No longer on the fringe

Everything you ever wanted to know about 'techelet,' the dye created from the Murex trunculus to color ritual garments.

By
March 21, 2013 13:26
Murex trunculus

Murex trunculus521. (photo credit: Courtesy)

 
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Acord of sky blue thread – called “techelet” in the Bible – must be tied among the ritual fringes worn by observant Jews (Numbers 15:37- 40). Despite the frequency with which this command is repeated – it’s part of the paragraphs following the twice daily obligatory recitation of the Shema – the secret of creating the required specific blue was lost for more than a millennium.

Rather than use the wrong color, plain white fringes were substituted for blue ones.

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