Bible Dictionary

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Hem of garment

An important part of an Israelite’s dress, owing to the regulation in Num. 15:38–39. It was really a tassel at each “wing” or corner of the tallith or mantle (Matt. 14:36). The law required that it should be bound with a thread of blue, the color of heaven. The strict Jews to this day wear these tassels, though they are usually concealed. The Pharisees made them conspicuously large (Matt. 23:5). It would be the tassel that hung over the shoulder at the back that the woman with the issue of blood came and touched (Luke 8:44; also Ex. 28:33–34).