The royal residence of a sovereign; sometimes the spacious and stately dwelling of a prince or a powerful man of wealth. (Da 4:4; Lu 11:21; see GOVERNOR’S PALACE.) One Hebrew word for palace, heh·khalʹ, often was applied to the temple as the dwelling place of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah. (1Sa 1:9; 1Ki 6:3; Ezr 5:14; Da 5:3) Ancient palaces were frequently castlelike fortresses with battlement walls and massive gates. (Ne 1:1; Es 1:2) The customary spacious courtyards and luxurious private gardens gave regal splendor and beauty to palace grounds.—Es 1:5.
The Bible mentions the palaces of Assyria (Na 1:1; 2:6), Babylon (2Ki 20:18; 2Ch 36:7; Isa 39:7; Da 1:4; 5:5), and Persia (Ezr 4:14; Es 7:7, 8). Those in Babylon were described as “palaces of exquisite delight.” (Isa 13:22) One of the grandest palaces of the ancient world was built by Solomon, as is indicated by the impression it made on the queen of Sheba.—1Ki 10:4, 5.
Solomon’s palace, erected on Mount Moriah south of the temple, was just one of a number of government structures in this area that, all together, took some 13 years to build. Included in this royal complex of buildings were the House of the Forest of Lebanon, the Porch of Pillars, and the Porch of the Throne. There was also a special house for Pharaoh’s daughter, one of Solomon’s many wives, besides the king’s palace.—1Ki 7:1-8.
The description we have of Solomon’s palace is very meager compared with the details of the palatial temple. But the size of the foundation stones indicates that the palace must have been an impressive structure. In length these stones measured eight cubits (3.6 m; 11.7 ft) and ten cubits (4.5 m; 14.6 ft), and they must have been of proportionate size in their width and thickness, weighing many tons. The walls consisted of costly stones carefully sawed to measured specifications on both inside and outside surfaces.—1Ki 7:9-11; compare Ps 144:12.
The psalmist, in the 45th psalm, may have had in mind the decorations and furnishings of Solomon’s palace when he made reference to “the grand ivory palace.” The apostle Paul applies the words of this psalm to Jesus Christ the heavenly King.—Ps 45:8, 15; compare Ps 45:6, 7 with Heb 1:8, 9; Lu 4:18, 21.