( Isaiah 28:25 Isaiah 28:27 ), the rendering of the Hebrew ketsah , "without doubt the Nigella sativa, a small annual of the order Ranunculacece, which grows wild in the Mediterranean countries, and is cultivated in Egypt and Syria for its seed." It is rendered in margin of the Revised Version "black cummin." The seeds are used as a condiment.
In Ezekiel 4:9 this word is the rendering of the Hebrew kussemeth (incorrectly rendered "rye" in the Authorized Version of Exodus 9:32 and Isaiah 28:25 , but "spelt" in the Revised Version). The reading "fitches" here is an error; it should be "spelt."
A species of grain.
For the FITCHES are not threshed with a threshing instrument, neither is a cart wheel turned about upon the cummin; but the FITCHES are beaten out with a staff, and the cummin with a rod. ( Isaiah 28:27 )
(i.e. VETCHES), without doubt the Nigella sativa , an herbaceous annual plant belonging to the natural order Ranunculaceoe (the buttercup family), which grows in the south of Europe and in the north of Africa. Its black seeds are used like pepper, and have almost as pungent a taste. The Syrians sprinkle these seeds over their flat cakes before they are baked. [SEE RYE] [E] indicates this entry was also found in Easton's Bible Dictionary
fich'-iz (the English word "fitch" is the same as "vetch"):
(1) qetsach (Isaiah 28:25,27; the Revised Version, margin has "black cummin" (Nigella sativa)). This is the "nutmeg flower," an annual herb (Natural Order, Ranunculaceae), the black seeds of which are sprinkled over some kinds of bread in Palestin. They were used as a condiment by the ancient Greeks and Romans. These seeds have a warm aromatic flavor and are carminative in their properties, assisting digestion. They, like all such plants which readily yield their seed, are still beaten out with rods. The contrast between the stouter staff for the "fitches" and the lighter rod for the cummin is all the more noticeable when the great similarity of the two seeds is noticed.
(2) kuccemim (pl.) (Ezekiel 4:9) the Revised Version (British and American) "spelt" (which see).
E. W. G. Masterman
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