Hebrew: pishtah, i.e., “peeled”

in allusion to the fact that the stalks of flax when dried were first split or peeled before being steeped in water for the purpose of destroying the pulp

This plant was cultivated from earliest times. The flax of Egypt was destroyed by the plague of hail when it “was bolled”, i.e., was forming pods for seed (Exodus 9:31). It was extensively cultivated both in Egypt and Israel.

Reference is made in Joshua 2:6 to the custom of drying flax-stalks by exposing them to the sun on the flat roofs of houses.

It was much used in forming articles of clothing such as girdles, also cords and bands (Leviticus 13:48, 52, 59; Deuteronomy 22:11).

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