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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

al'-oz, lin-al'-oz, lig-nal'-oz ('ahalim, Numbers 24:6, translation "lign-aloes" (= lignum aloes, "wood of aloes"), Proverbs 7:17; 'ahaloth, Psalm 45:8 Songs 4:14; aloe, John 19:39): Mentioned as a substance for perfuming garments (Psalm 45:8) and beds (Proverbs 7:17). In Songs 4:14, it occurs in a list of the most precious spices. The most memorable use of aloes as a spice is in John 19:39: "There came also Nicodemus, he who at the first came to him at night, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds." This was an immense quantity and if the aloes bore any large proportion to the myrrh the mixture must have been purchased at a very high cost. The most difficult mention of aloes is the earliest where (Numbers 24:5, 6) Balaam in his blessing on Israel exclaims-"How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, Thy tabernacles, O Israel! As valleys are they spread forth, As gardens by the river-side, As lign-aloes which Yahweh hath planted, As cedar-trees beside the waters." As the aloes in question grow in East Asia it is difficult to see how Balaam could have come to speak of them as living trees. Post (HDB, I, 69) suggests that they may possibly have been growing at that time in the Jordan valley; this is both improbable and unnecessary. Balaam need have had no actual tree in his mind's eye but may have mentioned the aloe as a tree famous over the Orient for its preciousness. That the reference is poetical rather than literal may be supposed by the expression in the next verse "cedar-trees beside the waters"-a situation very unnatural for the high-mountain-loving cedar. Yet another explanation is that the Hebrew has been altered and that 'elim, "terebinths" instead of 'ahalim, "aloes" stood in the original text. The aloe wood of the Bible is eaglewood-so misnamed by the Portuguese who confused the Malay name for it (agora) with the Latin aquila, "eagle"-a product of certain trees of the Natural Order Aquilariaceae, growing in Southeast Asia The two most valued varieties are Aquilaria malaccensis and Aloes agallocha-both fine spreading trees. The resin, which gives the fragrant quality to the wood, is formed almost entirely in the heart wood; logs are buried, the outer part decays while the inner, saturated with the resin, forms the "eagle wood" or "aloe wood" of commerce; "aloes" being the same wood in a finely powdered condition. To the Arabs this wood is known as `ud. It shows a beautiful graining and takes a high polish.

These aloes must be clearly distinguished from the well-known medicinal aloes, of ancient fame. This is a resin from Aloes socatrina, and allied species, of the Natural Order Liliaceae, originally from the island of Socotra, but now from Barbados, the Cape of Good Hope and other places. The "American aloe" (Agave americana) which today is cultivated in many parts of Palestine, is also quite distinct from the Biblical plant.

E. W. G. Masterman

250. aloe -- aloe
... aloe. Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine Transliteration: aloe Phonetic Spelling:
(al-o-ay') Short Definition: aloes Definition: aloes, the powdered fragrant aloe ...
// - 6k
Strong's Hebrew
174. ahalim -- the aloe (a tree)
... the aloe (a tree). Transliteration: ahalim Phonetic Spelling: (a-haw-leem') Short
Definition: aloes. ... root Definition the aloe (a tree) NASB Word Usage aloes (4). ...
/hebrew/174.htm - 6k

Spikenard and Saffron; Calamus and Cinnamon with all the Trees of ...
... CHAPTER IV. 14. Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon with all the trees
of Lebanon; myrrh and aloes with all the chief ointments. ...
/.../guyon/song of songs of solomon/14 spikenard and saffron calamus.htm

Whether Christ was Buried in a Becoming Manner?
... But it seems to savor of waste that in order to bury Christ Nicodemus came "bringing
a mixture of myrrh and aloes about a hundred pounds weight," as recorded ...
/.../aquinas/summa theologica/whether christ was buried in.htm

Chapter iv.
... Cypress with spikenard.14. Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon with all
trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes with all the chief spices.14. ...
// of songs of solomon/chapter iv.htm

A Believer's Privilege at Death
... There is a far greater proportion of bitterness than pleasure in this life. I have
perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.' Proverbs 7:77. ...
/.../ body of divinity/2 a believers privilege at.htm

Texts Explained; Secondly, Psalm Xlv. 7, 8 Whether the Words ...
... For this is his meaning in the Psalm, All thy garments [2091] smell of myrrh, aloes,
and cassia;' and it is represented by Nicodemus and by Mary's company ...
/.../chapter xii texts explained secondly psalm.htm

The Gladness of the Man of Sorrows
... All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory
palaces, whereby they have made thee glad.""Psalm 45:7, 8. ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 9 1863/the gladness of the man.htm

On the Words, and Rose Again from the Dead on the Third Day, and ...
... And what will He that is buried in the garden say? I have gathered My myrrh with
My spices: and again, Myrrh and aloes, with all chief spices [1709] . ...
/.../cyril/lectures of s cyril of jerusalem/lecture xiv on the words.htm

Supposing Him to be the Gardener
... from the heat of the sun under the overhanging boughs of an olive, I cast my eyes
upon palms and bananas, roses and camellias, oranges and aloes, lavender and ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 29 1883/supposing him to be the.htm

The Blood of the Covenant
... His subject had been the covenant, and when he prayed his garments were sweet with
the myrrh and aloes and cassia among which his meditations had conducted him ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 20 1874/the blood of the covenant.htm

Apprehending God
... "O taste and see that the Lord is good." "All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes,
and cassia, out of the ivory palaces." "My sheep hear my voice." "Blessed ...
// pursuit of god/iv apprehending god.htm

ATS Bible Dictionary

Or more properly, ALOE, and East Indian tree, that grows about eight or ten feet high, and yields a rich perfume, Psalm 45:8 Proverbs 7:17 So 4:14. This tree or wood was called by the Greeks Agallochon, and has been known to moderns by the names of Lign-aloe, aloe-wood, paradise-wood, eagle-wood, etc. Modern botanists distinguish two kinds: the one grows in Cochin China, Siam, and China, is never exported, and is of so great rarity in India, as to be worth its weight in gold. The tree is represented as large, with an erect trunk and lofty branches. The other or more common species is called garo in the East Indies, and is the wood of a tree growing in the Moluccas, the Excoecaria Agallocha of Linnaeus. The leaves are like those of a pear-tree; and it has a milky juice, which, as the tree grows old, hardens into a fragrant resin. The trunk is knotty, crooked, and usually hollow. Aloe-wood is said by Herodotus to have been used by the Egyptians for embalming dead bodies, and Nicodemus brought it, mingled with myrrh, to embalm the body of our Lord, John 19:39. This perfume, it will be seen, is something altogether different from the aloes of the apothecaries, which is a bitter resin, extracted from a low herb.

Easton's Bible Dictionary
(Hebrews `ahalim), a fragrant wood (Numbers 24:6; Psalm 45:8; Proverbs 7:17; Cant. 4:14), the Aquilaria agallochum of botanists, or, as some suppose, the costly gum or perfume extracted from the wood. It is found in China, Siam, and Northern India, and grows to the height sometimes of 120 feet. This species is of great rarity even in India. There is another and more common species, called by Indians aghil, whence Europeans have given it the name of Lignum aquile, or eagle-wood. Aloewood was used by the Egyptians for embalming dead bodies. Nicodemus brought it (pounded aloe-wood) to embalm the body of Christ (John 19:39); but whether this was the same as that mentioned elsewhere is uncertain.

The bitter aloes of the apothecary is the dried juice of the leaves Aloe vulgaris.

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
(n.) Plural of Aloe.
Aloes (5 Occurrences)
... The bitter aloes of the apothecary is the dried juice of the leaves Aloe vulgaris.
Noah Webster's Dictionary. ... Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. ALOES; LIGNALOES. ...
/a/aloes.htm - 12k

Lign-aloes (1 Occurrence)
Lign-aloes. Lignaloes, Lign-aloes. Ligure . Easton's Bible Dictionary ... (see ALOES).
Noah Webster's Dictionary. 1. (n.) Aloes wood, or agallochum. ...
/l/lign-aloes.htm - 7k

... (only in pl., Hebrews `ahalim), a perfume derived from some Oriental tree (Numbers
24:6), probably the agallochum or aloe-wood. (see ALOES). ...ALOES; LIGNALOES. ...
/l/lignaloes.htm - 10k

Myrrh (22 Occurrences)
... Saviour; in Mark 15:23 it is offered mingled with wine as an anesthetic to the
suffering Redeemer, and in John 19:39 a "mixture of myrrh and aloes" is brought ...
/m/myrrh.htm - 18k

Cinnamon (4 Occurrences)
... In Exodus 30:23 it is one of the ingredients of the "holy anointing oil"; in Proverbs
7:17 it is, along with myrrh and aloes, a perfume for a bed; in Songs 4 ...
/c/cinnamon.htm - 10k

... The American aloe (Argave Americana)-quite a different plant be it noted from either
the ALOES (which see) of the Bible or the well-known medicinal aloes-has ...
/b/botany.htm - 38k

Cassia (3 Occurrences)
... India. (2.) Hebrew pl. ketzi'oth (Psalm 45:8). Mentioned in connection
with myrrh and aloes as being used to scent garments. It ...
/c/cassia.htm - 9k

Nicodemus (5 Occurrences)
... His wealth enabled him to provide the "mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred
pounds," with which the body of Jesus was embalmed (John 19:39). ...
/n/nicodemus.htm - 14k

Cedar (61 Occurrences)
... In Numbers 24:6 -"as cedar-trees beside the waters"-the reference must, as is most
probable, be purely poetical (see ALOES) or the 'arazim must signify some ...
/c/cedar.htm - 37k

Spices (64 Occurrences)
... (5) (aroma, "spices" (Mark 16:1, the King James Version "sweet spices"; Luke
23:56; Luke 24:1 John 19:40; in John 19:39 defined as a mixture of aloes and myrrh ...
/s/spices.htm - 32k

Bible Concordance
Aloes (5 Occurrences)

John 19:39 Nicodemus, who at first came to Jesus by night, also came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred Roman pounds.

Numbers 24:6 As valleys they are spread forth, as gardens by the riverside, as aloes which Yahweh has planted, as cedar trees beside the waters.

Psalms 45:8 All your garments smell like myrrh, aloes, and cassia. Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made you glad.

Proverbs 7:17 I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon.

Song of Songs 4:14 spikenard and saffron, calamus and cinnamon, with every kind of incense tree; myrrh and aloes, with all the best spices,



Aloes in Embalming the Dead

Aloes used As Perfume

Aloes: Lign-Aloes

Related Terms

Lign-aloes (1 Occurrence)


Myrrh (22 Occurrences)

Cinnamon (4 Occurrences)


Cassia (3 Occurrences)

Nicodemus (5 Occurrences)

Cedar (61 Occurrences)

Spices (64 Occurrences)

Valleys (38 Occurrences)

Visited (40 Occurrences)

Nard (5 Occurrences)

Nicode'mus (5 Occurrences)

Ligure (2 Occurrences)

Lign (1 Occurrence)

Gardens (14 Occurrences)

Weight (143 Occurrences)

Finest (23 Occurrences)

River-side (2 Occurrences)

Riverside (4 Occurrences)

River's (5 Occurrences)

Eighty (36 Occurrences)

Earlier (48 Occurrences)

Mixture (16 Occurrences)

Pound (13 Occurrences)

Perfumed (10 Occurrences)

Palaces (37 Occurrences)

Pounds (16 Occurrences)

Bitter (203 Occurrences)

Cedar-trees (11 Occurrences)

Cypresses (6 Occurrences)

Calamus (5 Occurrences)

Cane (11 Occurrences)


Adorned (20 Occurrences)

Aloe-trees (1 Occurrence)

Safron (1 Occurrence)

Spice (25 Occurrences)

Saffron (1 Occurrence)

Spikenard (4 Occurrences)

Strings (11 Occurrences)

Seventy-five (12 Occurrences)

Fragrant (30 Occurrences)

Stringed (34 Occurrences)

Mixed (96 Occurrences)

Bearing (150 Occurrences)

Bringing (288 Occurrences)

Bedstead (1 Occurrence)

Whereby (46 Occurrences)

Bedchamber (6 Occurrences)

Ivory (13 Occurrences)

Planted (105 Occurrences)

Afar (98 Occurrences)

Frankincense (22 Occurrences)

Seventy (97 Occurrences)

Joseph (248 Occurrences)

Bed (142 Occurrences)

Stretch (73 Occurrences)

Burial (25 Occurrences)

Roll (57 Occurrences)

Trees (179 Occurrences)

Stretched (234 Occurrences)

Couch (55 Occurrences)

Sprinkled (55 Occurrences)

Smell (77 Occurrences)

River (189 Occurrences)

Hundred (526 Occurrences)

Instruments (136 Occurrences)

Spread (257 Occurrences)

Roman (26 Occurrences)

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