2 Samuel 10:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
So Hanun seized David's envoys, shaved off half of each man's beard, cut off their garments at the buttocks, and sent them away.

King James Bible
Wherefore Hanun took David's servants, and shaved off the one half of their beards, and cut off their garments in the middle, even to their buttocks, and sent them away.

Darby Bible Translation
And Hanun took David's servants, and had the one half of their beards shaved off, and their raiment cut off in the midst, as far as their buttocks, and sent them away.

World English Bible
So Hanun took David's servants, and shaved off the one half of their beards, and cut off their garments in the middle, even to their buttocks, and sent them away.

Young's Literal Translation
And Hanun taketh the servants of David, and shaveth off the half of their beard, and cutteth off their long robes in the midst -- unto their buttocks, and sendeth them away;

2 Samuel 10:4 Parallel
Commentary
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

Shaved off the one half of their beards - The beard is held in high respect in the East: the possessor considers it his greatest ornament; often swears by it; and, in matters of great importance, pledges it. Nothing can be more secure than a pledge of this kind; its owner will redeem it at the hazard of his life. The beard was never cut off but in mourning, or as a sign of slavery. Cutting off half of the beard and the clothes rendered the men ridiculous, and made them look like slaves: what was done to these men was an accumulation of insult.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

and shaved The {beard} is held in high respect and greatly valued in the East: the possessor considers it as his greatest ornament; often swears by it, and, in matters of great importance, {pledges} it; and nothing can be more secure than such a pledge, for its owner will redeem it at the hazard of his life. The beard was never cut off but in {mourning}, or as a sign of {slavery.} It is customary to shave the Ottoman princes, as a mark of their subjection to the reigning emperor. The beard is a mark of authority and liberty among the Mohammedans. The Persians who clip the beard, and shave above the jaw, are reputed heretics. They who serve in the seraglios have their beards shaven, as a sign of servitude; nor do they suffer them to grow till the sultan has set them at liberty. Among the Arabians, it is more infamous for anyone to appear with his beard cut off, than among us to be publicly whipped or branded; and many would prefer death to such a punishment.

Leviticus 19:27 You shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shall you mar the corners of your beard.

1 Chronicles 19:3,4 But the princes of the children of Ammon said to Hanun, Think you that David does honor your father, that he has sent comforters to you...

Psalm 109:4,5 For my love they are my adversaries: but I give myself to prayer...

Isaiah 15:2 He is gone up to Bajith, and to Dibon, the high places, to weep: Moab shall howl over Nebo, and over Medeba...

cut off

Isaiah 20:4 So shall the king of Assyria lead away the Egyptians prisoners, and the Ethiopians captives, young and old, naked and barefoot...

Isaiah 47:2,3 Take the millstones, and grind meal: uncover your locks, make bore the leg, uncover the thigh, pass over the rivers...

Jeremiah 41:5 That there came certain from Shechem, from Shiloh, and from Samaria, even fourscore men, having their beards shaven...

Library
'More than Conquerors through Him'
'And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array at the entering in of the gate: and the Syrians of Zoba, and of Rehob, and Ish-tob, and Maacah, were by themselves in the field. 9. When Joab saw that the front of the battle was against him before and behind, he chose of all the choice men of Israel, and put them in array against the Syrians: 10. And the rest of the people he delivered into the hand of Abishai his brother, that he might put them in array against the children of Ammon.
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Samuel
Alike from the literary and the historical point of view, the book[1] of Samuel stands midway between the book of Judges and the book of Kings. As we have already seen, the Deuteronomic book of Judges in all probability ran into Samuel and ended in ch. xii.; while the story of David, begun in Samuel, embraces the first two chapters of the first book of Kings. The book of Samuel is not very happily named, as much of it is devoted to Saul and the greater part to David; yet it is not altogether inappropriate,
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

Cross References
2 Samuel 10:5
When David was told about this, he sent messengers to meet the men, for they were greatly humiliated. The king said, "Stay at Jericho till your beards have grown, and then come back."

Isaiah 15:2
Dibon goes up to its temple, to its high places to weep; Moab wails over Nebo and Medeba. Every head is shaved and every beard cut off.

Isaiah 20:4
so the king of Assyria will lead away stripped and barefoot the Egyptian captives and Cushite exiles, young and old, with buttocks bared--to Egypt's shame.

Jeremiah 41:5
eighty men who had shaved off their beards, torn their clothes and cut themselves came from Shechem, Shiloh and Samaria, bringing grain offerings and incense with them to the house of the LORD.

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