The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the
Chaldeans, and the soothsayers
Or, "with strength" F14; with a strong voice, as loud as he could; which is expressive of the fright he was in, and of his eagerness and impatience of information; laying aside all decency, and forgetting his royal majesty, like a man out of his senses, quite distracted, as it were: of the "astrologers" (See Gill on Daniel 1:20), (See Gill on Daniel 2:2), this was the usual course the kings of Babylon took, when they had matters of difficulty upon them, as appears from ( Daniel 2:2 ) ( Daniel 4:6 Daniel 4:7 ) and though they found it oftentimes fruitless and vain, yet still they pursued it; so besotted and addicted were they to this kind of superstition: and the king spake and said to the wise men of Babylon;
who were presently brought in from the several parts of the city where they dwelt, and probably many of them might be at court at that time; and being introduced into the hall where the king and his nobles were, he addressed them in the following manner; whosoever shall read this writing, and show me the interpretation
pointing to the writing upon the wall, which continued; and which neither the king nor any about him could read or interpret, and therefore both are required to be done: he shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his
or "with purple" F15; the colour wore by persons of rank and figure; and the chain of gold was an emblem of honour and dignity, and more to be regarded for that than for the value of the gold of which it was made: and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom;
not rule over the third part of the kingdom, as Aben Ezra; but be the third man in the kingdom; next to the king and the queen mother, or to the king and the heir apparent; or one of the third principal rulers; or one of the three presidents of the kingdom, as Daniel afterwards was.
F14 (lyxb) "cum virtute", Vatablus; "in virtute", Montanus; "fortiter", Cocceius; "cum robore", Michaelis.
F15 (anwgra) "purpura", Vatablus, Pagninus; Montanus; Grotius, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Michaelis.