And when Eli heard the noise of the crying
The shrieks of the men and women, which were very clamorous and terrible. Eli had his hearing, though not his sight; he could not see the distress in their countenances, but he heard the lamentations they made:
and said, what meaneth the noise of this tumult?
it seems the people ran about, wringing their hands, and making doleful shrieks; the noise of which Eli heard, and the meaning of which he inquired after, or what should be the cause of it:
and the man came in hastily, and told Eli;
or made haste, and came to him, and related all that is later expressed; for Eli was not in any house, but on a seat by the way side, and therefore could not be said to come "in" to him; but he came to him, where he was, being brought by some of the citizens Eli had inquired of what should be the meaning of this noise; and therefore without delay the man was hastened to give the whole account unto him, as it was highly proper he should, being the supreme magistrate.