Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Kings 16:18

When Zimri saw that the city was taken, he went into the citadel of the king's house and burned the king's house over him with fire, and died,
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Arson;   Judgments;   Omri;   Suicide;   Zimri;   Thompson Chain Reference - Despair;   Hope-Despair;   Suicide;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Omri;   Tibni;   Zimri;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Palestine;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Murder;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Omri;   Tirza;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Omri;   Samaria;   Tibni;   Tirzah (2);   Zimri;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Archaeology and Biblical Study;   Castle;   Palace;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Fortification and Siegecraft;   Kings, Books of;   Zimri (1);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Omri ;   Tirzah ;   Zimri ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Nimshi;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Omri;   Samaria;   Zimri;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Palace;   Zim'ri;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Israel;   Babylonish Captivity, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Murder;   Omri;   Palace;   Zimri (1);   Zimri (2);  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The palace of the king‘s house - The tower of the king‘s house. A particular part of the palace - either the “harem,” or, more probably, the keep or citadel, a tower stronger and loftier than the rest of the palace.

Zimri‘s desperate act has been repeated more than once. That the last king of Assyria, the Sardanapalus of the Greeks, thus destroyed himself, is almost the only “fact” which we know concerning him.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-kings-16.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And it came to pass, that when Zimri saw that the city was taken,.... That Omri, and the army with him, had got into it, being a place not much fortified, and Zimri not having force enough to defend it against such an army:

that he went into the palace of the king's house; into the innermost and most splendid, as well as the strongest part of it:

and burnt the king's house over him with fire, and he died; that he might not fall into the hands of his rival, who he might fear would use him ill, and that he might not enjoy the royal palace; though Kimchi thinks that Omri set fire to the palace, and burnt it over the head of Zimri, in which he perished; and this sense the text will bear.

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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.
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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-kings-16.html. 1999.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Kings 16:18 And it came to pass, when Zimri saw that the city was taken, that he went into the palace of the king’s house, and burnt the king’s house over him with fire, and died,

Ver. 18. The city was taken.] And so himself like to be unkinged. Of the Ruteni it is storied, that many times they have each day a new king, or more, as any of them are of power to make themselves so. This must needs be regnum Cuclopicum.

And burnt the king’s house over him.] The like did Sardanapalus, the last king of Assyria, not willing to fall into the hands of Arbacus his own general, by whom he was besieged at Nineveh. (a)

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-kings-16.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

1 Kings 16:18. And burned the king's house over him with fire Some interpreters would rather have it, that Omri set the royal palace on fire, in order to burn Zimri in it, who had retired thither. The Hebrew may, indeed, bear that construction, but the other seems the most likely interpretation; nor has prophane history neglected to preserve the memory of some princes who have chosen to die in this manner, rather than fall by the sword; whereof Sardanapalus is one of the most ancient and most notorious examples. Calmet.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/1-kings-16.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Burnt the king’s house over him; or, and he burnt, &c. Either,

1. Omri burnt it over Zimri; for pronouns sometimes respect more remote nouns. Or rather,

2. Zimri, (to whom both the foregoing and following words apparently belong,) who burnt it upon himself, that neither himself nor the royal palace and treasures might come into the hands of his insulting adversary.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-kings-16.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

18.Palace of the king’s house — Rather, as Gesenius explains it, “Fortress of the king’s house; the innermost part, as the highest and strongest — the citadel. J.D. Michaelis, and after him most modern interpreters, here translate it the women’s apartment; but there is no trace of this in the ancient interpreters, nor is there any reason for departing from the simple explanation given above.”

Burnt the king’s house over him with fire — As Saracus, or Sardanapalus, is said to have done, when besieged in a similar way at Nineveh.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-kings-16.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

1 Kings 16:18. When Zimri saw that the city was taken — Tirzah, though a beautiful city, it seems, was not fortified; so that Omri soon made himself master of it, and forced Zimri into the palace; which, as he was unable to defend, and yet unwilling to surrender it, he burned, and himself in it: grudging that his rival should ever enjoy so sumptuous a palace, and fearing that if he fell into the hands of his enemies, either alive or dead, he should be ignominiously treated. See to what desperate practices men’s wickedness sometimes brings them, and how it hurries them to their own ruin! See the disposition of incendiaries, who set palaces and kingdoms on fire, though they are themselves in danger of perishing in the flame!

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/1-kings-16.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Himself. Hebrew may also signify, "he (Amri) burnt him." --- Zambri, his rival. But the other sense is more natural. (Calmet) --- Thus Sardanapalus chose to destroy himself, with all his riches, (Justin i.; Atheneus xii. 7.) to prevent the dead body from being insulted. It was for this reason the Sylla, the first of the Cornelian family, ordered his remains to be burnt. (Cicero, Leg. i.) (Tirinus)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/1-kings-16.html. 1859.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And it came to pass, when Zimri saw that the city was taken, that he went into the palace of the king's house, and burnt the king's house over him with fire, and died,

The palace of the king's house, [ 'armown (Hebrew #759) beeyt (Hebrew #1004) hamelek (Hebrew #4428)] - the fortress of the kings house; not the harem, as J.D. Michaelis, Ewald, and others suppose, but the central, which was the highest and strongest, part, the citadel, of the building (Proverbs 18:19). [The Septuagint has: eis antron, into a cave.]

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-kings-16.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(18) The palace of the king’s house.—The same phrase is found in 2 Kings 15:25. The word here rendered “palace” evidently means (as is clear from its derivation) “the high place,” or “citadel,” of the building. Some render it the “harem,” with which the curious rendering ( ἄντρον) of the LXX.—signifying properly a cave or “lurking-place”—may perhaps, agree. But this is not suggested by the word itself. This desperate act of Zimri, which has many parallels in Eastern history, seems to indicate that there was held to be something especially treasonable, and therefore unpardonable, in his assassination of Elah. (See 1 Kings 16:20, and 2 Kings 9:31.)

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-kings-16.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And it came to pass, when Zimri saw that the city was taken, that he went into the palace of the king's house, and burnt the king's house over him with fire, and died,
and burnt the king's house
Judges 9:54; 1 Samuel 31:4,5; 2 Samuel 17:23; Job 2:9,10; Matthew 27:5
Reciprocal: 2 Kings 8:15 - so that he died;  1 Chronicles 2:6 - Zimri;  1 Chronicles 10:4 - Saul took;  Hosea 7:7 - devoured;  Acts 16:27 - he drew

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Kings 16:18". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-kings-16.html.