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Jeremiah 37:16

16. When Jeremiah was entered into the dungeon, and into the cabins, and jeremiah had remained there many days;

16. Et quo venit Jeremias in domum lacus, et ad mansiones, et sedit ibi Jeremias diebus multis.

 

The particle כי, ki, is to be taken here as an adverb of time, as I think, though interpreters have not observed this, When Jeremiah, he says, came into the house of the pit or dungeon, or of the prison. The word בור means also sometimes the grave, but is to be taken here for a pit or a deep place: he means that it was a dark and filthy prison. And he adds, and to the dwellings I know not why some have rendered it, “victualling houses;” for the word החניות, echeniot, means narrow prisons, which we call at this day cachots: 108108     The versions and the Targ. render the word differently; its meaning was not evidently understood. Blaney gives the best explanation, who renders it “cells.” “The dungeon,” he says, was a deep pit like a well, and near the bottom were scooped niches, or cells, for the lodgement of the prisoners. The word comes from, הנה, to fix, to settle, to lodge; hence the plural noun here means places for prisoners to settle or lodge on, where they could fix themselves, without sinking in the mire at the bottom of the pit, as the case was with Jeremiah on another occasion. See Jeremiah 38:6. That pit, it seems, had no cells. — Ed he was therefore cast into a dungeon, where there were narrow places, that, the holy man had no space either freely to rise or to stand or to sit down, or to he down. Then the Prophet shews that he was so confined by the straitness of the place, that he could hardly sit or lay down or stand erect.; and he says that he was there many days. 109109     This paragraph is intermingled in the original with the text; but it has been thought better to introduce it separately. — Ed.

We must notice the circumstances of the case: It was a thing cruel enough in itself, that an innocent man, after having been beaten, should be thrust into prison: but when a dark and deep prison was chosen, and when he was confined to a narrow place, as though he was in fetters, it was a great addition to the indignity offered to him. Since then the holy Prophet was so atrociously treated, let us not think it strange, when the same thing at this day is endured by God’s children, and for the same cause, even for bearing testimony to celestial truth. When the length of time is added, it increased the evil; for he was not retained in prison for a few days or for a month, but until the city was taken; not indeed in that prison, for the king, as we shall presently see, removed him into the ccurt of the prison. He was, however, the second time cast into a filthy prison, as though he was destined to die; thence he was afterwards removed also by the order of the king. But the Prophet says, that he was in that dungeon many days. It now follows —


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