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Baldness
Bald • Tonsure
Dictionaries
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Baldness
Baldness. Condition of having little or no hair on the scalp. Natural baldness due to age is referred to only indirectly in the Bible, where it is contrasted with baldness due to leprosy (Lv 13:40–42). The Israelites were forbidden to shave their heads or shape their beard in ways that resembled pagan
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Baldness; Make Bald; Bald Head; etc
Baldness; Make Bald; Bald Head; etc. [Heb. qorḥâ (Isa. 3:24; Ezk. 7:18; etc.), qāraḥ (Jer. 16:6; Ezk. 27:31; etc.), qērē (a)ḥ (Lev. 13:40; 2 K. 2:23), qāraḥaṯ (Lev. 13:42f), gabbaḥaṯ (Lev. 13:42f), gibbē (a)ḥ (Lev. 13:41)]; NEB also SHAVE, SHORN, “hair is torn,” etc.; TONSURE [qorḥâ]
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
Baldness
BALDNESS Condition of having little or no hair on the scalp. Natural baldness due to age is referred to only indirectly in the Bible, where it is contrasted with baldness due to leprosy (Lv 13:40–42). The Israelites were forbidden to shave their heads or shape their beard in ways that resembled pagan
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
Baldness
baldness, in the Bible, a condition that may signify deprivation (Isa. 3:24), defeat (15:2), repentance (22:12), or existence under the threat of destruction (Jer. 47:5; Ezek. 7:18; Amos 8:10). Baldness could result from natural hair loss (Lev. 13:40–41) and, when that was the case, calling attention
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
Baldness
BALDNESS. Mentioned infrequently in the OT and not at all in the NT, natural baldness was probably uncommon in biblical times. Semites or Asiatics are usually depicted in ancient Near Eastern art with long hair and beards. Baldness was considered a defect which detracted from one’s beauty (Isa 3:24),
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Bald(Ness)
Bald (Ness)The biblical vocabulary of baldness refers to several phenomena. Natural hair loss from the head (qaraḥ) or the forehead (gibbēaḥ) is found in males. Hair loss associated with disease processes and self-inflicted baldness are found in both genders.Baldness may be an ordinary condition
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Bald(ness)
Bald (ness). Being bald on the forehead (Heb. gabbaḥaṯ) or on top of the head (Heb. qāraḥaṯ) as such did not constitute for the Israelites a sign of uncleanness (Lev. 13:40–42). However, if baldness were the result of incipient leprosy, then it was considered ceremonial uncleanness (vv. 43–44).
Catholic Bible Dictionary
Baldness
BALDNESS Lack of hair on the scalp. Baldness was often viewed in the Old Testament as a curse (Isa 3:24; Ezek 7:18; Amos 8:10) and shameful, especially among women (Isa 3:24; 15:2). On the other hand, the prophet Elisha was bald, and forty-two boys of Bethel were ripped to pieces by bears for mocking
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
tonsure
tonsure. The shaving of all or part of the head, traditionally a distinctive feature of monks and clerics in the RC Church; it was formerly prescribed by Canon Law (cf. CIC (1917), can. 136) for all clerics, except in places where, as in England and USA, it was not in accordance with popular usage.
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Baldness
Baldness. Natural baldness seems to have been uncommon, since it exposed people to public derision. Lev. 13:29; 2 Kings 2:23; Isa. 3:24; 15:2; Jer. 47:5; Ezek. 7:18. Artificial baldness marked the conclusion of a Nazarite’s vow, Num. 6:9; Acts 18:18, and was a sign of mourning.
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
Baldness
BALDNESS. In Scripture baldness is mentioned as a defect, interfering with personal beauty; and the more naturally so, as the hair was frequently allowed to grow with peculiar luxuriance as an ornament. Natural baldness appears to have been uncommon and is alluded to as a mark of squalor and misery (Isa.
Easton’s Bible Dictionary
Baldness
Baldnessfrom natural causes was uncommon (2 Kings 2:23; Isa. 3:24). It was included apparently under “scab” and “scurf,” which disqualified for the priesthood (Lev. 21:20). The Egyptians were rarely subject to it. This probably arose from their custom of constantly shaving the head, only allowing the
Key passages
2 Sa 10:4–5

Then Hanun took the servants of David, and he shaved off half of their beards and cut their garments off in the middle up to their buttocks, then sent them away. When they told David, he sent to meet them, for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, “Remain in Jericho until your beards …

1 Ch 19:4–5

So Hanun took the servants of David and shaved them and cut off their garments at the middle, up to the buttocks, and sent them away. And they went and told David concerning the men, and he inquired of them, for the men were very disgraced. And the king said, “Dwell in Jericho until your beards …

Is 3:24

And this shall happen: There will be a stench instead of perfume, and a rope instead of a sash, and baldness instead of a well-set hairdo, and a clothing wrap of sackcloth instead of a rich robe, branding instead of beauty.

Is 7:20

On that day, the Lord will shave the head and the hair of the feet with a razor of the one hired from beyond the river—with the king of Assyria—and it will even take off the beard.

Is 15:2

It has gone up to the house, and Dibon to the high places for weeping over Nebo, and Moab wails over Medeba. Every head is bald, every beard is shaved.