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146 § 135. DRess at Festivals, Etc.

5: 2. The mourning dress, Hebrew pp or sackcloth, is well known. It was in truth a sack, which was thrown over the person and extended down to the knees, but which, nevertheless, had armholes for the admission of the arms. It derives its name from the Arabic verb, Uio to tear asunder, because in the moment of the person's grief it was torn from the neck down to the breast, and sometimes as far as the girdle. The materials were a coarse dark cloth of goat's hair, Job 16:15. Jonah 3:5.

Note. In the book of Leviticus, 13: 47–59. we are informed of the leprosy of garments in the following terms; “the garment also, that the plague of leprosy is in, whether it be a woollen garment or a linen garment, whether it be in the warp or woof, whether in a skin, or any thing made of skin,” &c. The marks or indications of the existence and nature of this leprosy are also stated with some particularity in the verses referred to. What this plague, as it is termed, was, it is difficult to state with much certainty, since the conjectures, which the learned have hazarded in regard to it, are by no means satisfactory. Without doubt the Hebrews had observed certain destructive effects wrought upon clothing, whether made of wool and cotton, or leather, and not understanding their origin or their nature, they choose to call them from certain resemblances as much apparent as real, the corroding plague or leprosy, n-soo nons. Altogether the most probable conjecture in regard to these effects is, that they were merely the depredations of certain little insects, which could not be seen by the naked eye. The Hebrews without doubt, considered the clothes' leprosy, as they termed it, contagious, and consequently a serious and fearful evil. This opinion was the ground of the rigid laws, which are laid down in respect to it in Leviticus 12:47–59.



§ 136. Of Food IN General.

At first, men lived upon the fruits of trees, upon herbs, roots, and seeds, and whatever else they could find in the vegetable kingdom, that might conduce to the support of life, all which was expressed in Hebrew by the word Eriš, in the broadest sense of the word, Gen. 1:29. 2: 16. Afterwards a method was invented to bruise grain, and to reduce it to a mass, to ferment it, and bake it, and thus to make bread, which is also expressed by bro, in the more limited sense of the word. Still later, not only water, but milk, oil, and honey, were mingled with the meal, and bread was made of a richer and more valuable kind. Even so early as the time of Abraham, the art of preparing bread was carried to some degree of perfection. Before the deluge the flesh of animals was converted into food, as may be inferred from the division of animals into clean and unclean, Gen. 7: 2, 8; after the deluge animals are expressly mentioned, as being slain for food, Gen. 9: 3–6. But meat is not so palatable and nutritious in warm climates as others,

and fruits, consequently, bread, olives, and milk, are the customary food.

§ 137. PREPARATION of Food by FIRE.

Originally food of every kind was eaten without being cooked, because there was no fire. If there had been fire, it would have been of no consequence in this case, seeing that its use in the preparation of food was unknown. Men were undoubtedly taught by chance to roast flesh and eventually to boil it. It was found so much more agreeable, when prepared in this way, that men were careful not to let the fire, which they had now found, become extinguished. Their method of obtaining fire was, to elicit sparks by the collision of stone and flint, or by the friction of pie

t 148 § 138. of MILLs.

ces of wood, and afterwards to excite a blaze. This method of obtaining fire was very ancient, as we may learn from the etymology of the word roup, Is. 50: 11. 64: 1.

§ 138. Of Mills.

Corn was eaten at first without any preparation of it at all; the custom of thus eating it had not gone into total desuetude in the time of Christ, Matt. 12: 1. Levit. 2: 12. Deut. 23:25. After the uses of fire were known, it was parched. Parching it became so common, that the words of, *p, and N*E, which properly mean parched, mean also corn or meal, 2 Sam. 17:28. Lev. 2: 12, 14. Ruth 2: 14, 18. Some, who found a difficulty in mastication, broke to pieces the kernels of corn with stones or pieces of wood ; this suggested the idea of mortars, and eventually of mills. The mortar, Hono, wrizo, was used in the time of Moses for bruising corn, also the mill, jorit, Num. 11: 8. Fine meal, i.e. corn or grain ground or beaten fine, is spoken of as far back as the time of Abraham, Gen. 18; 6; hence mills and mortars must have been known before his time. The mill common among the Hebrews, scarcely differed at all from that, which is used at this day in Egypt and the East. It consisted of two circular stones, two feet in diameter and half a foot thick. The lower one was called "rnr and nee, Deut. 24; 6. Job 41: 15, 16; it exhibited a slight rise or elevation on the centre, and was fixed in the floor. The upper one was called so, Judg. 9:53; was moveable, and in order to make it fit precisely to the nether one, was slightly hollowed. In the middle of it was a hole, through which the corn to be ground was admitted. The upper stone had a handle attached to it, by which it was moved upon the lower, and the corn and grain were in this way broken. There were sieves attached to the mill, which separated the flour from the bran; the bran was put into the mill again and ground over. The sieves were made of reeds; those made of horse hair were a later invention, not earlier than the time of Pliny.


§ 140. BAKING BREAD IN AN oven. 149

§ 139. GRINding.

Since there were neither public mills nor bakers, except the king's, Gen. 40: 2. Hos. 7: 4–10. each one by consequence owned a mill himself; hence it was made an infringement of the law, for a person to take another's mill or millstone, as a pledge, Deut. 24; 6. for without his mill, there being no public ones, he would have been in a bad situation. At first barley alone was ground, but af. terwards wheat more commonly, as the poor alone used barley. Barley bread answers better in the warm climate of the East, than among us. On the second day it becomes insipid and rough to the palate ; and this is the case also in warm climates with wheat bread. Hence the necessity of baking every day, and hence also the daily grinding at the mills about evening. The sound of the millstones, probably at this time, is spoken of by the prophet, Jer. 25: 10. The mill was commonly turned by two persons, the lowest maid-servants. They sat opposite to each other, facing, the one on one side, the other on the other side. One took hold of the mill handle and impelled it half way round; the other then seized it and completed its revolution, Exod. 11:5. Job 31: 10, 11. Is. 47: 2. Matt. 24:41. The labour was severe and menial ; frequently enemies, taken in war, were condemned to perform it, Judg. 16:21. Lam. 5: 13.


The business of baking was performed anciently by women, however high their stations, Gen. 18; 6. Lev. 26:26. 2 Sam. 13: 6, 8. Jer. 7: 18, 19. When luxury afterwards prevailed among them, the matrons and their daughters gave it up to their maids, 1 Sam. S. 13. These maids were so numerous in the palace of David, that a portion of bread, etc. was distributed to them, the same as to a large multitude of men, 2 Sam. 6: 19. In Egypt there were king's bakers very early; they make their appearance in Palestine also, but at a much later period, Hos. 7: 4–7. Jer. 37: 21.

Kneading troughs were a sort of wooden trays, in which the flour, being mingled with water, was reduced to a solid mass, and 150 § 140. BAKING BREAD IN AN oven.

after remaining a little time, was kneaded, some leaven being added to it, Exod. 12:34. Deut. 28: 5, 17. In case it was necessary to prepare the bread very hastily, the leaven was left out, Gen. 18; 6. 19. 3. Judg. 6: 19. 1 K. 17: 12. Exod. 12:15, 34. 13: 3, 7. Lev. 2: 11. Deut. 16:3. Amos 4: 5. The cakes when made were round, br; no-22, Judg. 8: 5. and nine or ten inches in diameter. The unleavened cakes were not thicker than a knife, but the leavened were as thick as a man's little finger. The bread was not cut with a knife but broken, Hebrew one. Is. 58: 7. Lam. 4:4. Matt. 14: 19. 15:36. 26:26. Of ovens or places for baking there are four kinds; I. The mere sand, heated by a fire, which was subsequently removed. The raw cakes were placed upon it; in a little while they were turned, and afterwards, to complete the process, were covered with warm ashes and coals. Unless they were turned, they were not thoroughly baked. This explains Hos. 7: 8. The ashes or coal-baked cakes so called, Hebrew nomy, were prepared in this way, Gen. 18; 6. 19. 3. 1 K. 19: 6. II. The second sort of oven was an excavation in the earth, two and a half feet in diameter, of different depths from five to six feet, as we may suppose from those which still exist in Persia. This sort of oven occurs under the word Ey"z, and in Lev. 11: 35. is mentioned in connexion with the word nain. The bottom is paved with stones; when the oven is sufficiently warmed, the fire is taken away, the cakes are placed upon the warm stones, and the mouth of the oven is shut. III. A moveable oven, called hor, which was besmeared within and without with clay, being constructed of brick. A fire was kindled within it, and the dough was placed upon the side, where it baked, and was called, hon res?, Lev. 2:4. IV. A plate of iron, placed upon three stones; the fire was kindled beneath it, and the raw cakes placed on the upper surface. The cake baked in this way is perhaps the nann, mentioned in Lev.2.5. 6: 14. Not only leavened, and unleavened cakes were baked in these ovens, but other kinds, which it is not ne

cessary to mention. We shall have to pass by the rest of the culinary apparatus.

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