Imágenes de páginas
PDF

276 § 223. The Anointing of Kings.

I. The king, surrounded with soldiers, was conducted into some publick place, (latterly into the temple,) and was there anointed by the high priest with the sacred oil. The circumstance, that there is no mention made of anointings on these occasions in the history of the kingdom of Israel, as separate from that of Judah, is to be accounted for from the fact, that the rulers of that kingdom had not the opportunity of obtaining possession of the sort of oil, denominated sacred; as no other was thought to answer the purpose, 1 Kgs. 1: 32–34. 2 Kgs. 11: 12–20. 2 Chron. 23: 1–21. We see in this ceremony the ground of the epithet no or anointed, which is applied to kings, and a reason also, (when it is takeninto consideration, that kings were virtually the vicegerents of Jehovah, and were appointed by his authority,) why they were denominated the anointed of, i.e. by the Lord, Hyr tro, 1 Sam. 24: 6, 10. 26: 9, 11, 16, 23. 2 Sam. 23: 1. Ps. 2: 2.89: 38. Habak. 3: 13, etc. Whether the king was likewise girded with a sword at the time of his succession to the throne, is a point which cannot be determined at any rate, as some have imagined, from the forty fifth Psalm. II. It appears from 2 Sam. 1: 10, Ezek. 21:26, and Psalm 45: 6, that a sceptre was presented to the monarch at his inauguration, and that a diadem was placed upon his head. III. The Covenant, nons, which defined and fixed the principles, according to which the government was to be conducted, room belon, and likewise the Laws of Moses were presented to him, and he accordingly took an oath, that he would rule according to the principles of that Covenant, and of the Mosaic Law, 1 Sam. 10; 25. 2 Sam. 5: 3. 1 Chron. 11: 3.2 Kgs. 11: 12. 2 Chron. 23: 11, comp. Deut. 17: 18. The principal men of the kingdom, princes, elders, &c. promised obedience on their part, and as a pledge and a proof of their determination to do what they had promised, they kissed, as it seems, either the feet or the knees of the person inaugurated, Ps. 2: 12. IV. After the ceremonies were completed, and the individual concerned was legally constituted the ruler of the kingdom, he was conducted into the city with great pomp, amid the acclamations and the applauses of the people, and the cries of “Long live the King !” or "no The joy, which was the natural result of such an occasion, expressed itself likewise in songs, and on in

[ocr errors]

§ 224. Roy AL Robe, DIADEM, AND crowN. 277

struments of musick. Sacrifices, which, in the later ages of the nation, were converted into feasts, were offered up, and were intended probably as a confirmation of the oath, which had been taken, 1 Kgs. 1: 1, 11, 19, 24, 34, 39, 40. 2 Kgs. 11: 12, 19. 2 Chr. 23: 11, comp, Matt. 21: 1–11. John 12:3. There are allusions in many passages of Scripture to the publick entrance into cities, which took place at the time of coronation, and to the rejoicings and acclamations on that occasion, Ps. 47: 2–9. 83:1, 2.97: 1. 99: 1. W. Finally, the king is seated upon the throne, and, as the concluding ceremony at his accession, receives the congratulations, which are then customarily presented, 1 Kgs. 1:35, 48, comp. 2 Kgs. 9:13. 11:19. It is almost unnecessary to remark, that, at the accession of king Saul to the monarchy, when there was neither diadem, throne, nor sceptre, many of these ceremonies were not observed. The most of them also were omitted in the case of conquest, when the conqueror himself, without consulting the people or their principal men, designated the king for the nation, whom he had subdued, merely gave him another name in token of his new dignity, exacted the oath of fidelity, and signalized the event by a feast, 2. Kgs. 23: 34. 24; 17. 2 Chron. 36: 4.

§ 224. Roy Al Robe, DIADEM, AND CrowN.

The robe, which was worn by kings, as might be expected from their elevated rank, was costly and gorgeous; and the retinue, which attended them, was both large in point of number, and splendid in respect to appearance, Ezek. 28:13–20, 1 Kgs. 4 ch. The materials, of which their robe was made, was fine, white, linen or cotton; the usual colour was purple, togqvgo, kat 8wooog. jobs. Yaz, Luke 16, 18. Acts 18: 12, 16. The kings of Media and Persia appear to have used silk, Est. 6: 8, 10, 11. 8: 15.

Among the appropriate ornaments of the king's person, there was none so rich and valuable anciently, and there is none so costly and splendid at the present day in Asia, as the royal diadem; which is irradiated with pearls and gems. This article of their dress, also the chain for the neck and the bracelets for the arms, were worn by them constantly. In Persia a diadem was worn not 278 § 225. The Thaone.

only by the king himself, but likewise, with a little different shape in its construction, by his relations, and others, to whom special favours had been conceded, Est. 8: 15.

As far as respects the form of the diadem, (in Hebrew denominated no.) we have only to observe, that it was a fillet, two inches broad, bound round the head, so as to pass the forehead and temples, and tied behind. It had its origin from the fillet or ribband, which, in the most ancient times, was tied round the hair for the purpose of confining it, and which was used, subsequently, to secure the head-dress upon the head.

The colour of the diadem seems to have varied in different countries. That of the diadem of the Persian kings, (according to Curtius VI. 11,) was purple mingled with white, Ps, 89: 39. 2 Sam. 1: 10. 2 Kgs. 11: 12, 2 Chron. 23: 11.

Crowns, ninty, Hyoy, were likewise in use, 2 Sam. 12:30. Zech. 6: 11, 14. Ps. 23: 3. These words are also used, in some instances, to denote a diadem, and likewise an ornamental headdress for the ladies. It may be, moreover, that they are used to signify a sort of mitre, which ascends very high and is made of metal; of which we have given an engraved representation in the large German Edition of this Work, Part I. Vol. II. tab. IX. No. 4 and 8. It is possible, that the forms of those crowns, which were worn by kings at the earliest period, resembled that of the mitre in the engraving referred to, but it is a point, which is by no means determined.

[ocr errors]

THE THRONE was a seat with a back and arms, and of so great height, as to render a footstool biori, necessary, Gen. 41 : 40. Ps. 1.10: 1. Curtius W. 7.

The throne of Solomon, which consisted wholly of gold ornamented with ivory, was made in this manner, excepting that the back was a little curved, and contiguous to each arm or side, was placed the figure of a lion, (the symbol of a king,) 1. Kgs. 10:18—20. 2 Chron. 9; 17. This throne was placed on a flooring, elevated six steps, on each of which steps, and, on either side, was the figure of a lion, making twelve of them in the whole.

It was customary for the high priest, previous to the time of

§ 226. The sceptre. 279

the monarchy, if not to sit upon a throne properly so called, at least, to take a position on an elevated seat, 1 Sam. 1:9. 4: 18. Both the “throne” itself, and likewise “sitting upon the throne,” are expressions used tropically, to denote power, and government, 2 Sam. 3:10. Ps. 9:7. 89:44. Is. 47: 1, etc. That the throne of the Hebrew kings is also called the “throne of Jehovah,” originated from the fact, that those kings were in reality his vicegerents, and exercised in respect to God a vicarious authority, 2 Chron.9:8. o In some passages, a throne is assigned to God, not only as the king of the Hebrews, but also as the ruler of the universe, Job 23: 3. Exod. 17:16. Is. 6: 1. 1 Kgs. 22: 19. It is represented, as a chariot of thunders, drawn by cherubin, booz, Ezek. 1:3, et seq. 2 Kgs. 19:15. 1 Chron. 13. 6. Ps. 18; 11. Hence the cheru. bim, placed over the ark of the Covenant, represented the throne of God, as the ark itself was his footstool, Ps. 99: 5. 132: 7. 1 Chron. 28: 2. These images are magnified and rendered more intense, when it is said of God, “that heaven is his throne and earth his footstool,” Is. 66:1. Matt. 5:34.

§ 226. The Sceptre.

The sceptre of king Saul was a spear, nor, 1 Sam. 18; 10. 22. 6. This agrees with what Justin, (Lib. 43. c. 3,) relates, viz. that in ancient times kings bore a spear, instead of a sceptre. But generally, as appears from the Iliad itself, the sceptre, toog, (comp. Ezek. 19:11,) was a wooden rod or staff, which was not much short, in point of length, of the ordinary height of the human form, and was surmounted with an ornamental ball on the upper extremity, as may still be seen in the ruins of Persepolis. This sceptre was either overlaid with gold, or, according to the representation of Homer, was adorned with golden studs and rings. If we endeavour to seek for the origin of this ensign of royal authority, we shall find the first suggestion of it either in the pastoral staff, that was borne by shepherds, or in those staves, which, at the earliest period, were carried by persons in high rank, merely for show and ornament, Gen. 38: 18. Num. 17: 7. Ps. 23:4. A sceptre is used tropically for the royal dignity and authority, 280 § 227. The Royal TABLE.

and a just sceptre for just government, Gen. 49: 10, Num. 24; 7. Amos 1:5,8. Jer, 48: 17. Ps. 45:6.

A

§ 227. The Royal Table.

The table of the Hebrew kings, and every thing connected with it, exhibited the same marks of exorbitant luxury, as may be witnessed at this day under like circumstances in Asia. Vast numbers of persons, who acted, in some capacity or other, as the serwants or the officers of the king, were reckoned among those, who drew their sustenance from the palace; and hence it very naturally happened, that immense quantities of provisions were consumed, 1 Kgs. 4: 22, 23. In the earlier periods of the Hebrew monarchy, the table of the kings was set with numerous articles of gold, especially on occasion of feasts, of which there was no deficiency, 1 Kgs. 10: 21. To impart an eclat and a joy to feasts, that were prepared by the king, there were present not only musicians, but also ladies, whose business it was to dance; although this latter class of personages do not appear to be spoken of among “the singing men, and the singing women,” that are mentioned in second Samuel, (19:35.) The splendour of preparation, which has been alJuded to, and the classes of persons, who were invited in order to increase the hilarity of the occasion, we must suppose, found a place, (more or less according to circumstances,) in all the royal festivals, of which we have an account in the Bible, Gen. 40: 20. Dan. 5: 1. Matt. 22:1, et seq. Mark 6: 21. In Persia the queen herself seems to have made one of the party at such times, and at Babylon other ladies of distinction; but they were in the habit of retiring, as soon as the men gave indications, that they began to feel the effects of the wine, Dan. 5: 2. Est. 1: 9. 5:4, 8, 7:1, Curtius V. 5. Herodot. I. 199. But among the Hebrews, there was a class of royal festivals of a peculiar kind; such as were not known in other nations. As God was their king, they were in the habit, at the season of the great national festivals, of preparing a feast, either at the Tabernacle or in Jerusalem, of the thank-offering sacrifices, and in this way they participated in a season of joy, of which God himself, who was the ruler of the nation, might be considered, as the immediate author.

« AnteriorContinuar »