Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Esther 8:10

He wrote in the name of King Ahasuerus, and sealed it with the king's signet ring, and sent letters by couriers on horses, riding on steeds sired by the royal stud.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Camel;   Dromedary;   Mail;   Post;   Proclamation;   Ring;   Thompson Chain Reference - Animals;   Dromedaries;   Posts;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Beasts;   Camel, the;   Horse, the;   Mule, the;   Rings;   Travellers;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Letters;   Mule;   Posts;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Persia;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Animals;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Post;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Camel;   Epistle;   Esther;   Mule;   Persia;   Seal;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Apocrypha;   Couriers;   Esther;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Camel;   Mule;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Camel;   Mule;   Posts,;   Seal, Signet;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Dromedary;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Beast;   Camel;   Epistle;   Horse;   Mare;   Mule;   Post;   Seal;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Dromedary;   Hapax Legomena;   Horse;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for June 26;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

On mules, camels, and young dromedaries - What these beasts were is difficult to say. The word רכש rechesh, which we translate mules, signifies a swift chariot horse.

The strange word אחשתרנים achashteranim is probably a Persian word, but perhaps incurably corrupted. The most likely derivation is that of Bochart, from the Persian akhash, huge, large, rough, and aster, a mule; large mules.

The words הרמכים בני beney harammachim, the sons of mares, which we translate dromedaries, are supposed to signify mules, produced between the he ass and the mare, to distinguish them from those produced between the stallion and the ass, But there is really so much confusion about these matters, and so little consent among learned men as to the signification of these words, and even the true knowledge of them is of such little importance, that we may well rest contented with such names as our modern translations have given us. They were, no doubt, the swiftest and hardiest beasts that the city or country could produce.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/esther-8.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Riders on mules, camels and young dromedaries - Most moderns translate “riders upon coursers and mules, the offspring of mares;” but the words translated “mules” and “mares,” are of very doubtful signification, since they scarcely occur elsewhere. The real meaning of the clause must remain doubtful; perhaps the true translation is, “riders upon coursers of the king‘s stud, offspring of high-bred steeds.” So Esther 8:14.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/esther-8.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And he wrote in the King Ahasuerus' name, and sealed it with the king's ring,.... Which gave the letters authority, and made them irreversible, and for this Mordecai had the king's order, Esther 8:8

and sent letters by post; by runners or couriers:

on horseback; that rode on horses that were racers, that ran swiftly:

and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries; which were all different creatures, and swift ones, according to our version, especially the latter; see Jeremiah 2:23 which were a kind of camels, but swifter, and would go more than one hundred miles a dayF1Isidor. Origin. l. 12. c. 1. Vid. Strabo Geograph. l. 15. p. 498. ; and, as Diodorus Siculus saysF2Bibliothec. l. 19. p. 683. , not less than 1500 furlongs or about two hundred miles: though it may be only one sort are meant, namely, "mules", for the next word, "ahashteranim", in the Persian language signifies mulesF3Castell. Dictionar. Persic. col. 29. Hottinger. Smegma Oriental l. 1. c. 5. p. 75. , and so Aben Ezra interprets it, and likewise Kimchi and Ben Melech; and the last words may be rendered "sons of mares", so David de Pomis; that is, such mules as are gendered by he asses and mares: and so the same writer observes, that the word in the Arabic language signifies "mares"; and such mules that come from them he says are stronger than those that come from she asses; so that the whole may be rendered to this sense, "riders on mules", (which in the Persian language are called "ahashteranim",) namely, such as are "sons of mares"; and which according to AelianusF4De Animal. l. 16. c. 9. and PlinyF5Nat. Hist. l. 8. c. 44. are the swiftest; though the Persians had camels swifter than are common elsewhere, called "revatrie", the "goer", which trot as fast as an horse can gallopF6Universal History, vol. 5. p. 88. .

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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 Esther 8:10". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/esther-8.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

sent … by posts … and riders on … camels, and young dromedaries — The business being very urgent, the swiftest kind of camel would be employed, and so the word in the original denotes the wind-camel. Young dromedaries also are used to carry expresses, being remarkable for the nimbleness and ease of their movements. Animals of this description could convey the new rescript of Ahasuerus over the length and breadth of the Persian empire in time to relieve the unhappy Jews from the ban under which they lay.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/esther-8.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus' name, and sealed it with the king's ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries:

Riders — Which were not employed in sending the former letter: but this coming later required more care and speed, that the Jews might be eased from their present fears, and have time to provide for their own defence.

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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 Esther 8:10". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/esther-8.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Esther 8:10 And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus’ name, and sealed [it] with the king’s ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, [and] riders on mules, camels, [and] young dromedaries:

Ver. 10. And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus’s name] For he knew that "where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?" Ecclesiastes 8:4; see Daniel 5:19. Mordecai, as he was careful not to abuse his authority, so he spareth not to improve it to the utmost for the Church’s good. We may also lawfully and comfortably improve the benefits and privileges granted us by princes and other benefactors. Constantine’s donation and Peter’s patrimony is much boasted of by that antichrist of Rome. A mere fiction, as various learned men of their own side have proved (Cusanus, Ficinus, Volater, Otho Frising). But if it were never so true, what power had Constantine to give away and alienate such a considerable part of the empire (might he not well have been therefore called Pupillus, as he was in scorn by some heathen historians for his bounty to poor Christians)? or with what conscience could the bishop of Rome have accepted of such a gift, and left it to his successors. But it was neither so nor so. Not Constantine, but Pepin, enlarged the pope’s territories; as not Peter, but Phocas, is the right craggy rock upon which is founded the pope’s supremacy.

And sealed it with the king’s ring] See Esther 3:12, and observe what a strange turn of things here was all on the sudden. Merlin from this clause gathereth, that the king perused and approved whatsoever the scribes wrote by the appointment of Mordecai, he saw it, and signed it.

And sent letters by posts] See Esther 3:15. That was a witty speech of him, who said of secretaries that pretend much to Scripture: they were like posts, that bring truth in their letters and lies in their mouths. And of another, that they do angariare, make posts of the Holy Scriptures; compelling them to go two miles, which of themselves would go but one.

And riders on mules] Which are counted swifter than horses, and yet a horse is so swift a creature, that the Argives consecrated a horse to the sun, as the swiftest beast to the swiftest planet, Equitantes in equis angariis riding on the public couriers horse (Tremel.), O ταχιστος τω ταχυτατω.

Camels] These were large strong beasts, that could endure long and hard travel. It is said of them, that they do drink, in praesens et in posterum, for the present and the future, and can hold out travelling three days together without food.

And young dromedaries] These were also swift beasts, Jeremiah 2:23, and therefore it is by antiphrasis that among us a slow person is called a dromedary, Ut lucus a non lucendo, bellum quasi minime bellum.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/esther-8.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Esther 8:10. And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus' name, &c.— Josephus has given us a true copy, as he says, of this decree, or, as he terms it, of the letters which Artaxerxes sent to all the nations which lie between India and Ethiopia; wherein he represents the abuse which favourites are wont to make of their power and credit with their prince, by insulting their inferiors, flying in the face of those who raised them, and, to gratify their resentments, calumniating the innocent, and putting honest men in danger of their lives, &c. It is observable, that this decree allows the Jews to defend themselves, and therefore may, in some measure, account for the slaughter which they made of their enemies, as related in the next chapter; and, no doubt, the great sum which Haman had offered to gratify his revenge against the Jewish nation, was an additional provocation to them to slay every one who came to annoy them. But it should be remembered, that in this they acted by virtue of a royal edict, which authorized them to stand upon their own defence; that they were not the first aggressors, but only opposed those who openly assaulted them, and were for putting in execution an unjust and cruel decree against them; and as the Amalekites, who might be dispersed throughout the Persian dominions, were the known and inveterate enemies of the Jews, and, following now the fortune of Haman, might be forward enough to execute the decree which he had procured against them, it is reasonably presumed that most of those whom the Jews destroyed in their necessary defence, both at Shushan and in the provinces, were of that devoted nation, and that by this their slaughter the prophesies against Amalek were remarkably accomplished. See Bishop Patrick.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/esther-8.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Which were not employed in the sending of the former letter; but this coming later required more care and speed, that the Jews might be eased from the torment of their present fears, and have time to furnish themselves with necessaries for their own defence.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Esther 8:10". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/esther-8.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

10.Posts on horseback — See notes on Esther 1:22; Esther 3:13.

Riders on mules — Rather, on swift coursers. See note on 1 Kings 4:28. The word is here a collective.

Camels — The word אחשׁתרנים is of Persian origin, and means royal, or pertaining to the government. The most probable meaning is royal steeds. The word occurs only here and in Esther 8:14.

Young dromedaries — Hebrews sons of the rammachim. The word רמכים is found only here, and is of doubtful meaning. According to Gesenius and Furst, it means mares. But, as it has the masculine termination, others understand it to mean stallions. Rawlinson gives it the more general sense of highbred steeds. Perhaps the best version of all the words would be, riders of the swift coursers, the royal steeds, offspring of the thoroughbreds.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/esther-8.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Esther 8:10. And he wrote in King Ahasuerus’s name — Josephus has given us a true copy, as he says, of this decree; or, as he terms it, of the letters which Artaxerxes sent to all nations which lie between India and Ethiopia; wherein he represents the abuse which favourites are wont to make of their power and credit with their prince, by insulting their inferiors, by flying in the face of those who raised them, and, to gratify their resentments, calumniating the innocent, and putting honest men in danger of their lives, &c. And sent letters by posts, and riders on mules, &c. — Which were not employed in the sending of the former letters; but these, coming later, required more care and speed, that the Jews might be eased from their present fears, and have time to provide for their own defence.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/esther-8.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Posts, who had a right to make use of any person's horse, &c. (Menochius) --- Who. Protestants, "on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries." (Haydock) --- The original terms greatly embarrass interpreters. (Calmet) --- Septuagint have simply, "he sent the writings by letter-carriers, ordering them to follow their own laws in every city, to help themselves, and treat their adversaries and opponents as they pleased, on one day....the 13th....of Adar. This is a copy," &c., chap. xvi. (Haydock)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/esther-8.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

posts on horseback = couriers on horseback. Haman"s "posts" were runners on foot (Esther 3:13, Esther 3:15), hut speed was now essential. See Esther 9:1.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/esther-8.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus' name, and sealed it with the king's ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries:

Sent letters by posts on horseback, [ bacuwciym (Hebrew #5483)] - by horses.

And riders on mules, [ haarekesh (Hebrew #7409)] - the steeds or coursers of a fleeter race than the former (Bochart, 'Hierozoicon,' 1:, p. 95).

Camels, [ haa'

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

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(10) Posts.—The posts. Literally, the runners. (See Note on Esther 1:22.)

Riders on mules.—Rather, on horses of great speed; the “swift beast “of Micah 1:13.

Camels, and young dromedaries.—The words thus translated occur only here, and there is much doubt as to the meaning. It may suffice to mention two renderings :—(1) “Mules, the offspring of royal mares “—so Gesenius; or (2) we may connect the former word with the Persian word meaning royal—so Canon Rawlinson, who translates the whole clause, riders upon coursers of the king’s stud, offspring of high-bred steeds.”

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/esther-8.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus' name, and sealed it with the king's ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries:
in the king
1 Kings 21:8; Ecclesiastes 8:4; Daniel 4:1
by posts
3:13; 2 Chronicles 30:6; Job 9:25; Jeremiah 51:21
mules
Rechesh, in Syriac, rechesha, probably denotes a swift horse.
camels
Achashteranim, from the Persian akhash, large, and aster, a mule, probably, as Bochart supposes, denotes a large mule.
young dromedaries
Beney harammachim, "the sons of mares," as the word ramakat denotes in Arabic; probably an expletive of the preceeding word.
Isaiah 60:6; 66:20; Jeremiah 2:23
Reciprocal: Genesis 24:61 - they rode;  Genesis 41:42 - his ring;  1 Kings 4:28 - dromedaries;  1 Kings 10:25 - and mules;  2 Chronicles 30:10 - the posts;  Esther 3:12 - sealed;  Esther 9:29 - confirm;  Jeremiah 51:31 - post;  Daniel 6:8 - establish

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Esther 8:10". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/esther-8.html.