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Manners & Customs: Veils
Women wore veils in ancient Biblical times

Veil in Easton's Bible Dictionary (1.) Heb. mitpahath (Ruth 3:15; marg., "sheet" or "apron;" R.V., "mantle"). In Isa. 3:22 this word is plural, rendered "wimples;" R.V., "shawls" i.e., wraps. (2.) Massekah (Isa. 25:7; in Isa. 28:20 rendered "covering"). The word denotes something spread out and covering or concealing something else (comp. 2 Cor. 3:13-15). (3.) Masveh (Ex. 34:33, 35), the veil on the face of Moses. This verse should be read, "And when Moses had done speaking with them, he put a veil on his face," as in the Revised Version. When Moses spoke to them he was without the veil; only when he ceased speaking he put on the veil (comp. 2 Cor. 3:13, etc.). (4.) Paroheth (Ex. 26:31-35), the veil of the tabernacle and the temple, which hung between the holy place and the most holy (2 Chr. 3:14). In the temple a partition wall separated these two places. In it were two folding-doors, which are supposed to have been always open, the entrance being concealed by the veil which the high priest lifted when he entered into the sanctuary on the day of Atonement. This veil was rent when Christ died on the cross (Matt. 27:51; Mark 15:38; Luke 23:45). (5.) Tza'iph (Gen. 24:65). Rebekah "took a vail and covered herself." (See also 38:14, 19.) Hebrew women generally appeared in public without veils (12:14; 24:16; 29:10; 1 Sam. 1:12). (6.) Radhidh (Cant. 5:7, R.V. "mantle;" Isa. 3:23). The word probably denotes some kind of cloak or wrapper. (7.) Masak, the veil which hung before the entrance to the holy place (Ex. 26:36, 37).
http://www.bible-history.com/eastons/V/Veil,+vail/

Veil in Fausset's Bible Dictionary (See DRESS.) The mitpachath (Rth 3:15), tsaiph (Genesis 24:65; Genesis 38:14; Genesis 38:19), and radial (Song of Solomon 5:7; Isaiah 3:23). Moses' veil was the masveh (Exodus 34:33-35), related to suth (Genesis 49:11). An ample outer robe, drawn over the face when required. Mispachot, the false prophets' magical veils or "kerchiefs" (Ezekiel 13:18; Ezekiel 13:21) which they put over the heads of those consulting them as if to fit them for receiving a response, that they might be rapt in spiritual trance above the world; placed "upon the head of every stature," i.e. upon persons of every age and height, young and old. Re' aloth, light veils worn by females, called "mufflers" (Isaiah 3:19), from rahal "to tremble," i.e. tremulous, referring to their rustling motion. Tzammah, translated "locks" (Song of Solomon 4:1; Song of Solomon 4:3), the bride's veil, a mark of modesty and subjection to her lord. Isaiah 47:2, "take off thy veil," or "thy locks," nature's covering for a woman (1 Corinthians 11:15), a badge of female degradation. Anciently the veil was only exceptionally used for ornament or by women betrothed in meeting their future husbands, and at weddings (Genesis 24:65). Ordinarily women among the Jews, Egyptians, and Assyrians, appeared in public with faces exposed (Genesis 12:14; Genesis 24:16; Genesis 24:65; Genesis 20:16; Genesis 29:10; 1 Samuel 1:12). Assyrian and Egyptian sculptures similarly represent women without a veil. It was Mahometanism that introduced the present veiling closely and seclusion of women; the veil on them in worship was the sign of subjection to their husbands (1 Corinthians 11:4-15
http://www.bible-history.com/faussets/V/Veil/

Veil in Naves Topical Bible Worn By Rebekah Ge 24:65 By Tamar Ge 38:14,19 By Moses, to screen his face when he descended from Mount Sinai Ex 34:33,35; 2Co 3:13-16
http://www.bible-history.com/naves/V/VEIL/

Veil in Smiths Bible Dictionary With regard to the use of the veil, it is important to observe that it was by no means so general in ancient as in modern times. Much of the scrupulousness in respect of the use of the veil dates from the promulgation of the Koran, which forbade women appearing unveiled except in the presence of their nearest relatives. In ancient times the veil was adopted only in exceptional cases, either as an article of ornamental dress, So 4:1,3; 6:7 or by betrothed maidens in the presence of their future husbands, especially at the time of the wedding, Ge 24:65 or lastly, by women of loose character for purposes of concealment. Ge 38:14 Among the Jews of the New Testament age it appears to have been customary for the women to cover their heads (not necessarily their faces) when engaged in public worship.
http://www.bible-history.com/smiths/V/Veil/

Veil Scripture - Hebrews 10:20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Hebrews/10/

Veil Scripture - Hebrews 6:19 Which [hope] we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Hebrews/6/

Veil Scripture - Hebrews 9:3 And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Hebrews/9/

Veil Scripture - Luke 23:45 And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Luke/23/

Veil Scripture - Mark 15:38 And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom.
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Mark/15/

Veil Scripture - Matthew 27:51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Matthew/27/

Veil Scripture - Song of Solomon 5:7 The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me.
http://www.bible-history.com/kjv/Song+of+Solomon/5/

Veils in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE val: The following words are so translated in English Versions of the Bible (sometimes the King James Version vail): (1) miTpachath, Ruth 3:15 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "mantle." As the material was strong enough to serve as a bag for a large quantity of grain the Revised Version (British and American) is certainly right; compare Isa 3:22. (2) macweh, Ex 34:33- 35. Paul in his quotation of the passage in 2 Cor 3:13-16 uses kalumma, following Septuagint. The covering worn by Moses to conceal the miraculous brightness of his face, although, according to Massoretic Text, he seems to have worn it only in private. (3) macckhah, Isa 25:7; in 28:20 translated "covering." The use in 25:7 is figurative and the form of the "veil" a matter of indifference. (4) tsammah, the Revised Version (British and American) Song 4:1,3 (margin "locks" (of hair)); 6:7; Isa 47:2, the King James Version "locks." The meaning of the word is uncertain and the King James Version may very well be right. If, however, the Revised Version's translation is correct, a light ornamental veil is meant. (5) tsa`iph, Gen 24:65; 38:14,19. A large wrap is meant, which at times was used to cover the face also. In 24:65 Rebekah conformed to the etiquette which required the veiling of brides (see MARRIAGE). In Genesis 38 one motive for Tamar's use of the veil was certainly to avoid recognition, but it seems clear from the passage that veils were used by courtesans. Why is unknown, perhaps partly to conceal their identity, perhaps partly in parody of the marriage custom. (6) redhidh, Song 5:7 (the Revised Version (British and American) "mantle," margin "veil"); Isa 3:23. A light mantle is certainly meant. In Song 5:7 it is torn from the maiden in the watchmen's endeavor to detain her. (7) parakalumma, The Wisdom of Solomon 17:3 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "curtain." (8) Verb katakalupto, 1 Cor 11:6 f, with akatakalupto, "unveil" in 11:5; the King James Version has "cover" and "uncover"; kalupto, 2 Cor 4:3 (twice), anakalupto, 2 Cor 3:18; the King James Version "hid" and "open." It will be seen that there is a certain reference to what in modern times would be termed a "veil" only in (2) above. For a possible additional reference see MUFFLER. The use of the face veil as a regular article of dress was unknown to the Hebrew women, and if "veil" is to be understood in Song 4:1, etc., it was worn as an ornament only. The modern oriental custom of veiling is due to Mohammedan influence and has not been universally adopted by Jewesses in the Orient. In New Testament times, however, among both Greeks and Romans, reputable women wore a veil in public (Plutarch Quaest. Rom. xiv) and to appear without it was an act of bravado (or worse); Tarsus, Paul's home city, was especially noted for strictness in this regard (Dio of Prusa, Tarsica prior, section symbol 48). Hence, Paul's indignant directions in 1 Cor 11:2-16, which have their basis in the social proprieties of the time. The bearing of these directions, however, on the compulsory use of the hat by modern women in public worship would appear to be very remote.
http://www.bible-history.com/isbe/V/VEIL+(1)/

Women Wore Veils The veil was the distinctive female wearing apparel. All females, with the exception of maidservants and women in a low condition of life, wore a veil. They would usually never lay it aside, except when they were in the presence of servants, or on rare occasions. This custom has prevailed among the Eastern women down to the modern era. When traveling, women may throw the veil over the back part of their head, but if they see a man approaching, they place it back in its original position. Thus Rebekah, when she saw Isaac approaching her camel caravan, covered her face with her veil (Genesis 24:64, 65). When women are at home they do not speak to a guest without being veiled and in the presence of maids. They do not enter the guest's chamber, but rather, standing at the door, they make it known to the servant what is wanted (See II Kings 4:12, 13). It is well to remember that prostitutes went unveiled. Today, as in olden times, virgins and married women may be seen wearing veils in Bible lands. The old customs are not being observed strictly by some Moslem women, for they are now going unveiled. Although it was the custom for women to wear a veil entirely covering their head, when they were in public, this custom was not always strictly enforced among the Hebrew women. They were allowed more liberty than the Arab women are allowed today. The Egyptians saw Sarah's face (Genesis 12:14). While Hannah was praying, Eli "marked her mouth" (I Samuel 1:12). When a woman kept her veil down, it was forbidden for anyone to lift it, but she was free to do so if she chose. JESUS said, "Whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart" (Matthew 5:28). All these Scriptures indicate that women sometimes exposed their faces to view. Young girls were more apt to be veiled than a married women. [Manners And Customs of Bible Lands]
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