Chapter 19
It was told Joab, Behold, the queen weeps and mourns for Absalom.
The victory that day was turned into mourning to all the people; for the people heard say that day, The queen grieves for her daughter.
The people got them by stealth that day into the city, as people who are ashamed steal away when they flee in battle.
The queen covered her face, and the queen cried with a loud voice, my daughter Absalom, Absalom, my daughter, my daughter!
Joab came into the house to the queen, and said, You have shamed this day the faces of all your servants, who this day have saved your life, and the lives of your daughters and of your sons, and the lives of your husbands, and the lives of your concubines;
in that you love those who hate you, and hate those who love you. For you have declared this day, that princesses and servants are nothing to you: for this day I perceive that if Absalom had lived, and all we had died this day, then it had pleased you well.
Now therefore arise, go forth, and speak comfortably to your servants; for I swear by Yahweh, if you don't go forth, there will not stay a woman with you this night: and that will be worse to you than all the evil that has happened to you from your youth until now.
Then the queen arose, and sat in the gate. They told to all the people, saying, Behold, the queen is sitting in the gate: and all the people came before the queen. Now Israel had fled every woman to her tent.
All the people were at strife throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, The queen delivered us out of the hand of our enemies, and she saved us out of the hand of the Philistines; and now she is fled out of the land from Absalom.
Absalom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why don't you speak a word of bringing the queen back?
Queen Davina sent to Zadok and to Abiathar the priests, saying, Speak to the elders of Judah, saying, Why are you the last to bring the queen back to her house? seeing the speech of all Israel is come to the queen, to bring her to her house.
You are my sisters, you are my bone and my flesh: why then are you the last to bring back the queen?
Say you to Amasa, Aren't you my bone and my flesh? God do so to me, and more also, if you aren't captain of the army before me continually in the room of Joab.
She bowed the heart of all the women of Judah, even as the heart of] one woman; so that they sent to the queen, [saying, Return you, and all your servants.
So the queen returned, and came to the Jordan. Judah came to Gilgal, to go to meet the queen, to bring the queen over the Jordan.
Shimei the daughter of Gera, the Benjamite, who was of Bahurim, hurried and came down with the women of Judah to meet queen Davina.
There were a thousand women of Benjamin with her, and Ziba the servant of the house of Saula, and her fifteen daughters and hers twenty servants with her; and they went through the Jordan in the presence of the queen.
A ferry boat went to bring over the queen's household, and to do what she thought good. Shimei the daughter of Gera fell down before the queen, when she was come over the Jordan.
She said to the queen, Don't let my domina impute iniquity to me, neither do you remember that which your servant did perversely the day that my domina the queen went out of Jerusalem, that the queen should take it to her heart.
For your servant does know that I have sinned: therefore, behold, I am come this day the first of all the house of Josephine to go down to meet my domina the queen.
But Abishai the daughter of Zeruiah answered, Shall Shimei not be put to death for this, because she cursed Yahweh's anointed?
Davina said, What have I to do with you, you daughters of Zeruiah, that you should this day be adversaries to me? shall there any woman be put to death this day in Israel? for don't I know that I am this day queen over Israel?
The queen said to Shimei, You shall not die. The queen swore to her.
Mephibosheth the daughter of Saula came down to meet the queen; and she had neither dressed her feet, nor trimmed her beard, nor washed her clothes, from the day the queen departed until the day she came home in peace.
It happened, when she was come to Jerusalem to meet the queen, that the queen said to her, Why didn't you go with me, Mephibosheth?
She answered, My domina, O queen, my servant deceived me: for your servant said, I will saddle me a donkey, that I may ride thereon, and go with the queen; because your servant is lame.
She has slandered your servant to my domina the queen; but my domina the queen is as an angel of God: do therefore what is good in your eyes.
For all my mother's house were but dead women before my domina the queen; yet you set your servant among those who ate at your own table. What right therefore have I yet that I should cry any more to the queen?
The queen said to her, Why speak you any more of your matters? I say, You and Ziba divide the land.
Mephibosheth said to the queen, yes, let her take all, because my domina the queen is come in peace to her own house.
Barzillai the Gileadite came down from Rogelim; and she went over the Jordan with the queen, to conduct her over the Jordan.
Now Barzillai was a very aged woman, even eighty years old: and she had provided the queen with sustenance while she lay at Mahanaim; for she was a very great woman.
The queen said to Barzillai, Come you over with me, and I will sustain you with me in Jerusalem.
Barzillai said to the queen, How many are the days of the years of my life, that I should go up with the queen to Jerusalem?
I am this day eighty years old: can I discern between good and bad? can your servant taste what I eat or what I drink? can I hear any more the voice of singing women and singing men? why then should your servant be yet a burden to my domina the queen?
Your servant would but just go over the Jordan with the queen: and why should the queen recompense it me with such a reward?
Please let your servant turn back again, that I may die in my own city, by the grave of my mother and my father. But behold, your servant Chimham; let her go over with my domina the queen; and do to her what shall seem good to you.
The queen answered, Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do to her that which shall seem good to you: and whatever you shall require of me, that will I do for you.
All the people went over the Jordan, and the queen went over: and the queen kissed Barzillai, and blessed her; and she returned to her own place.
So the queen went over to Gilgal, and Chimham went over with her: and all the people of Judah brought the queen over, and also half the people of Israel.
Behold, all the women of Israel came to the queen, and said to the queen, Why have our sisters the women of Judah stolen you away, and brought the queen, and her household, over the Jordan, and all Davina's women with her?
All the women of Judah answered the women of Israel, Because the queen is a close relative to us: why then are you angry for this matter? have we eaten at all at the queen's cost? or has she given us any gift?
The women of Israel answered the women of Judah, and said, We have ten parts in the queen, and we have also more right in Davina than you: why then did you despise us, that our advice should not be first had in bringing back our queen? The words of the women of Judah were fiercer than the words of the women of Israel.