From: Margaret Wilkins (
Date: Wed Oct 06 1999 - 09:38:47 EDT

As a spinner I'm going to dare to take issue with Jim West over Rahab's
LINOKALAMHN. What she hid the spies under were stalks of the flax plant
laid out on her roof (EPI TOU DWMATOS, as the LXX says), perhaps to dry
after they had been soaked to remove the outer layer of the stalk to reveal
and soften the spinnable fibres inside.

Not many people today spin flax for pleasure (I think I've only ever met one
person who's tried it) as the plants are messy to prepare and the fibres are
hard on the hands. But it does make very strong and durable cloth. Apart
from her day job, so to speak, Rahab probably helped to support the family
whose safety she was so concerned for, and my guess would be that like the
woman in Proverbs 31 she spun and wove her flax to make clothes for them and
perhaps to sell too.

Margaret Wilkins
Walsall, UK

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