Song of Solomon 1:15
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful! Your eyes are doves.

New Living Translation
How beautiful you are, my darling, how beautiful! Your eyes are like doves.

English Standard Version
Behold, you are beautiful, my love; behold, you are beautiful; your eyes are doves.

New American Standard Bible
"How beautiful you are, my darling, How beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves."

King James Bible
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
How beautiful you are, my darling. How very beautiful! Your eyes are doves. W

International Standard Version
Look at you! You are beautiful, my darling. Look at you! You are so beautiful. Your eyes are doves.

NET Bible
Oh, how beautiful you are, my beloved! Oh, how beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves!

New Heart English Bible
Look, you are beautiful, my love. Look, you are beautiful. Your eyes are doves.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Look at you! You are beautiful, my true love! Look at you! You are so beautiful! Your eyes are like doves!

JPS Tanakh 1917
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; Thine eyes are as doves.

New American Standard 1977
“<,>How beautiful you are, my darling,
            How beautiful you are!
            Your eyes are like doves.”

Jubilee Bible 2000
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes.

King James 2000 Bible
Behold, you are fair, my love; behold, you are fair; you have doves' eyes.

American King James Version
Behold, you are fair, my love; behold, you are fair; you have doves' eyes.

American Standard Version
Behold, thou art fair, my love; Behold thou art fair; Thine eyes are as doves.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Behold thou art fair, O my love, behold thou art fair, thy eyes are as those of doves.

Darby Bible Translation
Behold, thou art fair, my love; Behold, thou art fair: thine eyes are doves.

English Revised Version
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thine eyes are as doves.

Webster's Bible Translation
Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes.

World English Bible
Behold, you are beautiful, my love. Behold, you are beautiful. Your eyes are doves. Beloved

Young's Literal Translation
Lo, thou art fair, my friend, Lo, thou art fair, thine eyes are doves!
Study Bible
Solomon
14"My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms In the vineyards of Engedi." 15"How beautiful you are, my darling, How beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves." 16"How handsome you are, my beloved, And so pleasant! Indeed, our couch is luxuriant!…
Cross References
Song of Solomon 1:9
"To me, my darling, you are like My mare among the chariots of Pharaoh.

Song of Solomon 1:16
"How handsome you are, my beloved, And so pleasant! Indeed, our couch is luxuriant!

Song of Solomon 2:10
"My beloved responded and said to me, 'Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along.

Song of Solomon 2:13
The fig tree has ripened its figs, And the vines in blossom have given forth their fragrance. Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along!'"

Song of Solomon 4:1
"How beautiful you are, my darling, How beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves behind your veil; Your hair is like a flock of goats That have descended from Mount Gilead.

Song of Solomon 4:7
"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, And there is no blemish in you.

Song of Solomon 5:12
"His eyes are like doves Beside streams of water, Bathed in milk, And reposed in their setting.

Song of Solomon 6:4
"You are as beautiful as Tirzah, my darling, As lovely as Jerusalem, As awesome as an army with banners.

Song of Solomon 6:10
'Who is this that grows like the dawn, As beautiful as the full moon, As pure as the sun, As awesome as an army with banners?'

Song of Solomon 7:6
"How beautiful and how delightful you are, My love, with all your charms!
Treasury of Scripture

Behold, you are fair, my love; behold, you are fair; you have doves' eyes.

thou art fair

Songs 1:8 If you know not, O you fairest among women, go your way forth by …

Songs 4:1,7,10 Behold, you are fair, my love; behold, you are fair; you have doves' …

Songs 5:12 His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed …

Songs 7:6 How fair and how pleasant are you, O love, for delights!

my love

Malachi 2:14 Yet you say, Why? Because the LORD has been witness between you and …

thou hast

Songs 4:1 Behold, you are fair, my love; behold, you are fair; you have doves' …

Songs 5:12 His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed …

2 Corinthians 11:2,3 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused …

Ephesians 1:17,18 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory…

(15) Behold, thou art fair.--The song is now transferred to a male speaker--the advocates for the dramatic theory cannot agree whether Solomon or the shepherd; and no wonder, since the poem gives no indication.

My love.--Marg., companion, LXX. ???????, in Heb. rayati, is used for the female, ddi being her usual term for her lover. Beyond this the terms of endearment used cannot safely be pressed for any theory.

Thou hast doves' eyes.--Literally, thine eyes are doves'. The same image is repeated (Song of Solomon 4:1), and adopted in return by the heroine (Song of Solomon 5:12). The point of the comparison is either quickness of glance or generally tenderness and grace. The dove, a favourite with all poets as an emblem of love, is especially dear to this bard. Out of about fifty mentions of the bird in Scripture, seven occur in the short compass of this book. For general account of the dove in Palestine, see Psalm 55:6, and for particular allusions Notes below to Song of Solomon 2:11-12; Song of Solomon 2:14. (Comp. Shakespeare's Coriolanus, v. 3:--

"Or those doves' eyes

That can make gods forsworn."

Tennyson's Maud:--

"Do I hear her sing as of old,

My bird with the shining head,

My own dove, with her tender eye?")

Verse 15. - Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thine eyes are as doves; literally, thine eyes are doves. The king receives the worship of his bride and delights in her. She is very sweet and fair to him. The dove is a natural symbol of love; hence it was attached by the classical nations to the garden of love, together with the myrtle, rose, and apple, all of which we find introduced in this Hebrew poem. Hence the Arabic name for a dove, Jemima, as we see in the Book of Job, was the name of a woman (cf. Columbina). The language of the king is that of ecstasy; hence the interjection and repetition. The enraptured monarch gazes into the eyes of his beloved bride, and sees there only purity, constancy, and affection. In Song of Solomon 7:4 the eyes are compared to fish ponds, no doubt for their clear, liquid depth and serenity. Some have thought that the allusion is to the very lovely eyes of the doves; but there is no need of the limitation. Behold, thou art fair, my love,.... These are the words of Christ, commending the beauty and comeliness of the church, expressing his great affection for her, and his high esteem of her; of her fairness and beauty; see Gill on Sol 1:5; see Gill on Sol 1:8; of the title of Christ's love, as given her by him; see Gill on Sol 1:9; a "behold" is prefixed to this account her, as a note of attention, to consider her complete comeliness in Christ, and not pore on her own blackness; and as a note of admiration, that she who was so black and uncomely in herself should be so fair and beautiful in his eyes, through his blood, righteousness, and grace; and as a note of asseveration, assuring her of the truth of it, which she might be apt to call in question; and, to prevent which, it is also repeated,

behold, thou art fair; exceeding fair, really so, both inwardly and outwardly; both with respect to justification and sanctification;

thou hast doves' eyes; or "eyes like doves" (d); these are taken notice because much beauty lies in the eyes, either in the size or colour of them (e); similes taken from doves are frequently used in this sacred poem, both with respect to the bride and bridegroom; see Sol 2:14; and it may easily be observed, that this creature furnishes much matter for poets (f), which they apply to lovers: and here the eyes of the bride are compared to the eyes of doves; meaning either the ministers of the Gospel, who are to the church what eyes are to the body; are set in the more eminent part in the church, to order, guide, and direct the members of it; to watch over them, lest any hurt come to them, and give warning of danger; to hold forth the word of light to them, and instruct them how to behave in the church and in the world: and they may be compared to the eyes of doves, for their clearness and perspicuity in discerning Gospel truths; and for their sincerity and simplicity, uprightness and faithfulness, in preaching them; and for the dove like gifts of the Spirit, whereby they are qualified for it; and for, their meekness and humility; or rather the eyes of her understanding are meant, being spiritually enlightened; and particularly the eye of faith by which believers take a view of Christ, of his glory, fulness, and suitableness, and look to him alone for life and salvation. And it may be compared to the eyes of doves for the clearness and quickness, of it, being the evidence of things not seen; and, for its singleness and chastity, the dove looks only to its mate, and destroys those that look with lustful eyes on others (g); believers, being espoused as a chaste virgin to Christ, look only to him as their beloved, to him only for acceptance, righteousness, pardon, and eternal life; and for its modesty and humility, excluding all boasting in the creature, and giving all glory to Christ; and for its beautifulness in the sight of Christ, so that he is even ravished with it, Sol 4:9.

(d) "oculi tui veluti columbarum", Pagninus, Munster, so Ben Melech. (e) So Juno is called "the large-eyed Juno", and Minerva "the blue-eyed goddess", and Chryseus "the black-eyed maid", Homer. Iliad. 1. v. 99, 206, 551. (f) Vid. Barthii Animadv. ad Claudian. in Nupt. Honor. Ode 4. v. 21. (g) Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 10. c. 34. Aelian. Hist. Animal. l. 3. c. 5. p. 44. 15. fair—He discerns beauty in her, who had said, "I am black" (So 1:5), because of the everlasting covenant (Ps 45:11; Isa 62:5; Eph 1:4,5).

doves' eyes—large and beautiful in the doves of Syria. The prominent features of her beauty (Mt 10:16), gentleness, innocence, and constant love, emblem of the Holy Ghost, who changes us to His own likeness (Ge 8:10, 11; Mt 3:16). The opposite kind of eyes (Ps 101:5; Mt 20:15; 2Pe 2:14).1:9-17 The Bridegroom gives high praises of his spouse. In the sight of Christ believers are the excellent of the earth, fitted to be instruments for promoting his glory. The spiritual gifts and graces which Christ bestows on every true believer, are described by the ornaments then in use, ver. 10,11. The graces of the saints are many, but there is dependence upon each other. He who is the Author, will be the Finisher of the good work. The grace received from Christ's fulness, springs forth into lively exercises of faith, affection, and gratitude. Yet Christ, not his gifts, is most precious to them. The word translated camphire, signifies atonement or propitiation. Christ is dear to all believers, because he is the propitiation for their sins. No pretender must have his place in the soul. They resolved to lodge him in their hearts all the night; during the continuance of the troubles of life. Christ takes delight in the good work which his grace has wrought on the souls of believers. This should engage all who are made holy, to be very thankful for that grace which has made those fair, who by nature were deformed. The spouse (the believer) has a humble, modest eye, discovering simplicity and godly sincerity; eyes enlightened and guided by the Holy Spirit, that blessed Dove. The church expresses her value for Christ. Thou art the great Original, but I am but a faint and imperfect copy. Many are fair to look at, yet their temper renders them unpleasant: but Christ is fair, yet pleasant. The believer, ver. 16, speaks with praise of those holy ordinances in which true believers have fellowship with Christ. Whether the believer is in the courts of the Lord, or in retirement; whether following his daily labours, or confined on the bed of sickness, or even in a dungeon, a sense of the Divine presence will turn the place into a paradise. Thus the soul, daily having fellowship with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, enjoys a lively hope of an incorruptible, undefiled, and unfading inheritance above.
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