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MULBERRY:

 

The berry-like fruit of the black or common mulberry (Morus nigra). It is not mentioned in the Hebrew Old Testament, although in II Sam. v. 23-24 "beka'im" is erroneously explained as "mulberry-trees" by the Rabbis and some commentators (Luther and others; Löw, "Aramäische Pflanzennamen," pp. 71, 209, 236). But the "blood" of the mulberry, its blood-red juice, is mentioned in I Macc. vi. 34. This of course does not prove that the tree was not cultivated much earlier in Palestine. Its name in post-Biblical Hebrew is "tut" (Ma'as. i. 2), which has been preserved in the modern Arabic "tut shami." The tree is cultivated on account of its black, juicy berry, which greatlyresembles the blackberry and is very refreshing. The juice is made into a popular wine (comp. Post, "Flora of Western Palestine," p. 729; Anderlind, in "Z. D. P. V." xi. 81 et seq.). The white mulberry (Morus alba) was introduced into Palestine long after the commencement of the common era.