What is Linen?
, a cloth made of flax. It was much valued and used in ancient as it is in modern times. Fine white linen is in Scripture the emblem of innocence or moral purity. Rev 15:6, though it is also mentioned as a mark of luxury. Luke 16:19. The best linen was anciently made in Egypt, as that country afforded the finest flax. The dress of the Egyptian priests was made of linen, and so was the dress of state in which Pharaoh arrayed Joseph. Gen 41:42. Also the sheets in which mummies were wrapped, and which formerly were held to be some kind of cotton fabric, have been proved by microscopic examination to consist of linen. In the Hebrew text several different words are employed to denote linen. The exact distinction between these words has not been made out, but it is probable that they denote native fabrics in distinction from those imported from Egypt and Syria, or perhaps only different kinds of the same native product. For linen in general was highly valued and much used among the Jews. The temple veil, 2 Chr 3:14; 2 Chr 2:14, the holy garments of the priests, 1 Chr 15:27, and of the Levite choir, 2 Chr 5:12, the over-garment of the king, 1 Chr 15:27, etc., were made of it.