Verse 14. Make haste, my beloved - These appear to be the words of the bride giving permission, but entreating him to speed his return. What these mountains of spices were, we cannot particularly tell; but they must have been thus named from their producing the trees on which the spices grew.
They might have been the same as the mountains of Bether, chap. ii. 17, or the mountains of myrrh, chap. iv. 6; where see the notes.
Here ends the seventh night of the marriage week.
Thus ends this most singular book; the oldest pastoral in the world, if it may be ranked among this species of writing. To whatever species of composition it belongs, it is, beyond all controversy, the finest, the most sublime for imagery and colouring, that ever came from the pen of man.
In the preceding notes I have carefully avoided all attempts to spiritualize this song. My reasons I have already given in the introduction; and in the course of writing these short notes I have seen no cause to alter my opinion. Any man may allegorize it; that is an easy matter; for when he once considers it to be an allegory, his own creed will furnish him with enough to say, write, or preach, upon the spiritual meanings of every part, which will be an exhibition of his own confession of faith! But when he has finished his work, the question will recur, By what authority do you give it these meanings? And till the day of judgment none shall be able to say, "I have the authority of God for my exposition."
Number of verses in Canticles, 117. Middle verse chap. iv. 14.