Tired of see ads while studying? Now you can enjoy an "Ads Free" version of the site for as little as 10¢ a day.

Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament


Additional Links

SACKCLOTH.—A coarse, dark-coloured cloth, made of goat’s or camel’s hair (Gr. σάκκος, Heb. שַׂק), used in ordinary life for sacking, sieves, strainers, and the like, but in the Gospels twice named in connexion with prevalent mourning customs (Matthew 11:21, Luke 10:13), coupled with ‘ashes’ (wh. see) as an expression of penitential grief. The mourner wore the sackcloth garment, sometimes next the skin; and because of the garment’s coarseness it became a constant reminder of his grief, its irritation being a sort of penance; sometimes it was worn as an outer garment as a visible expression of mourning. Closely related to this use of sackcloth was the use of it by ascetics and prophets (cf. later use by pilgrims). So John the Baptist wore a garment of camel’s hair (Matthew 3:4, Mark 1:6) as the expression of a certain austerity of life, and as a rebuke to the love of ease and luxury which characterized the age.

E. B. Pollard.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Sackcloth'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. 1906-1918.

Search for…
Enter query in the box below:
Choose a letter to browse:
Next Entry