(Rich Crimson Purple) The Color of Power in the Bible (אַרְגָּמָן)

The Hebrew Bible is full of vital color, no more prominently than in the description of the Mishkan, or Tabernacle dwelling, in the book of Exodus.  Some of that color might look like these textile remains described here at Haaretz. The three thousand year old preserved remains were found at Timna, a copper mine in the southern Aravah desert of Israel.  This was a color of royal and priestly privilege. Also called Tyrean purple and common throughout the ancient eastern Mediterranean, the dye was extracted from the mucus of the murex snail and exposed to the sun for a prolonged period of time during production. Wild wooly, the purple stain makes an animal impression. 

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
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