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Jeremiah 9:17

    Jeremiah 9:17 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning women, that they may come:

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    Thus said the LORD of hosts, Consider you, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning women, that they may come:

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for the skilful women, that they may come:

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    This is what the Lord of armies has said: Take thought and send for the weeping women, so that they may come; and send for the wise women, so that they may come:

    Webster's Revision

    Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for the skilful women, that they may come:

    World English Bible

    Thus says Yahweh of Armies, Consider, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for the skillful women, that they may come:

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for the cunning women, that they may come:

    Clarke's Commentary on Jeremiah 9:17

    Call for the mourning women - Those whose office it was to make lamentations at funerals, and to bewail the dead, for which they received pay. This custom continues to the present in Asiatic countries. In Ireland this custom also prevails, which no doubt their ancestors brought from the east. I have often witnessed it, and have given a specimen of this elsewhere. See the note on Matthew 9:23. The first lamentations for the dead consisted only in the sudden bursts of inexpressible grief, like that of David over his son Absalom, 2 Samuel 19:4. But as men grew refined, it was not deemed sufficient for the surviving relatives to vent their sorrows in these natural, artless expressions of wo, but they endeavored to join others as partners in their sorrows. This gave rise to the custom of hiring persons to weep at funerals, which the Phrygians and Greeks borrowed from the Hebrews. Women were generally employed on these occasions, because the tender passions being predominant in this sex, they succeeded better in their parts; and there were never wanting persons who would let out their services to hire on such occasions. Their lamentations were sung to the pipe as we learn from Matthew 9:23. See the funeral ceremonies practiced at the burial of Hector, as described by Homer: -

    Οἱ δ' επει εισαγαγον κλυτα δωματα, τον μεν επειτα

    Τρητοις εν λεχεεσσι θεσαν, παρα δ' εἱσαν αοιδους,

    Θρηνων εξαρχους, οἱ τε στονοεσσαν αοιδην

    Οἱ μεν αρ' εθρηνεον, επι δε στεναχοντο γυναικες.

    Il. lib. 24., ver. 719.

    "Arrived within the royal house, they stretched

    The breathless Hector on a sumptuous bed,

    And singers placed beside him, who should chant

    The strain funereal; they with many a groan

    The dirge began; and still at every close

    The female train with many a groan replied."

    Cowper.

    St. Jerome tells us that even to his time this custom continued in Judea; that women at funerals, with dishevelled hair and naked breasts, endeavored in a modulated voice to invite others to lament with them. The poem before us, from the seventeenth to the twenty-second verse, is both an illustration and confirmation of what has been delivered on this subject, and worthy of the reader's frequent perusal, on account of its affecting pathos, moral sentiments, and fine images, particularly in the twenty-first verse, where death is described in as animated a prosopopoeia as can be conceived. See Lototh's twenty-second Prelection, and Dodd. The nineteenth verse is supposed to be the funeral song of the women.

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    Barnes' Notes on Jeremiah 9:17

    The mourning women - Hired to attend at funerals, and by their skilled wailings aid the real mourners in giving vent to their grief. Hence, they are called "cunning," literally "wise" women, wisdom being constantly used in Scripture for anything in which people are trained.

    Wesley's Notes on Jeremiah 9:17

    9:17 Women - Who were hired to tear their hair, and beat their breasts, with other mourning postures, a foolish custom which has obtained in most ages and countries. Cunning - Such as are most skilful in it.