2 Kings 11:16
And they laid hands on her; and she went by the way by the which the horses came into the king's house: and there was she slain.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(16) They laid hands on her.—So the LXX. and Vulg. The Hebrew phrase means: and they made room for her on both sides—i.e., the crowd fell back, and a lane was formed for her exit (so the Targum and Rashi).

She went . . . king’s house.—She entered the palace by way of the entry of the horses. Athaliah was conducted to the royal stables which adjoined the palace, and there put to death.

2 Kings 11:16. They laid hands on her — The Hebrew, ישׁמו לה ידים, Jashimu lah jadaim, may be properly rendered, Then they gave her room, or left her a free passage to depart out of the temple. Thus Houbigant, after the Chaldee. And she went by the way, &c. — By the great public road, by which horses and chariots went to the palace. And there was she slain —

In an ignominious place and manner, as her mother Jezebel had been.11:13-16 Athaliah hastened her own destruction. She herself was the greatest traitor, and yet was first and loudest in crying, Treason, treason! The most guilty are commonly the most forward to reproach others.And they laid hands on her - Most modern critics render - "and they gave her space," i. e., they cleared a way for her, and allowed her to walk out of the temple not only unharmed but untonched. 15. without the ranges—that is, fences, that the sacred place might not be stained with human blood. They laid hands on her, or, they gave her space or room, to wit, to go out of the court of the temple, and did not keep her within it, as they could have done. Or, they appointed bands for her; they ordered two bands of the Levites to follow her, and kill her.

By the way by the which the horses came into the king’s house; by the great and public road in which horses and chariots went to the palace.

There was she slain; in an ignominious place and manner, as her mother Jezebel had been. And they laid hands on her,.... Or rather,"set a place for her'',as the Targum; so Jarchi and Kimchi; made a space, opened a way for her to come out of the temple into their ranks, that she might be there taken and slain, and not in the temple:

and she went by the way by the which the horses came into the king's house; either the high road in which the horses and carriages went to the palace, or the way to the king's stables near the palace: and there was she slain; they let her go so far, which was far enough from the temple, and then they slew her.

And they laid hands on her; and she went by the way by the which the horses came into the king's house: and there was she slain.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
16. And they laid hands on her] R.V. So they made way for her. The rendering of the A.V. agrees with the LXX. and the Vulgate. But the verb here used is not that employed for such an act as the arrest here described would be. It is better therefore to adopt the translation of the Targum followed by Jewish and many modern commentators, ‘They gave room to her on both hands’. Literally the words mean, ‘they arranged for her two sides’, thus making a space between which she could walk.

by the way by the which the horses came into the king’s house] R.V. by the way of the horses’ entry to the king’s house. This is not to be confounded with the ‘horse gate’ of Jerusalem, spoken of Nehemiah 3:28. That was a gate of the city, not of the king’s palace. The way here spoken of was a private road to the king’s house.

there was she slain] No doubt according to the orders of Jehoiada.Verse 16. - And they laid hands on her. So the LXX. (ἐπέθηκαν αὐτῇ χεῖρας), the Vulgate, Luther, and others; but most moderns understand that they formed in two lines, one on either side of her, and so let her pass out of the temple and proceed towards the palace untouched - the divinity that hedged a queen preventing them from molesting her until the time came for her execution (see the Revised Version). And she went by the way by the which the horses came into the king's house. Josephus makes Athaliah pass out of the temple by the east gate, and descend into the Kedron valley. He says she was put to death "at the gate of the king's mules," but does not mark the locality. The gate intended can scarcely be the "horse gate" of Nehemiah 3:28, which was in the eastern wall, and north of the temple. It was probably a gate on the western side of the Tyropoeon valley, giving entrance to the stables of the palace (comp. 2 Chronicles 23:15, and see below, ver. 20). And there was she slain; "with the sword" (ver. 20). A single blow from one of the guardsmen probably sufficed. The execution of these plans. The high priest gave the captains "the spears and shields (שׁלטים: see at 2 Samuel 8:7) which (belonged) to king David, that were in the house of Jehovah," i.e., the weapons which David had presented to the sanctuary as dedicatory offerings. Instead of החנית we ought probably to read החניתת (cf. Micah 4:3; Isaiah 2:4), after the החניתים of the Chronicles, since the collective force of הנית is very improbable in prose, and a ת might easily drop out through a copyist's error. Jehoiada gave the captains weapons from the temple, because, as has been already observed, they had come unarmed, and not, as Thenius imagines, to provide them with old and sacred weapons instead of their ordinary ones. In 2 Kings 11:11 the position of all the divisions is given in a comprehensive manner, for the purpose of appending the further course of the affair, namely, the coronation of the king. "Thus the halberdiers stood, every one with his weapons in his hand, from the right wing of the house to the left wing, towards the altar (of burnt-offering) and the (temple-) house, round about the king," i.e., to cover the king on all sides. For it is evident that we are not to understand סביב על־המּלך as signifying the encircling of the king, from the statement in 2 Kings 11:12, according to which Jehoiada did not bring out the king's son till after the men had taken up their positions. The use of הרצים, to signify the captains with the armed priests and Levites put under their command for this purpose, is an uncommon one, but it may be explained from the fact that רצים had retained the general meaning of royal halberdiers; and the priests and Levites under the command of the captains of the royal body-guard by this very act discharged the duty of the royal body-guard itself. The chronicler has used the indefinite expression כּל-haa`aam, the whole of the people assembled in the temple-court.
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