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        One marked feature of Oriental mourning is what may be called its studies publicity and the careful observance of the prescribed ceremonies. Ge 23:2; Job 1:20; 2:12
        1. Among the particular forms observed the following may be mentioned: (a) Rending the clothes. Ge 37:29,34; 44:13 etc. (b) Dressing in sackcloth. Ge 37:34; 2Sa 3:31; 21:10 etc. (c) Ashes, dust or earth sprinkled on the person. 2Sa 13:19; 15:32 etc. (d) Black or sad-colored garments. 2Sa 14:2; Jer 8:21 etc. (e) Removal of ornaments or neglect of person. De 21:12,13 etc. (f) Shaving the head, plucking out the hair of the head or beard. Le 10:6; 2Sa 19:24 etc. (g) Laying bare some part of the body. Isa 20:2; 47:2 etc. (h) Fasting or abstinence in meat and drink. 2Sa 1:12; 3:35; 12:16,22 etc. (i) In the same direction may be mentioned diminution in offerings to God, and prohibition to partake of sacrificial food. Le 7:20; De 26:14 (k) Covering the "upper lip," i.e. the lower part of the face, and sometimes the head, in token of silence. Le 13:45; 2Sa 15:30; 19:4 (l) Cutting the flesh, Jer 16:6,7; 41:5 beating the body. Eze 21:12; Jer 31:19 (m) Employment of persons hired for the purpose of mourning. Ec 12:5 Jer 9:17; Am 5:16; Mt 9:23 (n) Akin to the foregoing usage the custom for friends or passers-by to join in the lamentations of bereaved or afflicted persons. Ge 50:3; Jud 11:40; Job 2:11; 30:25 etc. (o) The sitting or lying posture in silence indicative of grief. Ge 23:3; Jud 20:26 etc. (p) Mourning feast and cup of consolation. Jer 16:7,8
        2. The period of mourning varied. In the case of Jacob it was seventy days, Ge 50:3 of Aaron, Nu 20:29 and Moses, Deut 34:8 thirty. A further period of seven days in Jacob's case. Ge 50:10 Seven days for Saul, which may have been an abridged period in the time of national danger. 1Sa 31:13 With the practices above mentioned, Oriental and other customs, ancient and modern, in great measure agree. Arab men are silent in grief, but the women scream, tear their hair, hands and face, and throw earth or sand on their heads. Both Mohammedans and Christians in Egypt hire wailing-women, and wail at stated times. Burckhardt says the women of Atbara in Nubia shave their heads on the death of their nearest relatives --a custom prevalent also among several of the peasant tribes of upper Egypt. He also mentions wailing-women, and a man in distress besmearing his face with dirt and dust in token of grief. In the "Arabian Nights" are frequent allusions to similar practices. It also mentions ten days and forty days as periods of mourning. Lane, speaking of the modern Egyptians, says, "After death the women of the family raise cries of lamentation called welweleh or wilwal, uttering the most piercing shrieks, and calling upon the name of the deceased, 'Oh, my master! Oh, my resource! Oh, my misfortune! Oh, my glory!" See Jer 22:18 The females of the neighborhood come to join with them in this conclamation: generally, also, the family send for two or more neddabehs or public wailing-women. Each brings a tambourine, and beating them they exclaim, 'Alas for him!' The female relatives, domestics and friends, with their hair dishevelled and sometimes with rent clothes, beating their faces, cry in like manner, 'Alas for him!' These make no alteration in dress, but women, in some cases, dye their shirts, head-veils and handkerchiefs of a dark-blue color. They visit the tombs at stated periods." --Mod. Eg. iii. 152,171,195.

Bibliography Information
Smith, William, Dr "Meaning and Definition for 'mourning' in Smiths Bible Dictionary". - Smith's; 1901.

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