Thursday, October 14, 2010


So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah. Jeremiah 38:11

In modern usage, to have "clout" means to have power and influence. But in the Bible, clout is an old word for a rag, a piece of cloth that has been torn off or is put to humble uses. In Jeremiah 38:11, not "under the treasury" but in "a wardrobe of the storehouses," Ebed-melech the Ethiopian found "old cast clouts and rotten rags" which he lowered to Jeremiah in the dungeon.

The revised versions of 1885-1901 call these "rags and worn-out garments"; RSV "old rags and worn-out clothes." In King John, III, 4, 58 Shakespeare has "a babe of clouts," which means a rag doll.

(The Bible Word Book, Bridges & Weigle, pg 70)

1 comment:

  1. Its really nice Blog.The silk tallit (also spelled tallis or talith) is a garment one can wear to create a sense of personal space during prayer - the name comes from two Hebrew words: TAL meaning tent and ITH meaning little.