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Who is Salome?
        SALO'ME
     1. The wife of Zebedee, and the mother of James the elder and John the Evangelist, and probably the sister of the Virgin Mary, John 19:25; was one of the followers of Christ, Matt 27:56; Mark 15:40; Mark 16:1, though she seems, like many others, to have at first mistaken the true nature of his kingdom. Matt 20:21. 2. The name of "the daughter of Herodias" who danced before Herod. Matt 14:6; Mark 6:22. She is not named in the N.T., but by Josephus (Antiq. 18,c.5,'4). The graphic account of Herod's feast may be traced to Chusa, the wife of Herod's steward, Luke 8:3, who was probably present. Salome married her uncle Philip, tetrarch of Trachonitis, and next Aristobulus, king of Chalcis. SALT is abundant in Palestine. The famous Jehel Usdum is substantially a mountain of rock-salt about 7 miles long, from 1 1/2 to 3 miles wide, and several hundred feet high. This ridge, almost entirely composed of this mineral, extends to the south from the south-west corner of the Dead Sea. Besides the rock-salt to be obtained from this ridge and its vicinity, the Jews used, and preferred for domestic purposes, salt obtained by evaporation from the waters of the Mediterranean and Dead Seas. On the eastern shore of the latter it is found in lumps often more than a foot thick, in places which the lake had overflowed in the rainy season. The stones on the shore are covered with an incrustation of lime or gypsum. Branches and twigs which fall into the water from the bushes become encased in salt; and if a piece of wood is thrown in, it soon acquires a bark or rind of salt. From this fact some have attempted to explain the transformation of Lot's wife into a pillar of salt. Gen 19:26; while others suppose that the expression is figurative, denoting that she was made an everlasting monument of divine displeasure (salt being an emblem of perpetuity), and others still think that she was miraculously transformed into a solid column of salt. At the south-western extremity of the Dead Sea there is a plain of considerable extent east of Jebel Usdum, the soil of which is entirely covered with salt, without the slightest trace of vegetation. This is believed by Robinson to be the "valley" (or plain) "of salt," where David's army vanquished the Edomites, 2 Sam 8:13; 1 Chr 18:12; 2 Chr 25:11. By the "salt-pits," Zeph 2:9, we are not to understand quarries from which rock-salt is extracted, but such pits as the Arabs, even at this day, make upon the shore of the Dead Sea, in order that they may be filled when the spring freshets raise the waters of the lake. When the water evaporates, it leaves in the pits a salt crust about an inch thick, which furnishes the salt used throughout the country. Pits of this sort seem to be alluded to in Eze 47:11. In Josh 15:62 a "city of salt" is mentioned, in the neighborhood of the Dead Sea. The uses of salt are sufficiently known. Most food would be insipid without it. Job 6:6. Salt being thus essential to the enjoyment of food, the word was used to denote the subsistence which a person obtained in the service of another. Thus, in Ezr 4:14, the words translated "we have maintenance from the king's palace" are in the original "we salt" (or are salted) "with the salt of the palace." And even now, among the Persians and East Indians, to "eat the salt" of any one is to be in his employment. Salt was also used in sacrifices. Lev 2:13; Mark 9:49. In the last passage reference is had to the perpetuity of suffering. New-born children were rubbed with salt. Eze 16:4. Salt, as a preservative from corruption, symbolized durability, fidelity, and purity. Hence an indissoluble and perpetual covenant is called a "covenant of salt." Num 18:19; Lev 2:13; 2 Chr 13:5. The idea of sacred obligation to the king is involved in the above quotation from Ezra. Among the modern Arabs, to "eat salt" with any one is a pledge of perpetual and mutual friendship. No plants can germinate in a soil covered with salt. Hence a "salt land" is an unfruitful, desert land. Jer 17:6. Salt was also used as a visible emblem of sterility. When Abimelech took Shechem, Jud 9:45, he "beat down the city and sowed it with salt," as a token that it should continue desolate. In like manner, the emperor Frederick Barbarossa, when he destroyed Milan, in the year 1162, caused the ground to be ploughed and strewed with salt. On the other hand, as salt renders food savorv, it is employed as an emblem of holy life and conversation. Mark 9:50; Col 4:6. In Matt 5:13, Christ calls his disciples "the salt of the earth" - i.e., of mankind, because the latter was to be enlightened and purified by their agency and preserved for their sake. There is reference in the remainder of the verse to the fact that, as Oriental salt often contains mineral impurities, by exposure to rain or dampness this material may lose its savor or valuable part, and become "good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men."


Bibliography Information
Schaff, Philip, Dr. "Biblical Definition for 'salome' in Schaffs Bible Dictionary".
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