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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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The word rue occurs only in . 'But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment,' etc. In the parallel passage, , dill, translated anise in the English Version, is mentioned instead of rue. Both dill and rue were cultivated in the gardens of Eastern countries in ancient times as they are at the present-day. Rue was highly esteemed as a medicine, even as early as the time of Hippocrates. Pliny says, 'Rue is an herbe as medicinable as the best. That of the garden hath a broader leafe, and brauncheth more than the wild, which is more hotte, vehement, and rigorous in all operations; also that is it sowed usually in Februarie, when the western wind, Favonius, bloweth.' That it was employed as an ingredient in diet, and as a condiment, is abundantly evident from Apicius, as noticed by Celsius, and is not more extraordinary than the fondness of some Eastern nations for assafoetida as a seasoning to food. That one kind was cultivated by the Israelites is evident from its being mentioned as one of the articles of which the Pharisees paid their tithes, though they neglected the weightier matters of the law. Rosenmüller states that in the Talmud the rue is indeed mentioned among kitchen herbs; but, at the same time, it is there expressly stated, that it is tithe free, it being one of those herbs which are not cultivated in gardens, according to the general rule established in the Talmud.





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Bibliography Information
Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Rue'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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