With regard to the use of the veil, it is important to observe that it was by no means so general in ancient as in modern times. Much of the scrupulousness in respect of the use of the veil dates from the promulgation of the Koran, which forbade women appearing unveiled except in the presence of their nearest relatives. In ancient times the veil was adopted only in exceptional cases, either as an article of ornamental dress, (Song of Solomon 4:1,3; 6:7) or by betrothed maidens in the presence of their future husbands, especially at the time of the wedding, (Genesis 24:65) or lastly, by women of loose character for purposes of concealment. (Genesis 38:14) Among the Jews of the New Testament age it appears to have been customary for the women to cover their heads (not necessarily their faces) when engaged in public worship.
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