5 occurrences in 5 dictionaries

Reference: Bed


In the East, is, and was anciently, a divan, or broad low step around the sides of a room, like a sofa, which answered to purpose of a sofa by day for reclining, and of a bed by night for sleeping, Ex 8:3; 2Sa 4:5-7. Sometimes it was raised several steps above the floor, 2Ki 1:4; Ps 132:4. It was covered very differently, and with more or less ornament, according to the rank of owner of the house. The poor had but a simple mattress or sheepskin; or a cloak or blanked, which also answered to wrap themselves in by day, Ex 22:2; De 24:13. Hence it was easy for the persons whom Jesus healed, to take up their beads and walk, Mr 4:21. Bedsteads, however, were not unknown, though unlike those of modern times. See De 3:11; 1Sa 19:15; Am 6:4. The Jews only laid off their sandals and outer garments at night.

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(Heb. mittah), for rest at night (Ex 8:3; 1Sa 19:13,15-16, etc.); during sickness (Ge 47:31; 48:2; 49:33, etc.); as a sofa for rest (1Sa 28:23; Am 3:12). Another Hebrew word (er'es) so rendered denotes a canopied bed, or a bed with curtains (De 3:11; Ps 132:3), for sickness (Ps 6:6; 41:3).

In the New Testament it denotes sometimes a litter with a coverlet (Mt 9:2,6; Lu 5:18; Ac 5:15).

The Jewish bedstead was frequently merely the divan or platform along the sides of the house, sometimes a very slight portable frame, sometimes only a mat or one or more quilts. The only material for bed-clothes is mentioned in 1Sa 19:13. Sleeping in the open air was not uncommon, the sleeper wrapping himself in his outer garment (Ex 22:26-27; De 24:12-13).

Illustration: Eastern Beds

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The outer garment worn by day sufficed the poor for bedstead, bed beneath, and covering above, whence it was forbidden to keep it in pledge after sunset, lest the poor man should be without covering (De 24:13). The bolster was often of platted goat's hair (1Sa 19:13). A quilt to wrap one's self in is the bed meant in the miracle of Jesus when He said "Take up thy bed and walk" (Joh 5:8-11). The cushion or seat at the stern was our Lord's "pillow" on the lake of Galilee (Mr 4:38). Stones served as Jacob's "pillows" (Hebrew) and afterwards as the consecrated pillar to commemorate the divine vision granted him (Ge 28:11). The divan or platform at the end or sides of a room often served as bedstead. In such a room the master of the house and his family lay, according to the parable (Lu 11:7), "My children are with me in bed."

The little chamber, bed, stool, table, and candlestick of Elijah (2Ki 4:10) were and are the usual furniture of a sleeping room. Some bed frame is implied in Es 1:6; 2Sa 3:31, "bier," margin bed. The giant Og had one of iron, a marvel in those days (one made of palm sticks is common in the present day), and required by his enormous weight and size (De 3:11). Og in some expedition of his against Ammon may have left behind him his gigantic bed, to impress his enemy with his super-human greatness, and the Ammonites may have preserved it in Rabbath, their capital; or Israel may have sent it to Ammon as a pledge of their friendly intentions (Jehovah having charged them not to disturb Ammon), and also a visible proof of their power in having conquered so mighty a prince as Og.

Royal beds (Song 3:9-10 margin) had pillars of marble or silver, the bottom gold, the covering of purple and divers colors, hangings fastened to the pillarsupported canopy, the beds of gold upon a tesselated pavement (Es 1:6); compare Am 6:4, "beds of ivory." Often used as couches in the day (Eze 23:41; Es 7:8). Watchers of vineyards had hammocks slung from trees (Isa 1:8; 24:20). Hebrew melunah, "a lodge for the night." Arab watchers sleep in them to be secure froth wild beasts; translate "the earth shall wave to and fro like a hammock," swung about by the wind.

The "bedchamber" where Joash was hidden was a storeroom for beds, and so well fitted for concealment (2Ki 11:2; 2Ch 22:11), not the usual reclining chamber. The bedroom was usually in the most retired part of the house (1Ki 22:25; Ex 8:3; Ec 10:20). In Eze 13:18, "Woe to the women that sew pillows to all armholes" ("elbows") the allusion is to false prophetesses making their dupes rest on elbow cushions in fancied ecstasy, a symbol of the "peace" they falsely promised (Eze 13:16). Beds were placed at the end of the chamber, on an ascent approached by steps: hence "I will not go up into my bed" (Ps 132:3).

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The Jewish bed consisted of the mattress, a mere mat, or one or more quilts; the covering, a finer quilt, or sometimes the outer garment worn by day,

1Sa 19:13

which the law provided should not be kept in pledge after sunset, that the poor man might not lack his needful covering,

De 24:13

the pillow,

1Sa 19:13

probably formed of sheep's fleece or goat's skin with a stuffing of cotton, etc.; the bedstead, a divan or bench along the side or end of the room, sufficing at a support for the bedding. Besides we have bedsteads made of ivory, wood, etc. referred to in

De 3:11; Am 6:4

The ornamental portions were pillars and a canopy, Judith 13:9, ivory carvings, gold and silver, and probably mosaic work, purple and fine linen.

Es 1:6; Song 3:9-10

The ordinary furniture of a bedchamber in private life is given in

2Ki 4:10

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BED. Mattresses, or thick cotton quilts folded, were used for sleeping upon. These were laid upon the duan, or divan, a part of the room elevated above the level of the rest, covered with a carpet in winter, a fine mat in summer. (See Accubation and Banquets.) A divan cushion serves for a pillow and bolster. They do not keep their beds made; the mattresses are rolled up, carried away, and placed in a cupboard till they are wanted at night. And hence the propriety of our Lord's address to the paralytic, "Arise, take up thy bed," or mattress, "and walk," Mt 9:6. The duan on which these mattresses are placed, is at the end of the chamber, and has an ascent of several steps. Hence Hezekiah is said to turn his face to the wall when he prayed, that is, from his attendants. In the day the duan was used as a seat, and the place of honour was the corner, Am 3:12.

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Basic English, produced by Mr C. K. Ogden of the Orthological Institute - public domain