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A correspondent of ours (signing himself as "TG") points out:
in his commentary on this passage [Talmud, Shabat 10b], explains ketonet passim
as keli milat karpas, a term for clothing of fine wool similar to
karpas in the Book of Esther, and to the striped garment of Tamar in II
Samuel 13:18. Esther was in Persia of course, so the sound of the word is
similar to the Persian karafs, defined as "a plant of which a salad is
made from . . . parsley . . . [and] celery."
There you have it. Stripes. Pasim means stripes.
|Tartan from Canaan||Rohl's Statue
of Joseph and Tartan
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Linen is a textile made from the fibers of the flax plant. Flax grows in the Middle East and in Ancient Times was also raised throughout Europe. The best linen came from Ireland.
#Highly absorbent and a good conductor of heat, linen fabric feels cool to the touch. Linen is the strongest of the vegetable fibers, with 2 to 3 times the strength of cotton.
..Linen fabrics have a high natural luster; their natural color ranges between shades of ivory, ecru, tan, or grey linen fabric has the ability to absorb and lose water rapidly. It can gain up to 20% moisture without feeling damp##
##When freed from impurities, linen is highly absorbent and will quickly remove perspiration from the skin. Linen is a stiff fabric and is less likely to cling to the skin; when it billows away, it tends to dry out and become cool so that the skin is being continually touched by a cool surface. It is a very durable, strong fabric, and one of the few that are stronger wet than dry. ##
##Flax is grown in many parts of the world, but top quality flax is primarily grown in Western Europe. In very recent years bulk linen production has moved to Eastern Europe and China, but high quality fabrics are still confined to niche producers in Ireland, Italy and Belgium. Also countries including Poland, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, British Isles and some parts of India.
##The Phoenicians, who, with their merchant fleet, opened up new channels of commerce to the peoples of the Mediterranean, besides developing the tin mines of Cornwall, introduced flax growing and the making of linen into Ireland before the common era, but the internal dissensions, which even in those early days were prevalent in Erin, militated against the establishment of an organized industry, and it is not until the twelfth century that we can find records of a definite attempt to systematize flax production.
##When the Edict of Nantes was revoked, in A.D. 1685, many of the Huguenots who had to flee the country settled in the British Isles, and amongst them was Louis Crommelin, who was born, and brought up as a weaver of fine linen, in the town of Cambrai. He fled to Ulster, and eventually settled down in the small town of Lisburn, about ten miles from Belfast. Belfast itself is perhaps the most famous linen producing center throughout history, during the Victorian era the majority of the worlds linen was produced in the city which gained it the name Linenopolis.
Nowadays kilts are often made with a wool and linen admixture. The linen provides strength, durability, and water-resistance. Such mixtures are however forbidden in the Torah.
#You shall not wear a garment of different sorts [Hebrew: shaatnez], such as wool and linen mixed together# (Deuteronomy 22:11).
#Nor shall a garment of mixed linen and wool come upon you# (Leviticus 19:19).
Today in the state of Israel and in areas where Religious Jews are concentrated overseas there exist shaatnez laboratories that can tell whether or not a woolen garment (the usual case) has any linen admixture.
Linen does not absorb natural dyes easily. For this reason the Bible (as explained by the Sages) allowed a woolen thread dyed with a special blue color to be attached together with white linen tassels to each edge of a four cornered garment.
#Speak to the Children of Israel and bid them that they make fringes on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of each corner a thread of blue (tekhelet). And it shall be for you as a fringe, that you may look upon it and remember all the commandments of G-d, and do them...# (Numbers 15:38-39)
The secret of making the blue thread was lost some time ago but nowadays attempts are being made to revive it.
The difficulty that then existed of dyeing linen may explain the
great prestige and value possessed by the cotonet pasim being made of colored
strips woven together and interlocking threads in a square-tartan type patterns.
All of the above brings us back to the meaning of the Hebrew words "Cotonet Pasim" and the varying interpretations they lend themselves to.
The Brit-Am approach (which really is that of leading Rabbinical Authorities and Commentators) is to regard the Hebrew text as the sacred words of the Almighty. Every word used is there for a reason. The different nuances of a certain word or group of words may all have significance at one and the same time. This approach is not just one based on faith but may be justified objectively by an examination of the text.
"Cotonet" means some type of garment. Nearly everyone seems to agree on this point.
"Pas" according to the Concordance of Iben Shushan [Hebrew] means "retsuah" i.e. "strip" as in Cotonet Pasim (Genesis 37:3].
The Cotonet Pasim was therefore made out of strips (pieces) or bore a striped design.
"Pas" can also connote "piece", "part of", end, trim, finish, etc.
The word "pas" is used for the palm (or piece of) the hand in Daniel 5:5.
One interpretation is that "cotonet pasim" meant a garment reaching to the ends (pasim) of the body i.e. the ankles and hands.
It can mean "stripe" or line. The Talmud (Shabat 10b) said it meant "stripe".
There is a certain logic in considering Pasim to refer to the design on the garment rather than the cut or tailoring aspects of the garment itself.
The word Pas (singular) or Pasim (plural) may also be related to the word "Pas" or "Pasah" meaning the increase and the spreading of color as in the cease of the signs of leprosy (Leviticus chapter 13). It may be objected that "Pasah" meaning the spreading of color is spelt with a "Sin" (for the "s" sound) and not with the "samech" (as in the word Pas meaning stripe) but "sin" and "samech" can interchange (e.g. Tosefta, Yom HaKipurin 1;9).
Not only that but in Rabbinical etymology the letter samech is considered a weakened devolution of the letter sin (Sources quoted in the works of Matatiyahu Galzerson).
Jastrow (p.1244) points out that PaSaH with a sin and PaSaH with a samech are two different forms of the same word meaning to spread or expand and used in the Bible concerning the spreading of color (e.g. Leviticus 13:51).
It may be therefore that another meaning of "pas" implies "color".
We saw that most of the Classical Commentators did say that the garment was of different colors in addition to which several mentioned stripes while others said squares, checkers, both stripes and squares, or in diamond-type formation [i.e. tartan] as found in the overlapping buds of an ear of wheat.
See the Table below:
The Different Eplanations:
Pleased with what you read"