A well-known plant with yellowish stem and bright-blue flowers. Its fibres are employed in the manufacture of linen. The root contains an oil, and after the oil is expressed is sued as a food for cattle. Egypt was celebrated for the culture of flax and the manufacture of linen. The spinning was anciently done by women of noble birth. It seems probable that the cultivation of flax for the purpose of the manufacture of linen was by no means confined to Egypt, but that, originating in India, it spread over Asia at a very early period of antiquity, and you can find more about that here on st-takla.org on other commentaries and dictionary entries. That it was grown in Palestine even before the conquest of that country by the Israelites appears from (Joshua 2:6) The various processes employed in preparing the flax for manufacture into cloth are indicated:
The drying process.
The peeling of the stalks and separation of the fibres.
The hackling. (Isaiah 19:9) That flax was one of the most important crops in Palestine appears from (Hosea 2:5,9)
Main reference: Smith's Bible Dictionary (1860s)
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