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THE SECOND BOOK OF THE KINGS.
1 The Amalekite, who brought tidings of the overthrow, and accused himself of Saul's death, is slain. 17 David lamenteth Saul and Jonathan with a song.
6 And the young man that told him said, As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned his upon spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him.
7 And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called unto me. And I answered, "Here am I.
8 And he said unto me, Who art thou? And I answered him, I am an Amalekite. 9 He said unto me again, Stand, I pray thee, upon me, and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me.
10 So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen: and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them hither unto my lord.
11 Then David took hold on his clothes, and rent them; and likewise all the men that were with him:
12 And they mourned, and wept,_ and fasted until even, for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of the LORD, and for the house of Israel; because they were fallen by the sword.
13 And David said unto the young man that told him, Whence art thou? And he answered, I am the son of a stranger, an Amalekite.
14 And David said unto him, "How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the LORD's anointed?
15 And David called one of the young men, and said, Go near, and fall upon him. And he smote him that he died.
16 And David said unto him, Thy blood be upon thy head; for thy mouth hath testi
3 Heb. Behold me. Or, my coat of mail, or, my embroidered coat hindereth me, that my, ke. Chap. 3. 31, and 13. 31. 6 Psal. 105. 15.
fied against thee, saying, I have slain the LORD'S anointed.
17 And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his
18 (Also he bade them teach the children of Judah the use of the bow: behold, it is written in the book of Jasher.)
19 The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen!
20 Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph.
fat of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty.
23 Saul and Jonathan were lovely and 10pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.
21 Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain, upon you, nor fields of offerings: for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.
22 From the blood of the slain, from the
7 Josh. 10. 13. 8 Or, o the upright.
24 Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel.
25 How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! O Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places.
26 I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.
27 How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perished!
9 Micah 1. 10.
10 Or, sweet.
DAVID AND THE AMALEKITE.-ANDREA DEL SARTO.
Verse 10." The crown that was upon his head."-This crown could, evidently, not have been a crown of state, but suc as was used in war, connected with the helmet. Reserving therefore some notice of ancient crowns for another occa sion, we have only to say a few words on crowned helmets, in addition to what has already been stated in the note 1 Sam. xvii., where the illustrative wood-cut exhibits several examples of such helmets. We now offer other specimens for distinct illustration. Those of the first two cuts are from the sculptures of ancient Persia, and are very complet
FROM A PERSIAN SCULPTURE ON THE FACE OF THE ROCK AT TACKT-I-BOSTAN.
of their kind. The most ancient crowns were merely fillets or metallic bands, fastened round the head; and in war such diadems were fixed to the lower part of the helmet to denote the regal dignity of the wearer. Whatever form the crown or head-dress of state received in later times, its adaptation to the helmet was on a similar principle. It was a circlet, more or less enriched, and in various figures, surrounding the different kinds of helmet. It seems, however. that when the proper crown or cap of state was high, its height was often diminished, in this adaptation, for the sake of convenience. In one of the figures of the first cut we see the fillet or band, surrounding a scull-cap. In the other, the diadem which surrounds and strengthens the war-cap, is such an adaptation of the cylindrical cap of state as we mentioned in the Note on Helmets. In this, the fluted cylinder is shortened, and widened at the top. It has a plain surface, is from the top cut to half its depth, and approaches to the ancient Oriental rayed form of the crown, which we repeated, with some variation, in the right-hand figure of the second cut. This last, under sundry modifications, seems to be the most common form of the crowned helmets which the Persian sculptures exhibit. In some instances the circlet is more acutely rayed than in those which we have given. It is evident that in most of the instances in which the metallic diadem rises above the top of the head, that alone, even without the enclosed or surrounded cap #helmet, forms a very good defence for the head. Instances are therefore not wanting in which, so far as we can discover, the diadem alone defends the head, and is so constructed as to afford it very sufficient protection. These ve might call "crown helmets" as distinguished from "crowned helmets." Of the former, the figures f, h, i, in the cut 1 Sam. xvii. seem to be examples. Of which kind was the crown of Saul, it is difficult to determine, since both a down helmet, and a crowned helmet may be called "crowns" with nearly equal propriety. Among other illustratons, the fig. g in the cut referred to, representing a highly enriched helmet or war-cap may be pointed out as having
a good claim to the title of a crown. It was undoubtedly a regal distinction, and several examples of it occur in the sculptures and coins of ancient Persia. The subjoined cut is a portrait of Aga Mohammed Khan, the last but one of the Persian kings. Though a modern subject, it has been introduced under the impression that the form of the very conspi cuous cap furnishes a complete and striking illustration of some of the ancient Oriental combinations of the crown with the helmet.
"The bracelet that was on his arm."-We believe that Harmer was the first to suggest that Saul's bracelet, which the Amalekite brought with the crown to David, was one of the badges of royalty. In proof that the bracelet was used in the East as a badge of power, he cites a passage from D'Herbelot, stating that when the Khalif Cayem Bemrillah granted the investiture to an eastern prince of certain dominions, which his predecessors had possessed, and among the rest of the city of Bagdad itself, the ceremony of investiture was performed by the khalif's sending him, together with the necessary firman, a crown, a chain, and bracelets. This is a very good illustration; and the conjecture which Harmer seems to found upon it becomes certainty, when we refer to past and existing usage of Persia. In some of the accounts (for almost every account differs in some particulars) of the closing scene in the life of the unhappy Yezdijird, in whose reign the Arabians conquered Persia, it is related that when he sought refuge in a mill from his pursuers, he offered the miller, as a bribe, his girdle, his bracelets, and his ring; and that his bracelets formed a royal distinction is established by the present Persian custom, which only allows them to be worn by the king and his sons. We have shown that the "bracelet upon the arm" includes both bracelets, usually so called, and armlets. That of Saul was probably an armlet, like the distinction of Persian royalty, which is a jewelled band worn above the elbow. Those which the king wears in his dress of state make a most glorious appearance, and are valued at nearly a million of our money. The principal stone in each of these bazúbends, as they are called, is of immense value. That in the left armlet, called the deria-e-noor, or "sea of light," is considered the diamond of the finest lustre in the world, and weighs 186 carats: that in the right armlet is called the táj-e-mah, or "crown of the moon," and is a most splendid diamond, weighing 146 carats. These facts may assist us in forming some idea of the conspicuous character of the armlet or bracelet in the regalia of the ancient Oriental kings. But the custom was not exclusively Oriental; for, according to Turner, bands of gold, worn around the neck, arms, and knees, were emblems of supreme authority among the ancient British kings.
18. "He bade them teach the children of Judah the use of the bow."-The words, "the use of," not being in the original, some commentators think that "the Bow" was the title of the ensuing elegy, and that this is what was commanded to be taught. This is possible: but the common reading seems more than equally so, as the experience of the efficacy
of this weapon, in the recent engagement with the Philistines (1 Sam. xxxi. 3), was well calculated to direct David's attention to the subject, and induce him to desire that more attention should be paid to the bow for warlike purposes. David's own stay among the Philistines was also calculated to operate for the same result. The bow was indeed well known to the Hebrews long before this time; but it does not appear that it was used to any considerable extent as a military weapon. We read of no body of archers in the Hebrew army till after David's time; but very large bodies of archers are subsequently mentioned. They appear to have been chiefly Benjamites, who seem, throughout their history, to have been remarkable for their partiality to missile weapons. The archers of Ephraim are, however, mentioned once. (Compare 1 Chron. viii. 40; 2 Chron. xiv. 8 and xvii. 7; Ps. lxxviii. 9.) The frequent reference to archery in the Psalms Fould alone suffice to show the interest which David took in the subject. The Bible itself bears witness to the extreme antiquity of the bow. Ishmael, when banished from his father's tents, "dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer and his nephew, Esau, employed the bow in his hunting. (Gen. xxi. 20 and xxvii. 3.) Very probably the invention of the bow originated in the desire to obtain a weapon for the distant attack of animals, whose strength or swiftness rendered a close assault difficult or dangerous. Such a weapon would, of course, soon come to be employed against man; and to this we find allusions towards the end of Genesis, where, speaking of Joseph, the dying Israel Sys: The archers have sorely grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him. But his (own) bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong" (chap. xlix. 23, 24). Here the strength of the arms is properly alluded to, a strong arm being necessary to bend a strong bow. The aged patriarch had, on a former occasion, told Joseph: "Behold I have given thee one portion above thy brethren, which I took out of the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow," (chap. xlviii. 22.)
The most ancient offensive or defensive arms seem also to be those which are the most universal; because that simplicity of construction which leads to early invention, leads also to independent discovery among different and unconnected nations. This applies to the bow, which we find to have been very extensively diffused. It exists among nations the most brutal, or ignorant, or savage, and even in the islands which lie most remote from the continent; although, indeed, there have been some nations among whom no trace of its existence can be discovered.
The ancient bows were for the most part of wood, but we sometimes read of horn being employed. Those of wood were tipped with horn, and those of horn with metal-often gold or silver. Indeed the bow was sometimes wholly of metal, as steel or brass; and such are mentioned in Scripture (Job xx. 24; Ps. xviii. 34). These of course were, from their stiffness, bent with great difficulty; whence David, in the last-cited text, properly mentions it as a proof of the extraordinary strength with which the Lord had endowed him, that a bow of steel was broken by his arms. Thus, on account of the force required to bend some ancient bows, whether of wood, metal, or horn, it was often proposed as a trial of strength to bend some particular bow; and we find ancient heroes glorying in the possession and use of a bow which no one but themselves could bend. Such was the famous bow of Ulysses. It had remained among his treasures during the twenty years of his absence from Ithaca. In the end, it was agreed that the hand of his supposed widow should be given to him who, out of the numerous suitors, should be abie to bend this bow, and to send the arrow through twelve rings. The bow was of horn, and the string had remained unhitched at one end, as usual when the weapon was not in use. Not one of the suitors was able even so far to bend the bow as to hitch on the string at the loosened end, although they tried to relax the rigidity of the bow by chafing it with suet before the fire. At last Ulysses himself, who was present in the disguise of a beggar, takes it, and the description of the manner in which he deals with it is highly interesting.
"He now, with busy look and curious touch,