Thus ( οὕτως )
After this manner.
In the vision ( ἐν τῇ ὁπάσει )
Or “in my vision.” See on Acts 2:17. The reference to sight may be inserted because of I heard in Revelation 9:16.
Of fire ( πυρίνους )
Rev., “as of fire.” Fiery red.
Of jacinth ( ὑακινθίνους )
Ὑάκινθος hyacinthis the name of a flower and also of a precious stone. The noun occurs only Revelation 21:20, and the adjective only here. According to classical mythology, the flower sprang up from the blood of Hyacinthus, a beautiful Spartan youth, who was accidentally killed during a game of quoits. It was thought by some that the letters AI, AI, the exclamation of woe, could be traced on the petals, while others discovered the letter Υ ,the initial letter of Ὑάκινθος . The story of the slaying of Hyacinthus is told by Ovid.
“Lo, the blood
Which, on the ground outpoured, had stained the sod,
Is blood no more. Brighter than Tyrian dye,
Like to the lily's shape a flower appears,
Purple in hue as that is silvery white.
Nor yet does such memorial content
Phoebus Apollo at whose word it rose.
Upon its leaves he writes his own laments,
And on the flower forever stands inscribed
“Metamorphoses,” x., 175 sqq.
As a stone, it is identified by some with the sapphire. As to color, the hyacinth of the Greeks seems to have comprehended the iris, gladiolus, and larkspur. Hence the different accounts of its color in classical writings, varying from red to black. A dull, dark blue seems to be meant here.
Of brimstone ( θειώδεις )
Perhaps light yellow, such a color as would be produced by the settling fumes of brimstone.
Of the horses
In the Bible the horse is always referred to in connection with war, except Isaiah 28:28, where it is mentioned as employed in threshing, the horses being turned loose in the grain as in the Italian triglia. The magnificent description in Job 39:19-25applies to the war-horse. He is distinguished not so much for his speed and utility as for his strength (see Psalms 33:17; Psalms 147:10), and the word abbir strong is used as an equivalent for a horse (Jeremiah 8:16; Jeremiah 47:3). The Hebrews as a pastoral race, did not need the horse; and, for a long time after their settlement in Canaan, dispensed with it, partly because of the hilly nature of the country, which allowed the use of chariots only in certain places (Judges 1:19), and partly because of the prohibition in Deuteronomy 17:16. Accordingly they hamstrung the horses of the Canaanites (Joshua 11:6, Joshua 11:9). The great supply of horses was effected by Solomon through his connection with Egypt. See 1 Kings 4:26.
Proceedeth fire and smoke
“Then, if the sound of arms he hear from far,
Quiet he cannot stand, but pricks his ears,
Trembles in every limb, and snorting, rolls
The gathered fire beneath his nostrils wide”
“Georgics,” iii, 83-85.
Also Job 39:20: “the glory of his nostrils is terrible.”