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Jezebel’s hair

What’s with Jezebel’s hair? I put a wig on her, but was she really using curlers, wigs, or what?

And do we care? I heard preachers who cared. They read to me that “Jezebel … painted her face, and tired her head…” and explained that “tired” was the KJV word for round things or 2 Kings 9:30 Jezebel ... put on eye makeup, arranged her hair and looked out a window. Hair: What's with Jezebel's hair? Did she use hair curlers or wigs? 2 Kings 9:30 Jezebel ... put on eye makeup, arranged her hair and looked out a window.curlers in her hair. So I had fun picturing tiny tires used as hair curlers.

Then commentators stole my fun. They insisted “tired” is the Old English form of “attired” which means dressing something up to make it look good.

So why look good?

Here’s what I read between the lines: Back in Ramoth Gilead, they blew a trumpet and shouted, “Jehu is king!” Yet after Jehu killed King Joram, Joram’s grandmother Jezebel still barred his way to the throne. I see Jehu rolling into her courtyard looking to smash her like an old icon to make way for his new rule.

Seduce Jehu

Hair: What's with Jezebel's hair? Did she use hair curlers or wigs? 2 Kings 9:30 Jezebel ... put on eye makeup, arranged her hair and looked out a window.

Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, Bournemouth, UK

Some of my favorite preachers have Jezebel getting all gussied up to foil Jehu’s plan by seducing him. Yet I find it a stretch to think the dead king’s grandmother looked in the mirror and thought paint and powder could make her 50 or 60-year-old face look seductive. (Get her age like this: How old was she when she married Ahab? 12? 20? Plus how many years until backgroundclothtan-2-kings-9-30-copyAhab became king: 10? Then add the reigns of Ahab, Ahazia, and Joram — 22 + 2 + 12.)

Go out looking like a queen

It’s easier for me to think that Jezebel, like Cleopatra and Mary Queen of get-chapter-1-freeScots, wanted to go out looking like a queen. So she made up her face in royal style and adjusted her best royal wig. All to be smashed under Jehu’s horses.

1. When did you hear sermons about Jezebel curling her hair?
2. What other scriptures go with this idea?
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4 Responses to Jezebel’s hair

  1. Gary E Dougherty August 29, 2017 at 11:12 AM #

    I don’t suppose that Jacob putting fur on his would pass as a wig ? But had the idea .. (smile) … 🙂

  2. Dave Parks August 29, 2017 at 4:09 PM #

    Jezebel lost her wig! My good friends, Randy and Judy, alerted me to a bit of history: People wore wigs in France in the 1700s, but not in the Old Testament.

  3. Gary E Dougherty August 29, 2017 at 10:11 PM #

    I’m no scholar on wigs but this from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wig

    Ancient use:

    In Egyptian society men and women commonly had clean shaven or close cropped hair and often wore wigs. The ancient Egyptians created the wig to shield shaved, hairless heads from the sun. They also wore the wigs on top of their hair using beeswax and resin to keep the wigs in place. Wealthy Egyptian would wear elaborate wigs and scented cones of animal fat on top of their wigs.

    Other ancient cultures, including the Assyrians, Phoenicians, Jews in ancient Israel, Greeks and Romans, also used wigs as an everyday fashion.

    • Dave Parks August 29, 2017 at 10:22 PM #

      Thanks, Gary! Maybe I can let her keep that headpiece after all.

      I never thought to Google it. I could not find any mention of wigs in the Old Testament, so I gave it up.

      Scented cones of animal fat — That’s what I was planning for my next wig, Gary.

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Elijah

Elijah