eb'-o-ni (hobhnim (pl. only), vocalization uncertain; compare Arabic abnus):
Mentioned (Ezekiel 27:15) along with ivory as merchandise of Tyre brought by the men of Dedan. This is the heavy, black, heart-wood of various species of Diospyros, natives of Southern India and Ceylon; the best kind is obtained from D. ebenum.
The sap-wood, being white and valueless, is cut away, but the trunks are sufficiently large to leave blocks of heart-wood 2 ft. in diameter and 10 or more ft. long. Ebony was used by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, as well as the Phoenicians, for various purposes; it was frequently inlaid with ivory. In Europe it has been a favorite for cabinet-making down to recent times.
E. W. G. Masterman
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