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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 1

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1 SOLOMON's song of songs:

2 a 1:2 By its use of pronouns the Hebrew text implies different speakers, but does not indicate them specifically. They are suggested here by ‘Bride’ etc. May he smother me with kisses.

Your love is more fragrant than wine, 3fragrant is the scent of your anointing oils, and your name is like those oils poured out b 1:3 poured out: prob. rdg; Heb. word uncertain. ; that is why maidens love you. 4Take me with you, let us make haste; bring me into your chamber c 1:4 your chamber: so Syriac; Heb. his chamber. , O king.

Let us rejoice and be glad for you; let us praise your love more than wine, your caresses d your caresses: so Syriac; Heb. they love you. more than rare wine.

5Daughters of Jerusalem, I am dark and lovely, like the tents of Kedar or the tent curtains of Shalmah. 6Do not look down on me; dark of hue I may be because I was scorched by the sun, when my mother's sons were displeased with me and sent me to watch over the vineyards; but my own vineyard I did not watch over! 7Tell me, my true love, where you mind your flocks, where you rest them at noon, that I may not be left picking lice as I sit among your companions' herds.

8If you do not know, O fairest of women, go, follow the tracks of the sheep and graze your young goats by the shepherds' huts.

9I would compare you, my dearest, to a chariot-horse of Pharaoh. 10Your cheeks are lovely between plaited tresses, your neck with its jewelled chains.

11We shall make you braided plaits of gold set with beads of silver.

12While the king reclines on his couch, my spikenard gives forth its scent. 13My beloved is for me a sachet of myrrh lying between my breasts; 14my beloved is for me a spray of henna blossom from the vineyards of En-gedi.

15How beautiful you are, my dearest, ah, how beautiful, your eyes are like doves!

16How beautiful you are, my love, and how handsome!

Our couch is shaded with branches; 17the beams of our house are of cedar, our rafters are all of pine.

Notes:

a 1:2 By its use of pronouns the Hebrew text implies different speakers, but does not indicate them specifically. They are suggested here by ‘Bride’ etc.

b 1:3 poured out: prob. rdg; Heb. word uncertain.

c 1:4 your chamber: so Syriac; Heb. his chamber.

d your caresses: so Syriac; Heb. they love you.

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