Ver. 1. Souls. The Egyptians, who were punished with horrible darkness, as they had followed an unjust, dark, and cruel policy against the Hebrews.
Ver. 2. Providence, and day-light, like incorrigible slaves, in prison. C.
--- The Egyptians were three days in darkness, (Ex. x. 22.) and the Gentiles continued without faith in God, till after Christ's resurrection. W.
--- Only few served him, before that glorious event.
Ver. 3. Sins. This interior darkness was punished with the exterior one. C.
--- Forgetfulness. Of each other, being concerned only for themselves, (H.) or they seemed to be forgotten by Providence, or buried in Lethean, most dismal obscurity. The interpreter thus mentions Cocytus, without sanctioning poetical fables. Job xxi. 33. M.
--- Exceeding. Greek, "spectres." C.
Ver. 6. Fire. Like lightning, which would not allow them leisure to distinguish objects. C.
Ver. 7. Rebuked. Or chastised. H.
--- The magicians could not imitate this miracle, nor secure themselves from its horrors. C.
Ver. 9. Fear. the Egyptians kept serpents in their houses, and fed them. But now, neglecting to shew this attention, they were affrighted with their hissing.
--- Air. Or could live. They seemed to wish for death, (C.) like the damned, but it fled from them. H.
Ver. 10. Things. The wicked are most cowardly. C.
--- "Crimes may be safe; they cannot be secure." Sen. ep. xcvii.
Ver. 11. Thought. And giving way to despair, when it is extreme.
Ver. 12. Expectation. Or fear. Such an one is filled with a mortal anxiety.
Ver. 14. Them. From the sight of spectres, and remorse of conscience.
Ver. 15. Irons. Darkness forced them to stay where they were. C.
Ver. 17. Birds. Nothing can afford comfort to the affrighted. M.