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Bible Dictionaries

People's Dictionary of the Bible

Embalming

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Embalming. A process by which, dead bodies are preserved from decay. When Jacob died in Egypt, "Joseph commanded his servants, the physicians, to embalm his father, for burial in Canaan." The process occupied forty days. Joseph also was himself embalmed, that his body might be carried with the children of Israel when they left Egypt for Palestine. Genesis 50:2-3; Genesis 50:26. It does not appear that the Hebrews practiced the mode of embalming of the Egyptians. Still some partial process was employed, tending to soothe surviving friends by arresting or delaying natural corruption. Thus Asa was laid in a bed "filled with sweet odors and divers kinds of spices prepared by the apothecaries' art." 2 Chronicles 16:14. Also the women who had followed Jesus "bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him," Mark 16:1; Luke 23:56; and Nicodemus "brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes," and "wound" the body "in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury." John 19:39-40. In some instances, too, the later Jews embalmed a body in honey, after having covered it with wax. See Bissell, Bib. Antiq.

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Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Embalming'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/rpd/e/embalming.html. 1893.

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