Order of Contents
. 1500’s 3
. 1600’s 4
. Intermediate 4
. Advanced 3
A Poetical Commentary 1
Early Church 1
Medieval Church 1
On Many of the Proverbs 2
Chapters in Proverbs
Topical Arrangements 10
Collections of Secular Proverbs 2
The Best Commentaries on Proverbs
Arnot, William – Laws from Heaven for Life on Earth; Illustrations of the Book of Proverbs 1873, 1st ed. 1858
Arnot was of the Free Church of Scotland.
*** – “We wish Dr. Arnot had gone steadily through the whole book, for his mind was of an order peculiarly adapted for such a task. Those passages which he dilates upon are set in a clear and beautiful light. For a happy blending of illustrative faculty, practical sound sense, and spirituality, Dr. Arnot was almost unrivalled.” – Spurgeon
‘Perceptive studies of selected verses in the Book of Proverbs.’ – Cyril J. Barber
Bridges, Charles – An Exposition of the Book of Proverbs 1850
*** – “The best work on the Proverbs. The Scriptural method of exposition so well carried out by Bridges renders all his writings very suggestive to ministers. While explaining the passage in hand, he sets other portions of the Word in new lights.” – Spurgeon
‘First published in 1846, this work has become a classic of Protestantism. Rich in thought and valued for its exposition. Provides valuable material for the preacher.’ – Cyril J. Barber
Lange’s Commentary – Proverbs by Otto Zockler
*** – ‘We cannot say that we admire Zockler’s interpretation of the Song of Solomon. The volume contains much that we do not like, but its value is considerable. It is a pity that the value of the volumes in this series varies so much.’ – Spurgeon
Lawson (1749–1820) was a minister in the Seceder Church of Scotland (Burgher), who followed John Brown of Haddington in the professorial chair of theology.
** – “A thoroughly sound and useful commentary. Lawson wrote popularly and vigorously.” – Spurgeon
*** – “Wardlaw is diffuse, and his views upon ‘wisdom’ are peculiar; but he always repays the reader, and neither Bridges no Arnot have rendered him obsolete, for he works a different vein, and expounds in a manner peculiar to himself.”
Kidner, Derek – The Proverbs Buy 1964 in Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries
Keil & Delitzsch – Commentary on Proverbs
Keil and Delitzsch are the best on academic, grammarian analysis, but are as spiritually satisfying as quenching your thirst on saltine crackers.
** – Spurgeon
Stuart, Moses – Commentary on Proverbs 1852
** “We have not met with any English reprint of this useful volume. Dr. Stuart purposely adapted his work to beginners in Hebrew study. He has set himself to prepare a commentary of explanation only, believing that a hortatory and practical comment ever minister ought to be able to make for himself. Stuart’s introductory matter is highly instructive, though no reader should blindly accept it all.” – Spurgeon
More Commentaries on Proverbs
Cope, Michael – A Godly and Learned Exposition upon the Proverbs of Solomon 1580
Cope was a minister in Geneva.
Muffett, Peter – A Commentary on the Whole Book of Proverbs 2nd ed. 1594
** – “Homely, but not very striking. Mr. Nichol’s choice of commentators for reprinting was not a wise one.”
Wilcox, Thomas – A Short, yet Sound Commentary Written on that Worthy Work Called the Proverbs of Solomon 1589
Wilcox (c.1549-1608) was a reformed puritan.
** ‘Very old. the notes are brief, but furnish many hints for sermons.’ ‘Wilcocks briefly sums up the teaching of the verses, and so aids in suggesting topics; in other respects he is rather wearying.’ – Spurgeon
Blair, Robert – [On Proverbs, but Title Unknown] †1666
This work was part of the Scottish divines’ project to produce popular commentaries on difficult books of the Bible, which series included the authors: David Dickson, Alexander Nisbet, George Hutcheson and James Fergusson. Blair finished this work in manuscript, but it was never published.
Dod, John & Cleaver, Robert – A Brief Explanation of the Whole Book of the Proverbs of Solomon (1616) This is the same work as the commentaries on chapters of Proverbs listed at EEBO under John Dod.
** – “Both Dod and Cleaver were popular as preachers, and their joint works were widely circulated. This book can rarely be met with entire.” – Spurgeon
Jackson, Arthur – Annotations upon Job, the Psalms, the Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Song of Solomon 1658
“In 1653, Arthur Jackson, Preacher of God’s Word in Wood Street, London, issued four volumes upon the Old Testament, which appear to have been the result of his pulpit expositions to his people. Valuable his works would be if there were no better, but they are not comparable to others already and afterwards mentioned. You can do without him, but he is a reputable author.” – Spurgeon
Jermin, Michael – Paraphrastical Meditations upon the Book of Proverbs 1638
Jermin (1590-1659) was a Reformed Anglican.
** – “Very antique and full of Latin quotations. Jermin does not err in excessive spirituality, but the reverse. Those who can put up with his style will be repaid by his quaint learning.” – Spurgeon
** ‘Good, brief notes. Antique, but still prized.’ – Spurgeon
Beginner and Simple
Dalrymple, William – Solomon’s Ethics, or the Book of Proverbs Made Easy, a School Book, and Seasonable Present for the Youth 1799
Dalyrmple (1723-1814) was a Scottish religious writer, minister and moderator of the Church of Scotland.
French, W. & Skinner, G. – A New Translation of the Proverbs of Solomon from the Original Hebrew, with Explanatory Notes 1831
** “These translators endeavor to produce faithful renderings of the text, giving to each word the same sense in all places. They are calm, dispassionate, judicious, and able.” – Spurgeon
Nicholls, Benjamin Elliott – The Book of Proverbs, Explained and Illustrated from Holy Scripture 1858
** “Contains very sensible suggestions for the interpretation of proverbs, and gives instances of explanations by geography, natural history, etc. It is a somewhat helpful work.” – Spurgeon
** “Of Noyes upon Ecclesiastes, Dr. Hamilton says: ‘This interpretation is clear and straightforward, but the American Professor gives to the book an air of theological tenuity and mere worldly wisdom which carries neither our conviction nor our sympathy.’ Noyes is a good literary expositor, but his theological views render him a very poverty-stricken commentator from a spiritual point of view.” – Spurgeon
Thomas, David – The Practical Philosopher: a A Daily Monitor for Business Men 1873
** “Dr. Thomas of the ‘Homilist’ is a well-known writer, and a man capable of great things. This work does not equal his ‘Genius of the Gospel’. It contains a large amount of practical comment, written in a rather grandiose style. We can hardly fancy men of business reading this book from day to day as the author proposes.” – Spurgeon
Dimock, Henry – Notes Critical and Explanatory on the Books of Psalms and Proverbs, intended to correct the grammatical errors of the text from the collations of the mss. by D. Kennicott on the Psalms and by him and De Rossi on the Proverbs 1791
* “The notes mainly concern the various readings, and exhibit considerable learning; but we do not think much of a homiletical kind can be got out of them.” – Spurgeon
Durell, David – Critical remarks on the books of Job, Proverbs, Psalms, Ecclesiastes, and Canticles 1772
Durell (1728–1775) was an Anglican O.T. scholar.
Holden, George – An Attempt Towards an Improved Translation of the Proverbs of Solomon from the Original Hebrew with Notes, critical and explanatory, and a preliminary dissertation 1819 418 pp. The commentary starts on p. 83.
Holden (1783-1865) was an orthodox Anglican.
A Poetical Commentary on the Proverbs
Day, William – A Poetical Commentary on Proverbs 1862
* “The author says, he has ‘a taste for building rhymes,’ and has here gratified it. That is all we can say for his book.” – Spurgeon
The Early Church on Proverbs
ed. Wright, J. Robert – Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture: Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon Buy
A Medieval Commentary on Proverbs 31
St. Albert the Great – The Valiant Woman: A Medieval Commentary on Prov. 31:10-31 Buy
A Jewish Commentary on Proverbs
Greenstone, Julius Hillet – Proverbs: with Commentary Buy 1950
On Many of the Proverbs
Hunt, Thomas – Observations on Several Passages in the Book of Proverbs 1775
Hunt was an Anglican and Oxford scholar.
Jacox, Francis – Scripture Proverbs, Illustrated, Annotated, and Applied 1874
** “This work illustrates many of the proverbs scattered throughout the Scriptures, and some of those collected by Solomon. Mr. Jacox seems to have read everything good and bad, and hence he pours forth a medley of fact and fiction more entertaining than edifying. He reminds us of the elder Disraeli and his ‘Curiosities of Literature’.” – Spurgeon
Taylor, Francis – An Exposition with Practical Observations upon the Three First Chapters of the Proverbs 1645 An Exposition upon chs. 4-9 1657
Taylor was a Westminster divine.
*** – “Two volumes (in one) of rich, old fashioned Puritan divinity.” – Spurgeon
Hammond, Henry – A Paraphrase and Annotations upon the Psalms, as also upon the Ten First Chapters of the) Proverbs 1684 d. 1660
Hammond was an Arminian, Latitudinarian Anglican. Matthew Henry was able to quote from Hammond throughout his commentary.
** – “Much esteemed, and deservedly so. Hammond’s weighty tome is somewhat dry, and many of his remarks are rather those of a linguist than of a divine, but he touches on many matters which others omit, and is, upon the whole, an expositor of singular merit.” – Spurgeon
Dod, John & William Hinde – Bathsheba’s Instructions to her Son Lemuel, containing a Fruitful and Plain Exposition of the Last Chapter of the Proverbs, Describing the Duties of a Great Man, and the Virtues of a Gracious Woman (London, 1614)
Topical Arrangements of the Proverbs
Hall, Joseph – Salomon’s Divine Arts, of: 1. Ethics, 2. Politics, 3. Economics that is; the government of: 1. Behavior, 2. Commonwealth, 3. Family. Drawn into method, out of his Proverbs & Ecclesiastes. With an Open and Plain Paraphrase upon the Song of Songs 1609
Hopkins, Louisa – Lessons on the Book of Proverbs, Topically Arranged, forming a System of Practical Ethics… 1843 110 pp.
Brooks, J.W. – A New Arrangement of the Proverbs of Solomon, classified according to the subject of each; together with critical and explanatory remarks, various readings, etc. 1860
* “We do not see the use of the arrangement; but those who want the Proverbs classified have the work done for them here.” – Spurgeon
Stock, John – Inspired Ethics, being a Revised Translation and Topical Arrangement of the Entire Book of Proverbs 1877 75 pp.
Wightman, F.A. – Golden Words from the Book of Wisdom 1918
Voorwinde, Stephen – Wisdom for Today’s Issues: A Topical Arrangement for Today’s Issues Buy 1996
Clarke, Thomas – A Topical Treasury of Proverbs Buy 2013 336 pp.
Davis, Sr., DeWayne – Topical Book of Proverbs: Wisdom at Your Fingertips Buy 2010 210 pp.
Dunigan, Jack – Solomon’s Advice: A Topical Guide to the Book Of Proverbs for Pastors, Parents, Counselors, and Students of Human Behavior Buy 2011 160 pp.
Decker, Barbara – Proverbs for Parenting: a Topical Guide for Child Raising from the Book of Proverbs Buy 1989
Collections of Secular Proverbs
Shearer, William – Gems of Wisdom from Bible, Literature and Proverbs, Arranged Topically for Moral Lessons in School and Home 1904 280 pp.