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the great works of Nitocris. See Herodotus, lib. i,
Like hurricanes from the south, for devastation It is coming from the desert, from the terrible country. Verse 2. _“ the treacherous dealer-spoileth.” This is a declaration of the crimes which brought the judgment upon Babylon. Or thus, in a different sense ; The treacherous dealer is repaid with treachery, the spoiler is
spoiled. The treachery here seems to denote only military stratagem, which was employed in the reduction of Babylon, but no other fraud.
But perhaps the public translation is to be preferred. Verse 4. _“the night of my pleasure"- 903 na
. It may be supposed that the prophet in his vision made one of the company at the royal banquet, and, as a partaker of that festivity, he calls that evening the evening of his pleasure. But the word 90s, as a noun, properly denotes either the evening or the morning breeze: hence the dawn of day; hence the season of the morning sleep; which, for the refreshment it affords, is a season desired and liked by every man. Thus the words may be
expounded without reference to Belshazzar's feast. “ The sweet season that I longed for of the morning sleep, he (i.e. God) hath changed into horror by the scene of misery represented to my imagination."
Verse 5. “ Prepare the table," &c. This 5th verse describes the revelling in Babylon the night that the town was taken. The prophet in his trance is present upon the spot; he has the whole scene before him, the feast, and the sudden irruption of the enemy.
The suddenness of the thing is wonder. fully expressed by the sudden turn of the discourse from the description of the royal banquet, to an alarm addressed by the prophet to the Babylonian chiefs. The idiom of the original may be imitated in the Latin language, but cannot be preserved in
• Ornare mensam ; ponere custodias; edere; potare; surgite principes; ungite scuta.” That these last words are an alarm to the Babylonians, not a call to the enemy, may be presumed, I think, from the mention of the shield only, the defensive weapon.
Verse 6, --" Go, set a watchman" It appears from the 10th verse that the prophet himself was the watchman; therefore I cannot think that this
passage is rightly rendered as a command to the prophet to set a watchman.
Verse 7. “ a chariot with a couple of horsemen;" literally, as I think, “ one riding a pair of postilions.” YUND. is so often joined with chariots in the Old Testament, that I am apt to think that the military cars of the east, with which the Jews were acquainted, in the earliest times were not of the form which was afterwards in use among the Greeks and the people of Asia Minor, (who certainly used cars driven by a charioteer seated on a box, or in the car). I imagine that these more antient cars were driven by men riding on the beasts that drew them; and that DVI Dy is a phrase for such a car.* The passage may be rendered more literally in Latin than in English. Videt [quendam] vectum binis equitibus; vectum asino, vectum camelo. The last clause affirms that the car was drawn by a pair of different beasts.t
* Whether such cars were ever actually in use or no, which, upon further consideration, seems very improbable, such evidently was the car of the prophetic vision.
+ Some commentators have imagined that the D'vi opy alludes only to the order in which Cyrus's cavalry advanced to
Verse 8. -" a lion." ” “Leo, quod brevissimas habet palpebras, unde etiam dormiens vigilare videtur, symbolum est vigilantis excubitoris; soletque adpingi valvis templorum et palatiorum, quasi vigil et custos loci," inquit Horus Apollo. Tirinus apud Poole. A comma should certainly be placed after the first
, makes a distinct clause, in which the verb substantive in the first person is understood. The passage, I think, might receive emendation by a transposition of two words, which would stand better in the next clause than in this. The passage
at present stands thus;
, with the preceding words after ,אנוכי
ויקרא אריה על מצפה ארני אנכי עמד תמיר יומם ועל משמרתי אנכי נצב כל הלילות :
: By transposition I would arrange it thus;
ויקרא אריה אדוני אנכי על מצפה עמר, תמיד יומם יעל משמרתי אנכי נצב כל הלילות :
march up the dry bed of the river. See Cyropæd. p. 524, Hutchinson. But the 9th verse evidently describes one man somehow or other drawn by the pair.
Verse 9. “ And behold,” &c. In the preceding verse the prophet recited what the watchman said
; now he proceeds in the description of what the watchman sees. In the middle of the verse“ he answered,” he recites again what the watchman says in consequence of what he had further seen: all along speaking of the watchman as a third
perIn the 10th verse he discovers that he is himself the watchman.
Verse 10. “O my thrashing." O nation of the Jews, thou object (not of my discipline, for the prophet certainly speaks in his own person), but of my unremitted pains and solicitude; the object upon which my labour in the prophetic ministry is bestowed.
The translation of the whole is thus :
THE BURTHEN OF THE MARSH.
1 Like the sweeping-whirlwinds in the south, For devastation from the desert it cometh, from
the dreaded land!
2 A grievous vision is set before me!
That perfidious dealeth perfidiously, and that spoiler spoileth :