Proverbs 5:19
Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe; let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; and be thou ravished always with her love.
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(19) Loving hind and pleasant roe.—The deer and chamois, from their grace and speed and lustrous eyes, have always been chosen by the Oriental poets as figures of human strength and beauty. (Comp. Song of Solomon 2:9; Song of Solomon 2:17; Song of Solomon 7:3; Song of Solomon 8:14; Psalm 18:33.) Both these animals are said to be remarkable for their affection to their young.

Proverbs 5:19. Let her be as the loving hind — Hebrew, as the hind of loves; as amiable and delightful as the hinds are to princes and great men, who used to make them tame and familiar, and to take great delight in them, as has been observed by many writers. “The wise man,” says Bishop Patrick, “describes allegorically the felicities of the nuptial state, first under the comparison of a domestic fountain, where a man may quench his natural thirst, and from whence streams, that is, children, may be derived, to serve the public good; and, secondly, under the comparisons, of a young hind and pleasant roe, which naturalists have observed to be very fond creatures, which were usually kept by the greatest persons in their palaces, who diverted themselves with them, and adorned them with chains and garlands.” Let her breasts — Rather, her loves, as Houbigant renders דדוה, at all times, in all ages and conditions; not only love her when she is young and beautiful, but when she is old, or even deformed; and be thou always ravished with her love — Love her fervently. It is a hyperbolical expression.

5:15-23 Lawful marriage is a means God has appointed to keep from these destructive vices. But we are not properly united, except as we attend to God's word, seeking his direction and blessing, and acting with affection. Ever remember, that though secret sins may escape the eyes of our fellow-creatures, yet a man's ways are before the eyes of the Lord, who not only sees, but ponders all his goings. Those who are so foolish as to choose the way of sin, are justly left of God to themselves, to go on in the way to destruction.Better, "A loving hind (is she) and pleasant roe." As in the whole circle of Arab and Persian poetry the antelope and the gazelle are the chosen images of beauty, so they served with equal fitness for the masculine and feminine types of it. (Compare the names Tabitha and Dorcas Acts 9:36. 19. loving … roe—other figures for a wife from the well-known beauty of these animals.

breasts—(Compare So 1:13; Eze 23:3, 8).

ravished—literally, "intoxicated," that is, fully satisfied.

As the loving hind, or, as the beloved hind, Heb. the hind of loves; as amiable and delightful as the hinds are, either,

1. To their males, the harts; or,

2. To princes and great men, who used to make them tame and familiar, and to take great delight in them, as hath been noted by many writers; of which see my Latin Synopsis.

Her breasts, i.e. her loves and embraces, expressed by lying between the breasts, Song of Solomon 1:13; Compare Ezekiel 23:3,8,21.

At all times; at all convenient times; for that there may be excess in the use of the marriage bed is manifest, not only from many scriptures, but from the light of nature, and the consent of wise and sober heathens, who have laid restraints upon men in this particular. A man may be drunk with his own wine, and intemperate with his own wife. Or, in all ages and conditions. Do not only love her when she is young and beautiful, but also when she is old and deformed.

Be thou ravished; love her fervently. It is an hyperbolical expression.

Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe,.... That is, the wife of youth; let her always appear to thee as amiable and lovely as these creatures are; or let her be loved by thee as these are by princes and great men (w), who used to keep them tame, keep them clean, wash, comb them, and adorn them, and play with them; or rather, as these creatures are loving to their mates, let thy love be single, chaste, pure, and fervent, as theirs; see Sol 2:9. The pure church of Christ is very different from the apostate church of Rome; the one is compared to a loving and lovely creature, innocent and chaste; the other to a cruel and savage beast, Revelation 13:1;

let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; even as it were to be inebriated therewith, and so as not to seek out elsewhere to strange women for satisfaction; see Sol 1:13. The church's breasts are the ordinances of the Gospel, which are said to be like young roes, and afford great pleasure, satisfaction, and refreshment to true believers, Sol 4:5;

and be thou ravished always with her love; greatly delighted with it, both in loving her and being loved by her; and let this always continue in old age as well as in youth; or now as well as formerly, and not for a short time, but for continuance: or, "err thou always in her love" (x); if any error is committed by thee, let it be on the side of love, in loving her too much; better err in loving her than in loving a strange woman.

(w) "Cervus erat forma praestanti", &c. Virgil. Aeneid l. 7. (x) "errabis", Montanus, Raynus, Cocceius; "hallucinaberis", Vatablus; "errato", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe; let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; and be thou ravished always with her love.
19. Let her be as] These words, which are not in the Hebrew, are not wanted. Read “A loving hind &c.” The imagery again, which is thoroughly Oriental, reappears in the Song of Solomon (Proverbs 2:9; Proverbs 2:17, Proverbs 7:3, Proverbs 8:14).

Verse 19. - Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe. The words in italics do not occur in the original. The expression, "the loving hind and pleasant roe," is, therefore, to be attached to the preceding verse, as carrying on the sense and as descriptive of the grace and fascinating charms of the young wife. As combining these attributes, she is to be the object of thy love and devotion,the one in whom thine affections are to find the fulfilment of their desires. Love and grace are her possessions. The loving hind (Hebrew, ayyeleth ahavim); literally, the hind of loves, which may be understood, as in the Authorized Version, as pointing to the fondness of this animal for its young, or as descriptive of its beauty and the extreme gracefulness of its form. In this sense the phrase may be rendered, "the lovely hind." The ayyeleth, or ayyalah, feminine of ayyal, "stag," or "hart," was in all probability the gazelle, Pleasant roe (Hebrew, yhaalath khen); literally, the ibex of grace. The particular expression only occurs here in the Bible. The yaalath is the feminine of yaal, "the ibex" or "mountain goat" according to Bochart, or the "chamois" according to Gesenius. It does not appear that it is so much "the pleasantness" or amiability of this animal which is here alluded to as its gracefulness of form. As terms of endearment, the words entered largely into the erotic poetry of the East. Thus in the Song of Solomon 4:5 the bride likens her beloved to "a roe or young hart" (cf. also Song of Solomon 4:17 and Song 8:14). while numerous examples might be quoted from the Arabian and Persian poets. They were also employed sometimes as names for women. Compare the superscription of Psalm 22, Ayyeleth hash-shakar, "Upon the hind of the dawn." Let her breasts satisfy thee at all times. The love of the wife is to refresh and fully satisfy the husband. The word dadeyah, "her breasts," only occurs here and in Ezekiel 23:3, 8, 21, and is equivalent to dodeyah, "her love." The marginal reading, "water thee," serves to bring out the literal meaning of the y'ravvuka, derived from ravah, in kal, "to drink largely," "to be satisfied with drink," but misses the emphatic force of the piel, "to be fully satisfied or satiated." This is expressed very forcibly in the Vulgate rendering, "Let her breasts inebriate thee (indebrient te)," which represents the strong influence which the attractions of the wife are to maintain. The LXX., on the other hand, avoiding the rather sensual colouring of the language, substitutes, "May she thine own lead thee, and be with thee always." And be thou ravished always with her love; i.e. let it intoxicate thee. The teacher, by a bold figure, describes the entire fascination which the husband is to allow the wife to exercise over him. The verb shagah is "to reel under the influence of wine," and is so used in the succeeding vers. 20 and 23, and Proverbs 20:1 and Isaiah 28:7. The primary meaning, "to err from the way," scarcely applies here, and does not express the idea of the teacher, which is to describe "an intensity of love connected with the feeling of superabundant happiness" (Delitzsch). The Vulgate, In amore ejus delectare jugiter, "In her love delight thyself continually," and the LXX., "For in her love thou shalt be daily engaged," are mere paraphrases. Proverbs 5:19The subject, 19a, set forth as a theme courts love for her who is to be loved, for she presents herself as lovely. איּלת is the female of the stag, which may derive its name איּל from the weapon-power of its horns, and יעלה (from יעל, Arab. w'al, to climb), that of the wild-goat (יעל); and thus properly, not the gazelle, which is called צבי on account of its elegance, but the chamois. These animals are commonly used in Semitic poetry as figures of female beauty on account of the delicate beauty of their limbs and their sprightly black eyes. אהבים signifies always sensual love, and is interchanged in this erotic meaning (Proverbs 7:18) with דּודים. In 19b the predicate follows the subject. The Graec. Venet. translates as if the word were דודיה, and the Syr. as if it were דרכיה, but Aquila rightly translates τίτθοι αὐτῆς. As τίτθος is derived (vid., Curtius, Griech. Etymologie, Nr. 307) from dhâ, to suck (causative, with anu, to put to sucking), so דּד, שׁד, תּד, Arab. thady (commonly in dual thadjein), from שׁדה, Arab. thdy, rigare, after which also the verb ירוּוּך is chosen: she may plentifully give thee to drink; figuratively equivalent to, refresh or (what the Aram. רוּי precisely means) fascinate

(Note: Many editions have here בּכל־; but this Dagesh, which is contrary to rule, is to be effaced.)

thee, satisfy thee with love. דּדּים also is an erotic word, which besides in this place is found only in Ezekiel (Ezekiel 23:3, Ezekiel 23:8, Ezekiel 23:21). The lxx obliterates the strong sensual colouring of this line. In 19c it changes תּשׁגּה into תשׂגה, πολλοστὸς ἔσῃ, perhaps also because the former appeared to be too sensual. Moses ha-Darshan (in Rashi) proposes to explain it after the Arab. sjy, to cover, to cast over, to come over anything (III equals עסק, to employ oneself with something): engage thyself with her love, i.e., be always devoted to her in love. And Immanuel himself, the author of a Hebrew Divan expatiating with unparalleled freedom in erotic representations, remarks, while he rightly understands תשׁגה of the fascination of love: קורא התמדת חשׁקו אפילו באשׁתו שׁגגה, he calls the husband's continual caressing of the wife an error. But this moral side-glance lies here at a distance from the poet. He speaks here of a morally permissible love-ecstasy, or rather, since תמיד excludes that which is extraordinary, of an intensity of love connected with the feeling of superabundant happiness. שׁגה properly signifies to err from the way, therefore figuratively, with ב of a matter, like delirare ea, to be wholly captivated by her, so that one is no longer in his own power, can no longer restrain himself - the usual word for the intoxication of love and of wine, Proverbs 20:1 (Fl.).

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