Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Kings 10:14

Now the weight of gold which came in to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold,
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Gold;   Solomon;   Talent;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Sabeans;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Arabia;   King;   Solomon;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Israel;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Antichrist;   Commerce;   Paul;   Phoenice;   Solomon;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Chronicles, I;   Government;   Israel;   Mining and Metals;   Sheba, Queen of;   Solomon;   Trade and Commerce;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Numbers as Symbols;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Hiram;   Tyre;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Sol'omon;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Scorpion;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Government;   Money;   Solomon;   Tax;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Arabia;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

The weight of gold - was six hundred threescore and six talents - This would amount in our money to £4,683, 675 12s. 8 1/2d. sterling.

This seems to be what he got annually of bullion; but independently of this, he had tribute of all the kings of Arabia, duties from merchantmen, and the traffic of spice merchants; see 1 Kings 10:25.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/1-kings-10.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Six hundred threescore and six talents of gold - About 3,646,350 of our money. Solomon‘s annual revenue exceeded that of Oriental empires very much greater in extent than his, and must have made him one of the richest, if not the very richest, of the monarchs of his time.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-kings-10.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

SOLOMON'S EXCEEDINGLY GREAT WEALTH; THE DESIGN OF HIS THRONE

"Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents of gold, besides that which the traders brought, and the traffic of the merchants, and of all the kings of the mingled people, and of the governors of the country. And king Solomon made two hundred bucklers of beaten gold; six hundred shekels of gold went to one buckler. And he made three hundred shields of beaten gold; three pounds of gold went to one shield: and the king put them in the house of the forest of Lebanon. Moreover the king made a great throne of ivory, and overlaid it with the finest gold. There were six steps to the throne, and the top of the throne was round behind; and there were stays on either side by the place of the seat, and two lions standing beside the stays. And twelve lions stood there on the one side and on the other side upon the six steps: there was not the like made in any kingdom. And all king Solomon's drinking vessels were of gold, and all the vessels of the house of the forest of Lebanon were of pure gold: none were of silver; it was nothing accounted of in the days of Solomon. For the king had at sea a navy of Tarshish with the navy of Hiram: once every three years came the navy of Tarshish, bringing gold, and silver, ivory, and apes, and peacocks."

No particular comment on all this is necessary. Montgomery declared that the 666 talents of gold and the solid gold drinking vessels were, "late exaggerations,"[11] but this writer remains unconvinced that he had any good reason for such an assertion. He certainly gave none. By whatever standards one may estimate Solomon's wealth, it must be judged as incredibly great. It is pointless to calculate the weight of the shields, the bucklers, the drinking vessels, etc. Even if we knew what they weighed, the price of gold has moved from $16.00 a troy ounce a few years ago to about $350.00 an ounce today, and nobody knows what it was worth in the times of Solomon!

The images of the lions that decorated Solomon's throne were made in violation of the Second Commandment of the Decalogue (Exodus 20:4), a fact recognized even by the Jewish historian Josephus.[12] Furthermore, we do not allow for one moment the validity of scholarly efforts to justify Solomon's sins in this matter with their assertion that, "It was necessary for him to put himself on an equality in this respect with neighboring powers"![13] All such excuses for Solomon's actions in this chapter are worthless.

"The throne was round behind" (1 Kings 10:19). The Hebrew word for round (formed only of consonants) is also the word for calf.[14] "This means that there may have been the figure of a bull calfs head above and over the head of Solomon; and if this was the case, we may see the ugly figure of calf-worship casting its shadow over the theism of Israel.[15]

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/1-kings-10.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred and sixty and six talents of gold. From Ophir and Tarshish, and wherever he traded; which was of our money, according to BerewoodF11De Ponder. & Pret. c. 5. , 2,997,000 pounds; or as another learned manF12Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 3. p. 580. , who makes it equal to 5,138,520 ducats of gold.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-kings-10.html. 1999.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents of gold,

Six hundred, … — Which amounts to about three millions of our money. And this gold did not come from Ophir in India, or Tharshish; but from Arabia and Ethiopia, which then were replenished with gold, though exhausted by the insatiable avarice of succeeding Ages.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/1-kings-10.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Kings 10:14 Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents of gold,

Ver. 14. Now the weight of gold that came. to Solomon.] From Ophir, Tarshish, and other places.

Was six hundred threescore and six talents.] Two millions and a half plus or minus.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-kings-10.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Which amounts to about two millions of our money. And this gold did not come from Ophir in India, or Tarshish; but from Arabia and Ethiopia, and other parts, which then were well replenished with gold, though since exhausted by the insatiable avarice of succeeding ages.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-kings-10.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

SOLOMON’S VAST REVENUES, 1 Kings 10:14-29.

14.Six hundred threescore and six talents of gold — There is no settled agreement as to the value of the Hebrew talent, but at the least calculation this was not less than fifteen millions of dollars of our currency. In thus greatly multiplying gold and silver to himself, Solomon transgressed the law of God. Deuteronomy 17:17.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-kings-10.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

1 Kings 10:14. Now the weight of gold, &c. — The history of the queen of Sheba being ended, the writer returns to give an account of Solomon’s riches and magnificence, which he had begun to set forth before. And first he relates what a vast quantity of gold was brought into his kingdom every year, not only from Ophir, but from other countries, into which, perhaps, the queen of Sheba opened him a way, and particularly from Arabia and Ethiopia, which then were replenished with gold, though exhausted by the insatiable avarice of succeeding ages. Six hundred threescore and six talents — Which amount to about three millions of our money.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/1-kings-10.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Gold. His stated revenue was, 4,646,350l. sterling. (Haydock)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/1-kings-10.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

came. Probably in tariffs.

six hundred threescore and six = 666. Symbolical of the height or essence of man"s desire, but all vanity (App-10). Compare Ecclesiastes 2:8, Ecclesiastes 2:11. 1 Timothy 6:10.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-kings-10.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents of gold,

Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year - 666 talents, equal to 3,996,000 pounds sterling. The sources whence this was derived are not mentioned; nor was it the full amount of his revenue; because this was "besides that he had of the merchant-men, and of the traffic of the spice-merchants, and of all the kings of Arabia, and of the governors of the country. The great encouragement he gave to commerce was the means of enriching his royal exchequer. By the fortifications which he erected in various parts of his kingdom, and particularly at such places as Thapsacus, one of the passages of the Euphrates, and at Tadmor, in the Syrian desert, he gave complete security to the caravan trade from the depredations of the Arab marauders; and it was reasonable that, in return for this protection, he should exact a certain toll or duty for the importation of foreign goods. A considerable revenue, too, would arise from the use of the store cities and khans he built; and it is not improbable that those cities were emporia where the caravan merchants unloaded their bales of spices and other commodities, and sold them to the king's factors, who, according to the modern practice in the East, retailed them in the Western markets at a profit. 'The revenue derived from the tributary kings, and from the governors of the country,' must have consisted in the tribute which all inferior magistrates periodically bring to their sovereigns in the East, in the shape of presents of the produce of their respective provinces.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-kings-10.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(14) Talents.—The word properly signifies a “circle,” or “globe,” and the talent (among the Hebrews and other Orientals, as among the Greeks) denoted properly a certain weight. (a) The ordinary talent of gold contained 100 “manehs,” or “portions” (the Greek mna, or mina), and each maneh (as is seen by comparing 1 Kings 10:17 with 2 Chronicles 9:16) contained 100 shekels of gold. According to Josephus (Ant. xiv. 7, 1), each maneh contained 2½ Roman pounds, and the talent, therefore, 250 Roman pounds, or 1,262,500 grains; and this agrees fairly with his computation elsewhere (Ant. iii. 8, 10), that the gold shekel was equivalent to the daric, which is about 129 grains. (See Dictionary of the Bible: “WEIGHTS AND MEASURES.”) According to this calculation, 666 talents would give a weight of gold now worth £7,780,000. (b) On the other hand, the talent of silver is expressly given (by comparison of Exodus 30:13-15; Exodus 38:25-28) at 3,000 “shekels of the sanctuary,” and such a shekel appears, by the extant Maccabæan coins, to be about 220 grains. Of such talents, 666 would give a little more than half the former weight; hence, if the talent of gold here be supposed to be in weight the same as the talent of silver, the whole would give a weight of gold now worth about £4,000,000. Considering that this is expressly stated to be independent of certain customs and tributes, the smaller sum seems more probable; in any case, the amount is surprisingly large. But it should be remembered that at certain times and places accumulations of gold have taken place, so great as practically to reduce its value, and lead to its employment, not as a currency, but as a precious ornament. Making all allowance for exaggeration, this must have been the case among the Mexicans and Peruvians before the Spanish conquests. It is not improbable that the same may have occurred in the time of Solomon.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-kings-10.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred threescore and six talents of gold,
A. M. 2989-3029. B.C. 1015-975. was six hundred. Equal to 4,683,675£ 12s. 8d. sterling; which was what he got annually in bullion
See on ch
9:28
Reciprocal: 1 Kings 9:14 - General1 Chronicles 22:14 - an hundred thousand;  2 Chronicles 9:13 - the weight;  Psalm 72:15 - to him

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Kings 10:14". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-kings-10.html.