. de
of the whole body; and the next word, pleasant, or Repub. Hebr. c. viii. n. x,) thinks it not to be true, sweet, or comely, (as some translate it), to her grace which Aben-Ezra here notes, that the vines in ful motion, gesture, and sweet conversation. And Palestine were joined unto palm-trees, because the the sense, in short, is this : "O how desirable do palm-tree hath not boughs fit to support the branches
the pleasures which thou impartest make thee !" of the vine. Theodoret's note here is very pious, that we become [h] Ver. 8.] I take this verse to be still the voice of
thus beautiful and lovely, (though deformed before), the same persons, though in the singular number, by delighting in charity, and making doing good our (as appears from the mention of the beloved, ver. 9. highest pleasure.
which shows it is not he that speaks here, but some  Ver. 7.] This verse is a reflection upon the other person.) For one spake in the name of the
whole foregoing description, as appears by the first rest, (as Daniel did in the name of his other three word, zoth, this; as if they had suid, « To all this brethren, Dan. ii. 30. 36.) ; or the whole choir is thy stature is proportionable.” Which is compared considered but as one person, who desired to have to the palm-tree, because it shoots up straight as fellowship and communion with the church in her well as high, and therefore sets forth that part benefits. Of which having tasted, they say, "Now loveliness which consists in tallness. Which was also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine;" that always thought a great addition to beauty, and was is, now we shall enjoy those delicious pleasures beone reason why women wore ornaments upon
the fore mentioned, ver. 6. very top of their heads, as well as high shoes, to That which we translate nose, in the last clause of the make them appear the taller. The noblest palm verse, the Vulgar translate countenance, (or mouth ratrees of all other were in Judea, (especially about ther), agreeable enough to the Hebrew, and most Jericho), as Pliny writes, 1. xlii. c. 4. From agreeable to the rest of the words. For that which whence it was, that in future times it became an is smelt, is the breath coming out of the mouth, comemblem of that country, as we find in that medal of pared to the fragrancy of citrons, oranges, peaches, the emperor Titus, with a captive woman sitting or other sorts of tappuach, which is a name (I obunder a palm tree, and the inscription of Judæa serve above, ii. 5.) common to all such fruits, as well capta.
as those we peculiarly call apples; and indeed signifies Our learned countryman, Sir Thomas Brown, (in his any fruit that hath a fragrant odour breathing from it.
Miscellan. Tracts, p. 78.), hath ingeniously observed, And this may be thus mystically expounded : “ And
that they speak emphatically when they say they now shall we delight to hang upon the breasts of · will go up to take hold of the boughs" of this tree. the church, and the breath or spirits of the apos
For it must be ascended before one can come at the tles ; sweeter than grapes, or the smell of any other boughs, which it bears only at the top and upper fruit." parts. But the trunk or body of it is naturally [i] Ver. 9.] Which is farther explained in this verse. contrived, densis, gradatisque corticum pollicibus, ut Where the “roof of the mouth," i. e. the words orbibus, (as Pliny speaks,) with rings in the bark, which come from thence, is compared to the most
excellent wine, which was so choice, that it was preters, and only add this note of my own, That fit only to be presented to him, to whose love they the gospel was first preached in cities mostly, and owed all they had, (or so delicious, as our trans'a from thence spread itself in time into the neighbourtion hath it, that it went down glibly), and so gene ing villages; in which idolatry lasted so much longer rous, that it put spirits into those that were quite than in cities, that they gave the name of paganism spent with age, nay, raised those who were in a manner dead.
So this character of the best wine [m] Ver. 12.) This verse supposes those fields (ver. runs word for word in the Hebrew : "It goeth 11.) not to have been quite uncultivated, but that straight to my beloved, and causeth to speak the there were vineyards (that is, churches, in the mystical lips of old people, or of those that sleep,” that is, sense) planted in them. And her desire is, that he are dead. For this word jeschenim, our translators would accompany her in visiting them early, that is, thought may either signify olil men, or men asleep; very diligently, as the word signifies in many places. though exact grammarians will not allow it, but Thus, in Ecclus. xxxix. 5. it is said of a just man, make a great difference between jeschenim and jise that he will give his heart “to resort early to the chanim. The first of which, (which is the word Lord that made himn." Which is suitable to what here), they say, never signifies old men, but only the psalmist saith, Psal. v. 1. and Jeremiah, xxi. 12. sleepers.
xxv. 2. 3. Thus Theodoret here expounds it, “ It But if we wave this nice distinction, the words may behoveth us to make us all fitting diligence in visitalso be thus translated; " which makes
ing those that have already received the preaching ; speak with the lips of the ancient," i. e. sentences, whether they bring forth more than leaves, and esor most excellent sayings. I omit other glosses, pecially wherher any beginning of charity appear awhich may be found every where,
mong ihem." For so he expounds, “If the pome. [k] Ver. 10.] Here now the spouse, after long si. granates bud forth.” And this, saith he, is the
lence, puts an end to the encomium, modestly ac. greatest expression of love to him, which he makes knowledging there was nothing in her that could the meaning of the last words, « There will I deserve it, but only as she was his, who could not give thee my loves." For what care we bestow be praised enough.
upon them, he accounts as done to himself, accordThe words in effect we have met withal twice before, ing to his own words, “ In as much as ye have
ii. 16. vi. 3. For the meaning of the latter part, done it to one of the least of these, ye have done it “his desire is towards me," is no more than this, unto me.” (as · Mt Mede hath observed upon Dan. xi. 37.), The vines may signify the lesser sort of people, and " He is my husband:” Only there seems to me to the pomegranates the greater. be an allusion here to Psal. xlv. 11. "(The king, [n] Ver. 13.] The word dudaim is found only here, shall greatly desire thy beauty,” &c.) unto which So and in Gen. xxx. 14. Where we read, how Jalomon, as I take it, hath a respect aid along in this cob's wives contended for them, as a most precious, poein.
that is, a rare and delicious fruit. For none can [l} Ver. 11.] And now she turns herself from them imagine they strove about th.it now called by us to him, (beginning a new part of this song), and mandrakıs, which have a stinking smell, and very of. being augmented with those new companions who sensive; or about any ordinary flower, such as vis. had joined themselves unto her, she desires him (with lets or jasemin, (by which some expound this word), out whom nothing could be effected) to go along which they might have sent out their maids to gather
:ith her into the fields and villages, that is, to easily any where. Ludolphus, therefore, in his late those places which were not yet become his garden, Ethiopic History, (l. i. c. ix. n. 23.), hath happily of which they had been speaking hitherto. Or they conjectured, that is signifies the fruit which the Awere but preparing for it, by the culture he had bee rabians call maux or muza, (called by some the Ingun to bestow upon them; which from the follow dian Fig), which in the Abyssine country is as big ing verse seems to be the meaning.
as a cucumber, and of the same form and shape, Cepharim, villages, are opposed in scripture to citics, fifty of which grow upon one and the same stalk,
1 Sam. vi. 13. and signifies small towns and ham and are of a very sweet taste and smell; from lets, as we speak, 1 Chron. xxvii. 25. Neh. vi. 2. which cognation (as he calls it) of a great many upAnd the word nalinah, let us lodge, signifies to on the same stalk, he thinks it took the name of jutarry, and to make one's dwelling or abode in a duim. Which some derive from dod, either as it place, Psal. xci. I. and may be applied to the set. significs love, or a breast, with which they fancy iling of the gospel in those regions where it was but this fruit to have had some resemblance. newly planted. So Theodoret glosses : " Let us So the sense of this verse is, that they found more now take care of the meanest and most abject souls there than they expected ; or, that by her care the that have lain long neglected, which are tropically most excellent fruit was produced from people of called the fields and villages.” Most apply to the the best rank, (who may be understood by this most Gentile world, in this manner: “We have stayed rare sort of fruit), and that every where, so that long enough in the city of Jerusalem, and in Judea ; they needed not to be at the trouble to go far to let us go now to the heathen;" &c. . I
gather it. For at their very gates there were mcother applications, which may be found in inter galim, all precious spices, (mentioned before, is
13. v. 1.), and those both new and old, (a phrase not be despised.] And now, having finished this blessfor plenty and variety), which, as a faithful ed work, I hope to enjoy more intimate fellowship steward, she saith she had laid up for him, with with thee. I cannot bat wish, at least, to be so hapthe same care that we do the most precious trea- py as to have thy gracious presence always with me; sure. So the word zephanti (I have laid up) is and by familiar acquaintance and conversation, to be used, Psal. xvii. 13. cxix. 11.
so united with thee, that I may not be ashamed At the gates,] may also signify as much as just ready openly to own my love, but lock upon it as an to be gathered, or to be brought home.
honour to make a public profession of my relation to Some apply new and old to the knowledge of the Old thee. See Annot. [a]
and New Testament, by which idolatry was van Ver. 2. I would lead thee, and bring thee into my
BRIDEGROOM. up themselves to God sincerely, they readily de Ver. 4. I charge you, o daughters of Jerusalem, rote all they have to his uses, when he hath occasion that ye stir not up, nor awake my
love until he please. ] for it. And thus the first Christians at Jerusalem Who, with his wonted care, or rather with a more did, who brought all their goods unto his treasury, earnest concern than ever, repeats his charge to my and other nations afterwards made plentiful obla- companions, saying, I conjure you to take heed, lest tions, as need required, thereby fulfilling another you discompose or give the least disturbance to this prophecy, Psal. Ixxii. 10. 15. Unto which maga. love ; but let it enjoy its satisfaction to the height of dim may have respect, for such precious things as its desires. See Annot. [d] silver and gold, as well as the excellent fruits of
DAUGH1EKS OF JERUSALEM. trees, are called by this name; as may be
seen, Deut. Ver. 5. (Who is this that cometh up from the wilderxxxiii. 13. 14. 15. 16.
ness, leaning upon her beloved?) I raised thee up under
tbe apple-tree : there thy mother brought thee forth, CHAP. VIII.
there she brought thee forth that bare thee ] And who
can chuse but admire at the power of love! which THE ARGUMENT. The first four verses belong to hath advanced her to such a degree of greatness, that
the end of the foregoing chapter, wherein the it astonisheth those that behold it, and makes them
is cruel as the grave ; the coals thereof are coals, of fire,
which batb a most vehement flame.] Place me, thereSPOUSE.
fore, hereafter so near unto thy heart, that I may Ver. 1.
THAT ihou wert as my brother, that suck- never slip out of thy mind, but constantly receive
ed she breasts of my mother! when I fresh marks and tokens of thy love and favour: deny boil!! jin: the uthlalt; I svould kiss thee ; pea, I should not this suit, which proceeds from most fervent love,
which can no more be resisted than death, and is as myself a greater increase of happiness ; for though inexorable as the grave, especially when it flames to great persons let out their lands to others, as king Sothe degree of jealousy, and is afraid of losing what lomon doth the vineyard he hath in Baal-hamon unto ît loves; then it incessantly torments the soul; if it several tenants, from every one of which he receives be not satisfied, it wounds incurably; it burns and a vast revenge, besides the gain which they have to rages with such a violent and unextinguishable heat, ther:selves as a reward of their labour, (ver. 12.) See as I feel in my breast, now that it is mightily moved Annot.  by the Lord. See Annot. [f]
Ver. 12. My vineyard which is min, is before me : Ver. 7. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can thou, O Solomon, must have a thousand, and those that the floods drown i : If a man would give all the sub- keep the fruit thereof two hundred.] Yet I will not comstance of bis house for love, it would utterly be contemn, mit the vineyard which I am entrusted withal to the ed.] Though fire may be quenched, yet love cannot, care and management of other persons, but cultivate no, not by the greatest difficulties, nay, troubles and it myself with my utmost industry ; my own eye sufferings ; which, through they come pouring in con- shall be ever upon it, and I will let nothing be wanttinually, are so far from being able to suppress it, ing for its improvement; and therefore, if he receive that they cannot abate it, no, nor translate it to any so much profit, beside the benefit that accrues to mother from the person it loves; for as it is inestimable others, what fruit may I not expect from a far better
in itself, so it cannot be purchased by money, nor soil than his, and from far greater pains and providence will they who m it possesses part with it for the than I will use about it. See Annot. [m] greatest estate that they might enjoy without it, but
BRIDEGROOM. perfectly scorn and reject such proffers. See Annot. Ver. 13. Thou that dwellest in the gardens, the com[g]
panions bearken to thy voice: cause me to bear it.] Ver. 8. We have a little sister, and she bath no Which coming to the ears of her beloved, He said to breasts : what shall we do for our sister in the day when her, in the presence of all that waited on her, Thou she shall be spoken for?] | And as for those that want hast taken up a worthy resolution, nothing can be it, or in whom it is but just kindled, it makes us more acceptable to me than that thou fix thy habita. very solicitous what we shall do for them; particular- tion in thy vineyard ; nor canst thou possibly be better ly for one that is as dear to us as a sister, but of a employed, to thy own as well as my content, than a. small growth in this most desirable quality, and there- bout the gardens (vi. 2.) committed to thy charge; and fore not capable of that happiness which we enjoy : therefore ask what thou wilt of me, and I tell thee be. what shall we do for her, when it shall be said, The fore all thy companions, who are witnesses of what time is come that she should be disposed of in mar. I say, I will do it for thee. See Annct. [o] riage, and yet it shall be said withal, that she is not
SPOUSE. fit for it? See Annot. 
Ver. 14. Make baste, my beloved, and be thou like Ver. 9. If she be a wall, we will build upon her a to a roe, or to a young hart, upon the mountains of spices.] palace of silver : and if she be a door, we will inclose I have nothing to desire but this, that thou, who art her with boards of cedar.] We will not despair of my only beloved, wouldst come and accomplish all her, nor cast her off, but be both patient with her, these things; make all the speed that is possible to come and do our utmost to make her such as we desire ; and save us, and perfect thy loving-kindness to us, let her but be faithful and constant, and we will do for such speed as the swiftest creatures make to save her as we do for a wall that is low, which we pull themselves from danger ; let nothing hinder this, but not down, but build up higher, and adorn also with by thy love, which makes all things sweet and easy, fair and goodly turrets; or as we do with the door of overcome the greatest difficulties in thy way to us, a noble house, which if it be too weak or too mean, Şee Annot. [o] we spare no cost to mend it, but inclose in a case of cedar. See Annot. [i]
ANNOTATIONS. LITTLE SISTER. Ver. 10. I am a wall, and my breasts like tosers :  Ver. 1.] This verse, at first sight, looks like then was I in his eyes as one that found favour.]
a repetition of the same desire wherewith he beour labour, I foresee, will not be lost, for I hear her gan this book, that they might be so happy as to say, I am such a wall, and my breasts rise and grow see the Messiah appear, though it were but in his big like such turrets; I am no longer of a low and de infancy, which would transport them with joy, &c. spicable stature, nor unmeet for his love, but from this And thus the Chaldee Paraphrast interprets it, of time forth I shall be acceptable unto him, and find such the time when the Messiah shall be revealed to the favour with him, as to enjoy all the happiness which congregation of Israel. he imparts to those that are most dear unto him. See But if we consider what follows, it will be more rea. Annot. [k]
sonable to connect it with what went before, and Ver. 11. Solomon bad a vineyard at Baal-bamon ; to take it for a most ardent expression of love to he let out the vineyard unto keepers : every one for the the person before spoken of, with a desire to have fruit thereof was to bring a thousand pieces of silver.] more intimate familiarity with him, such as a sister Which I will endeavour to answer by my best dili hath with a brother, when he is a sucking child; gence in his service, and from thence siill promise whom, if she met in the street, she would not be