And [the soul of] King David longed to go forth unto Absalom,
&c.] In like manner it is supplied and paraphrased in the Targum, because the word rendered "longed" is feminine; though it may be used to denote the effeminateness of David's disposition and carriage on this occasion. Aben Ezra thinks the word "wife", should be supplied, and then the sense is, that the wife of King David, the mother of Absalom, made supplication to him to send forth one of the young men to fetch Absalom, and that by her importunity to him she stirred up a longing desire in David after him. Abarbinel observes, from another writer of theirs, that all the three years David was mourning for his son, he went out continually to seek to take vengeance on Absalom; but after that time, the mother of Absalom, or Tamar his sister, or his daughter, was importunate with the king, and restrained him from going forth to seek vengeance on Absalom; and when he was comforted concerning Amnon, that woman found means to restrain him from going out, and he restrained his servants from going forth against Absalom; and so he observes the word is used for withholding or restraining in ( Psalms 40:10 ) ; and this agrees with several ancient versions, as the Vulgate Latin,
``King David ceased to persecute Absalom;''and the Septuagint,
``King David ceased to go out to Absalom;''and the Syriac version,
``and King David abstained from going out after Absalom:''for he was comforted concerning Amnon, seeing he was dead;
and could not be brought back from the grave, though Absalom might be from his exile, to which he had an inclination; but he knew not how to do it, consistent with justice and his own honour.