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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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Fig. 239—Lanterns

This word occurs only in , where the party of men which went out of Jerusalem to apprehend Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane is described as being provided 'with lanterns and torches.' In the article Lamp it has been shown that the Jewish lantern, or, if we may so call it, lamp-frame, was similar to that now in use among the Orientals.

As the streets of Eastern towns are not lighted at night, and never were so, lanterns are used to an extent not known among us. Such, doubtless, was also formerly the case; and it is therefore remarkable that the only trace of a lantern which the Egyptian monuments offer, is that contained in the present engraving. In this case it seems to be borne by the night-watch, or civic guard, and is shaped like those in common use among ourselves. A similar lantern is at this day used in Persia, and perhaps does not materially differ from those mentioned in Scripture. More common at present in Western Asia is a large folding lantern of waxen cloth strained over rings of wire, with a top and bottom of tinned copper. It is usually about two feet long by nine inches in diameter, and is carried by servants before their masters, who often pay visits to their friends at or after supper-time. In many Eastern towns the municipal law forbids any one to be in the streets after nightfall without a lantern.





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

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