Lamentations 1:6
And from the daughter of Zion all her beauty is departed: her princes are become like harts that find no pasture, and they are gone without strength before the pursuer.
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(6) Her princes are become like harts . . .—Probably a reference to the flight and capture of Zedekiah (2Kings 25:5; Jeremiah 39:5), who, with his sons and princes, fell into the hands of the Chaldæans, like fainting and stricken deer.

1:1-11 The prophet sometimes speaks in his own person; at other times Jerusalem, as a distressed female, is the speaker, or some of the Jews. The description shows the miseries of the Jewish nation. Jerusalem became a captive and a slave, by reason of the greatness of her sins; and had no rest from suffering. If we allow sin, our greatest adversary, to have dominion over us, justly will other enemies also be suffered to have dominion. The people endured the extremities of famine and distress. In this sad condition Jerusalem acknowledged her sin, and entreated the Lord to look upon her case. This is the only way to make ourselves easy under our burdens; for it is the just anger of the Lord for man's transgressions, that has filled the earth with sorrows, lamentations, sickness, and death.Her princes ... - Jeremiah had before his mind the sad flight of Zedekiah and his men of war, and their capture within a few miles of Jerusalem Jeremiah 39:4-5. 6. beauty … departed—her temple, throne, and priesthood.

harts that find no pasture—an animal timid and fleet, especially when seeking and not able to "find pasture."


All the inhabitants of Zion have lost their former beauty; whatsoever splendour the city had, whether from the multitude or gallantry of her inhabitants, it is all gone; her nobles are become thin and ill-favoured, like beasts almost starved, their enemies pursue them to destroy them, and they have no strength to oppose or resist them. And from the daughter of Zion all her beauty is departed,.... The kingdom removed; the priesthood ceased; the temple, their beautiful house, burnt; the palaces of their king and nobles demolished; and everything in church and state that was glorious were now no more:

her princes are become like harts that find no pasture; that are heartless and without courage, fearful and timorous, as harts are, especially when destitute of food. The Targum is

"her princes run about for food, as harts run about in the wilderness, and find no place fit for pasture:''

and they are gone without strength before the pursuer; having no spirit nor courage to oppose the enemy, nor strength to flee from him, they fell into his hands, and so were carried captive; see Jeremiah 52:8. Jarchi observes, that the word for "pursuer" has here all its letters, and nowhere else; and so denotes the full pursuit of the enemy, and the complete victory obtained by him.

And from the daughter of Zion all her beauty hath departed: her princes are become {h} like harts that find no pasture, and they are gone without strength before the pursuer.

(h) As men pined away with sorrow and that have no courage.

6. majesty] mg. less well, beauty. Exhaustion from hunger and fatigue has taken the place of dignity and wealth.

Her princes are become like harts] The most natural reference is to the flight and capture of Zedekiah and his princes, Jeremiah 39:4 f. Cp. Jeremiah 52:10. The LXX and Vulg. for “harts” read (with different vowel punctuation) rams, a word used elsewhere (e.g. Exodus 15:15; see mg.) for leaders. But the figure needs an animal which is hunted. Budde therefore accepts the Targ. “stags.”Verse 6. - Beauty; rather, glory. Like harts that find no pasture; and therefore have no strength left to flee. An allusion to the attempted flight of Zedekiah and his companions (Jeremiah 39:4, 5). The closing portion of this chapter, viz., the notice regarding the liberation of Jehoiachin from imprisonment, ad his elevation to royal honours by Evil-merodach after Nebuchadnezzar's death, substantially agrees with the account given of that even in 2 Kings 25:27-30. The difference of date, "on the twenty-fifth of the month" (Jeremiah 52:31), and "on the twenty-seventh of the month" in 2 Kings, has arisen through the entrance of a clerical error into one text or the other. The few remaining variations of the two texts have no influence on the meaning. As to the fact itself, and its importance for the people languishing in exile, we may refer to the explanation given at 2 Kings 25:27.
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