kwen: The Bible applies this term: (1) To the wife of a king ("queen consort") (malkah). In the Book of Esther it is the title given to Vashti (1:9) and Esther (2:22); compare Song 6:8 f. Another Hebrew word for queen consort is gebhirah, literally "mistress" (compare 1Ki 11:19, the wife of Pharaoh; 2Ki 10:13, "the children of the king and the children of the queen"). In Ne 2:6 and Ps 45:9 we find the expression sheghal, which some trace back to shaghal, "to ravish," a rather doubtful derivation. Still another term is sarah, literally, "princess" (Isa 49:23). The Septuagint sometimes uses the word basilissa; compare Ps 45:9. (2) To a female ruler or sovereign ("queen regnant"). The only instances are those of the queen (malkah) of Sheba (1Ki 10:1-13; compare 2Ch 9:1-12) and of Candace, the queen (basilissa) of the Ethiopians (Ac 8:27). In Mt 12:42 (compare Lu 11:31) Christ refers to the queen of the south (basilissa notou), meaning, of course, the queen of Sheba. (3) To a heathen deity, melekheth ha-shamayim, "the queen of heaven" (Jer 7:18; 44:17 ff).
See QUEEN OF HEAVEN.
(4) Metaphorically, to the city of Babylon (Rome) (Re 18:7): an expression denoting sovereign contempt and imaginary dignity and power.