Then take silver and gold
Which the Jewish writers suppose were brought by the above men from their brethren in Babylon, as a free will offering towards the building of the temple: and make crowns;
two at least, one of silver, and another of gold; the one to be put upon the head of Joshua the high priest; the other upon the head of Zerubbabel, as Kimchi conjectures; though, according to the text, they seem to be both, or all of them, be they as many as they will, to be put upon the head of Joshua; and may signify the different states of the priesthood in the present time, and when in its pristine glory; or that both the crown of the priesthood and the crown of the kingdom should meet in his antitype Christ, who is said to have on his head many crowns, ( Revelation 19:12 ) . The Targum renders it, "thou shalt make a great crown"; as if only one crown was to be made of gold and silver mixed together; and so the Arabic version renders it; but more are certainly meant, for it follows: and set [them] upon the head of Joshua the son of Josedech the high
on whose head a fair mitre was set; see ( Zechariah 3:5 ) and with the mitre was wore by the high priest the holy crown, made of pure gold; and which was no other than the plate or "flower" of gold, on which was engraved "Holiness to the Lord", ( Exodus 28:36 ) ( 29:6 ) ( 39:30 ) and this, according to the Jewish writers F2, was a plate of gold two fingers broad, and reached from ear to ear; though Josephus F3 seems to give a different account of it; he says,
``the golden crown surrounds (either the mitre, or perhaps rather the forehead or temples); and on it were three rows of cups or flowers, like those of the herb we call "saccharus"; and the Grecian botanists "hyosciamus";''or henbane; and after describing the herb, and the figure of the buds, cups, or flowers of it, he adds,
``like to these is made a crown reaching from the hinder part of the head unto both temples; for the flowers do not encompass the forehead; but there is a golden plate, which has the name of God engraved in sacred letters;''which seems to disagree with the accounts of other Jewish writers; unless, as Braunius F4 observes, they may be thus reconciled, that the crown was nothing else but the plate that was two fingers broad, and was in length from ear to ear; so that about the temples it was ornamented with three rows of henbane flowers on each side: and these three rows may give occasion for the use of the word in the plural number; and some have called it a triple crown F5; and Popish writers fail not to improve it in favour of the crown their pontiff wears; and Lyra F6 speaks of little crowns or coronets, even in the mitres of the common priests; which (he says) were circles in the lower part of them so called; wherefore the rows of flowers in the high priest's crown, from whence it might be called (Uyu) , a flower, might with more propriety bear that name. Philo the Jew F7, speaking of the golden plate, says it was like a crown engraven with four letters of the name (Jehovah); and further observes, that
``the mitre under it kept the plate from touching the head, on which the "cidaris" or diadem was put; for it was like the cidaris which the eastern kings used for a diadem:''and indeed this crown, and the three rows of flowers in it, were a hieroglyphic or emblem of the threefold office of Christ, whom the high priest represented, kingly, priestly, and prophetic; and so may be fitly signified here by crowns in the plural number; and it is usual with the Jewish writers to speak of three crowns, the crown of the law, the crown of the kingdom, and the crown of the priesthood F8; and very probably from the high priest among the Jews wearing crowns it was that the priests among the Heathens had the same ornaments on their heads; and to be crowned was with them the same as to exercise the office of priesthood F9, and who was an eminent type of the Messiah, and in this of having crowns put upon his head, as the following words show.
F2 Maimon. Cele Hamikdash, c. 9. sect. 1. Jarchi in Exod. xxviii. 36.
F3 Antiqu. l. 3. c. 7. sect. 7.
F4 De Vestitu Sacerdot. Hebr. l. 2. c. 28. sect. 18. p. 807.
F5 Fortunatus Scacchus in Myrothec. l. 3. c. 40. p. 1000. Solerius de Pileo, sect. 13. p. 266.
F6 In Exod. xxxix. 27.
F7 De Vita Mosis, l. 3. p. 670, 671.
F8 Pirke Abot, c. 4. sect. 13.
F9 Paschalius de Coronis, l. 4. c. 13.