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nations, we find a strong tendency to believe that women were in more immediate connection with Heaven, than men. Miriam, the sister of Aaron, was a prophetess, and seems to have possessed great influence. Deborah, the wife of Lapidoth, was not only a prophetess, but for many years a judge in Israel; and we are told that Barak refused to go up with his army against Sisera, unless she went up with him. At a later period, there was Anna the prophetess, who for many years remained in the temple of the Lord, might and day, in fasting and prayer. When Joseph and Mary brought the child Jesus into the temple, she immediately “gave thanks to the Lord, and spake of him to all them who looked for redemption in Israel.” The belief in women who were under the influence of evil spirits, is shown by the story of the witch of Endor. That women were imbued with the sternness which marked the barbarous character of men, is evident in the story of Jael, who drove the nail through the temples of Sisera, her sleeping guest; and of Judith, who deliberately bewitched the senses of Holofernes.” that she might gain an opportunity to sever his head from his shoulders. Josephus tells us that Mary, the daughter of Eleazer, who dwelt beyond Jordan, of eminent wealth and rank, fled away to Jerusalem during the Roman invasion, and was there when the city was besieged by Caesar's troops. The little property she had been able to bring safely out of Perea was seized by the rapacious guards, from whom she received continual

insult and injury. At last famine prevailed to a dreadful degree in Jerusalem, and it became impossible for her to obtain any food. Goaded to madness by long continued hunger, she killed her own infant for food, saying, “Why should I preserve thee, miserable babe! If the Romans spare our lives, we must be slaves; and the seditious villains among us are more terrible than either of these things. Be thou my food and a by-word to the world, which is all that is now wanting to complete the calamities of the Jews.” The soldiers perceived that food had been cooked in her house, and demanded their share of it. She produced the remnant of her horrid meal, saying, in mockery, “This is mine own son; and what has been done is mine own doing. Eat of this food; I have eaten of it myself. Do not pretend to be more tender than a woman, or more compassionate than a mother.” The seditious soldiers, accustomed as they were to bloodshed and crime, went out trembling and afraid. When the famishing people heard of it, they desired to die, and esteemed those most happy who had died before such miseries were witnessed. The dress of the ancient Hebrew women probably differed but little from that worn by the daughters of Israel at the present day. A robe which fell in ample folds, fastened by a girdle; loose flowing sleeves confined by bracelets; braided hair; and a turban, from which descended a long, transparent veil. Garments of silk and fine linen, of scarlet and purple, are often mentioned in connection with people of rank; VOL. I. 2

and we are told that Tamar wore, a robe of divers colors, according to the custom of the king's unmarried daughters. Jewels were in use, even in the days of the patriarchs; for when Isaac sent his servant in search of Rebecca, he sent bracelets and earrings, of silver and of gold; and when Moses built a tabernacle for the Lord, “Both men and women came, as many as were willing-hearted, and brought bracelets, and ear-rings, and rings, and tablets, all jewels of gold, an offering unto the Lord. And all the women that were wise-hearted did spin with their hands and brought that which they had spun, both of blue, and of purple, and of scarlet, and of fine linen.” The Israelitish mirrors were made of polished brass, and the women were so partial to them that they carried them everywhere, even to the most solemn places of worship. The use of false hair among the ancient Jews seems to be implied by the fact that Absalom's hair sold for two hundred shekels. The Jews endeavored, both by law and custom, to keep their nation unmixed by foreign intermarriages; and it was a favorite plan with them to unite different branches of the same family. Thus the wife of Abraham was his sister, by the father's side; and Isaac and Jacob both sought wives among their kinsmen. When a man died without heirs, the nearest relation was bound to marry the widow; and if he refused to do so, she publicly accused him before the elders, loosed the shoe from his foot, spat in his face, and said, “So shall it be done unto the man that will not build up his brother's house.” And his name was called in Israel, “The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.” Notwithstanding the effort to keep the blood of the nation, and even of individual families, unmixed from generation to generation, the rule was sometimes broken through. Thus Moses married an Ethiopian woman; the wife of Joseph was daughter of the priest of On; and Solomon married the daughter of Pharaoh, king of Egypt. It is generally supposed that formal ceremonies at a wedding were first prescribed by Moses. According to the rabbies, the appointed days were Friday for a bride who had never been married, and Thursday for a widow. The contract was read and signed by ten witnesses, who were free and of age. The bride was veiled and given to the bridegroom by her parents. Her father said, “Take her according to the law of Moses;” and the husband answered, “I take her according to that law.” Benedictions were then pronounced both by the parents and the guests. The maidens sang a marriage song, and the men danced around the bridegroom, while the women danced around the bride. The feasting continued seven days, unless the bride were a widow, in which case they continued but three days. If a man married a number of wives in quick succession, he was bound to allow a feast of seven days to each. At a later period the form was somewhat changed. In the presence of ten witnesses, the bridegroom said to the bride, “Be thou a wife to me according to the law of Moses, and I will worship and honor thee, according to the word of God, and will feed and govern thee, according to the custom of those who worship, honor, and govern their wives faithfully. I give thee fifty shekels for thy dowry.” The story of Samson and Delilah seems to imply that custom did not allow a young man to seek a girl in marriage without the intervention of his parents. He said to his father and mother, “I have seen a woman of the daughters of the Philistines; now therefore get her for me to wife;” and when his parents started objections, he still pleaded, “Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.” The idea of applying to the beautiful Delilah in person does not seem to have occurred to his mind. During the magnificent prosperity of Israel, marriage ceremonies were conducted with more pomp than they had been in the days of the patriarchs. Instead of the bridegroom's paying a certain sum of money, or performing a certain period of service for his bride, it became customary for wealthy parents to give a handsome dowry with their daughters. This is the natural tendency of society; because with the progress of wealth and refinement women become expensive, rather than profitable, in a pecuniary point of view. On the day of the nuptials, the bride was conducted by her female relations to the bath, where she was anointed with the choicest perfumes, her hair perfumed and braided, her eyebrows deepened with black powder, and the tips of her fingers tinged with

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