Myrrh

This substance is mentioned in (Exodus 30:23) as one of the ingredients of the "oil of holy ointment:" in (Esther 2:12) as one of the substances used in the purification of women; in (Psalms 45:8; Proverbs 7:17) and in several passages in Canticles, as a perfume. The Greek occurs in (Matthew 2:11) among the gifts brought by the wise men to the infant Jesus and in (Mark 15:23) it is said that "wine mingled with myrrh" was offered to but refused by, our Lord on the cross. Myrrh was also used for embalming. See John 19;39 and Herod. ii. 86. The Balsamodendron myrrha, which produces the myrrh of commerce, has a wood and bark which emit a strong odor; the gum which exudes from the bark is at first oily, but becomes hard by exposure to the air. (This myrrh is in small yellowish or white globules or tears. The tree is small, with a stunted trunk, covered with light-gray bark, It is found in Arabia Felix. The myrrh of (Genesis 37:25) was probably ladalzum, a highly-fragrant resin and volatile oil used as a cosmetic, and stimulative as a medicine. It is yielded by the cistus, known in Europe as the rock rose, a shrub with rose-colored flowers, growing in Palestine and along the shores of the Mediterranean.--ED.) For wine mingled with myrrh see Gall.