Bitter Herbs

The Israelites were commanded to eat the Paschal lamb "with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs." (Exodus 12:8) These "bitter herbs" consisted of such plants as chicory, bitter cresses, hawkweeds, sow-thistles and wild lettuces, which grow abundantly in the peninsula of Sinai, in Palestine and in Egypt. The purpose of this observance was to recall to the minds of the Israelites their deliverance from the bitter bondage of the Egyptians.