1 Moreover take thou up a lamentation for the princes of Israel,

The Judah-lioness and her cubs. A lamentation for Jehoahaz and Jehoiachin, Judah's last two home-appointed rulers, trapped and carried away. A warning to then - reigning Zedekiah, Babylon's appointee.

Bro Growcott - Prophecies in the captivity

2 And say, What is thy mother? A lioness: she lay down among lions, she nourished her whelps among young lions.

In lamenting the then coming indignation of Yahweh upon the princes of Israel, he styles Jerusalem, the metropolis of Judah's state, their "mother," and "lioness."

-Jerusalem the throne of Judah's Lion, as Nineveh was of the Assyrian. "She lay down," saith he

4 The nations also heard of him; he was taken in their pit, and they brought him with chains unto the land of Egypt.

* This was Jehoahaz, whom Pharoah Necho dethroned, and carried a prisoner to Egypt, where he died.

5 Now when she saw that she had waited, and her hope was lost, then she took another of her whelps, and made him a young lion.

*This was Jehoiakim and after him Jehoiachin, successors to Jehoahaz.

9 And they put him in ward in chains, and brought him to the king of Babylon: they brought him into holds, that his voice should no more be heard upon the mountains of Israel.

*From this use of the phrase "young lions" it will be seen, that the inhabitants of Jerusalem or the citizens of Judah, in general, are not regarded as lions young or old, although a lion is the symbol of the state. A lion represents the power, not the people.

The generality are "whelps" without power; so that "a young lion" is a whelp made such by exaltation to power. The eagle-winged lion of Nineveh, the plucked lion of Babylon, the lion of Judah, and the lion of Sheba, Dedan, and Tarshish, all come under the same rule. 

They represent powers, whose subjects become lions when promoted to the administration of affairs. In accordance, therefore, with prophetic heraldry, the politicals through whom the lion-power ruling over Sheba Dedan, and Tarshish contemporary with Gog, in the latter days, finds expression, are termed

"all the young lions thereof."

Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Mar 1858