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1 These seven hundred wives, or the daughters of great men, and the three hundred concubines, the daughters of the ignoble, make one thousand in all; and are, I suppose, those very one thousand women intimated elsewhere by Solomon himself, when he speaks of his not having found one [good] woman among that very number, Ecclesiastes 7:28.
2 Josephus is here certainly too severe upon Solomon, who, in making the cherubims, and these twelve brazen oxen, seems to have done no more than imitate the patterns left him by David, which were all given David by Divine inspiration. See my description of the temples, ch. 10. And although God gave no direction for the lions that adorned his throne, yet does not Solomon seem therein to have broken any law of Moses; for although the Pharisees and latter Rabbins have extended the second commandment, to forbid the very making of any image, though without any intention to have it worshipped, yet do not I suppose that Solomon so understood it, nor that it ought to be so understood. The making any other altar for worship but that at the tabernacle was equally forbidden by Moses, Antiq. B. IV. ch. 8. sect. 5; yet did not the two tribes and a half offend when they made an altar for a memorial only, Joshua 22; Antiq. B. V. ch. 1. sect. 26, 27.
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