And she said unto her father, let this thing be done for me,
&c.] She had but one favour to ask of him, which she thought might be granted, without any breach of the vow:
let me alone two months
she desired such a space of time might be allowed her before the vow took place; and the rather she might be encouraged to expect that her request would be granted, since no time was fixed by the vow for the accomplishment of it, and since the time she asked was not very long, and the end to be answered not unreasonable
that I may go up and down upon the mountains;
or, "ascend upon the mountains" F8; Jepthah's house in Mizpeh being higher than the mountains; or there might be, as Kimchi and Ben Melech note, a valley between that and the mountains, to which she descended in order to go up to the mountains; see ( Judges 9:25 ) these she chose to make her abode, and take her walks in, during the time she asked, as being most fit for retirement and solitude; where she might give up herself to meditation and prayer, and conversation with her fellow virgins she would take with her, and so be wrought up to a greater degree of resignation and submission to her father's will, and to the will of God in it, as she might suppose:
and bewail my virginity, I and my fellows;
the virgins her companions; this she proposed to be the subject that she and her associates would dwell upon, during this time of solitude; and the rather, as this may be thought to be the thing contained in the vow, that as she was a virgin, so she should continue; by which means she would not be the happy instrument of increasing the number of the children of Israel, nor of being the progenitor of the Messiah; upon which accounts it was reckoned in those times to be very grievous and reproachful to live and die without issue, and so matter of lamentation and weeping.
F8 (Myrhh le ytdryw) "et descendam super montes", Pagninus, Montanus; "descendamque ad montes", Tigurine version.