and that followed him; which were perhaps those that came from Jericho, and other parts;
cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: by calling Jesus the Son of David, they owned and proclaimed him to be the Messiah; this being the usual title by which the Messiah was known among the Jews; see the note on Matthew 1:1 and by crying and saying Hosanna to him, which was done with loud acclamations, and the united shouts of both companies, before and behind; they ascribe all praise, honour, glory, and blessing to him, and wish him all prosperity, happiness, and safety. The word is an Hebrew word, and is compounded of and which signifies, "save I beseech"; and which words stand in Psalm 118:25 to which the multitude had reference, as appears from what follows; and are formed into one word, "Hosana", or "Hosanna", in which form it frequently appears in the Jewish writings; and because of the often use of it at the feast of tabernacles, that feast was called "Hosanna", and the seventh day of it was called "the great Hosanna" (d). Moreover, the "Lulabs", or the bundles made of branches of palm trees, and boughs of willow and myrtle, which they carried in their hands at the feast of tabernacles, often go by this name: it is said (e),
"the Egyptian myrtle is right or fit "for the Hosanna".''
That is, to be put into the "Lulab", or bundle of boughs and branches, which was carried about, and shaken at the above feast. Again (f),
"it is a tradition of R. Meir, that it was the practice of the honourable men of Jerusalem, to bind their "Lulabs" with golden threads says Rabbah, these are they , "that bind the Hosanna": the gloss on it is, "that bind the Lulabs", of the house of the head of the captivity; for in binding the Hosanna of the house of the head of the captivity, they leave in it an hand's breadth and says the same Rabbah, a man may not hold an Hosanna in a linen cloth.''
Once more (g),
"says R. Zera, a man may not prepare "an Hosanna" for a child, on a good day.''
Sometimes the Hosanna seems to be distinguished from the "Lulab", and then by the "Lulab" is meant, only the branches of palm tree; and by the Hosanna, the boughs of willow and myrtle; as when (h),
"Rabbah says, a man may not fix the "Lulab", "in the Hosanna".''
And a little after says the same,
"a man may not bind the "Lulab" with the "Hosanna".''
Now these bundles might be so called, because they were lifted up and shaken, when the above words out of Psalm 118:25 were recited: for thus it is said (i),
"when do they shake, that is, their "Lulabs", or "Hosannas?" At those words, "O give thanks unto the Lord", Psalm 118:1 the beginning and end; and at those words, "Save now I beseech thee", Psalm 118:25. The house of Hillell, and the house of Shammai say also at those words, "O Lord I beseech thee, send now prosperity": says R. Akiba, I have observed Rabban Gamaliel and Rabbi Joshua, that all the people shook their Lulabs, but they did not shake, only at those words, Save now I beseech thee, O Lord.''