Ecclesiastes 2:8

I gathered me also silver and gold, and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces: I gat me men singers and women singers, and the delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts.

I gathered me also silver and gold,.... In great quantities: the weight of gold which came to him in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents; see 1 Kings 9:14;

and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces; whatsoever was valuable and precious, such as is laid up in the cabinets of kings, as jewels and precious stones; and everything rare and curious, to be found in all provinces of the earth, or which were brought from thence as presents to him; the Targum is,

"and the treasures of kings and provinces, given to me for tribute:''

wherefore, if any pleasure arises from these things, as do to the virtuosi, Solomon enjoyed it. Moreover, among the treasures of kings were precious garments of various sorts, as were in the treasury of Ahasuerus {l}; and when Alexander took Shushan, he found in the king's treasures, of Hermionic purple, to the value of five thousand talents, which had been laid up there almost two hundred years {m}; and to such treasure Christ alludes, Matthew 6:19;

I got me men singers and women singers; the harmony and music of whose voices greatly delight; see 2 Samuel 19:35; the Targum interprets it both of instruments of music for the Levites to use in the temple, and of singing men and women at a feast: and such persons were employed among other nations {n}, on such occasions, to entertain their guests; and are called the ornaments of feasts {o}; as were also "choraules", or pipers {p};

and the delights of the sons of men; as musical instruments, and that of all sorts; such as David his father invented; and to which he might add more, and indeed got all that were to be obtained; see Amos 6:5. The two last words, rendered "musical instruments, of all sorts", are differently interpreted; the Targum interprets them of hot waters and baths, having pipes to let out hot water and cold; Aben Ezra, of women taken captive; Jarchi, of chariots and covered wagons; the Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions, of cup bearers, men, and women, that pour out wine and serve it; and the Vulgate Latin version, of cups and pots, to pour out wine. It seems best to understand it of musical instruments, or of musical compositions {q}; sung either with a single voice, or in concert; which, according to Bochart {r}, were called "sidoth", from Sido, a Phoenician woman of great note, the inventor of them or rather from giving unequal sounds, which, by their grateful mixture and temperament, broke and destroyed {s} one another.

{l} Targum Sheni in Esther vi. 10.
{m} Plutarch. in Alexandro, p. 686. Vid. Homer. Iliad. 24. v. 224-234.
{n} Vid. A. Geli. Noct. Attic. l. 19. c. 9. Homer. Odyss. 8. v. 62, 73, 74. & 9. v. 5-7.
{o} Homer. Odyss. 21. v. 430.
{p} Vid. Gutberleth. Conjectanea, &c. p. 162, &c.
{q} Vid. Gusset. Comment. Heb. p. 832.
{r} Hierozoic. par. 2. l. 6. c. 13. col. 847.
{s} Buxtorf. in voce ddv, See Weemse's Christian Synagog. p. 144.