The Hebrews do not appear to have regarded a covering for the head as an essential article of every-day dress. SEE HEADBAND. The earliest notice we have-of such a thing is in connection with the sacerdotal vestments, and in this case it is described as an ornamental appendage "for glory and for beauty" (Ex 28:40). SEE MITER. The absence of any allusion to a head-dress in passages where we should expect to meet with it, as in the trial of jealousy (Nu 5:18), and the regulations regarding the leper (Le 13:45), in both of which the "uncovering of the head" refers undoubtedly to the hair, leads to the inference that it was not ordinarily worn in the Mosaic age; and this is confirmed by the practice, frequently alluded to, of covering the head with the mantle. Even in after times it seems to have been reserved especially for purposes of ornament: thus the tsaniph' (צָנַיŠ) is noticed as being worn by the nobles (Job 29:14), ladies (Isa 3:23), and kings (Isa 62:3), while the peer' (פּאֵר) was an article of holiday dress (Isa 61:3, Auth. Vers. "beauty;" Eze 24:17,23). and was worn at weddings (Isa 61:10): the use of the μίτρα was restricted to similar occasions (Judith 16:8; Bar. 5, 2). The former of these terms undoubtedly describes a kind of turban. its primary sense (צָנִŠ, "to roll around") expresses the folds of linen wound round the head, and its form probably resembled that of the high-priest's mitsne'pheth (a word derived from the same root, and identical in meaning, for in Zec 3:5, tsaniph=mitsnepheth), as described by Josephus (Ant. 3:7, 3). The renderings of the term in the A.V., "hood"- (Isa 3:23), "diadem" (Job 29:14; Isa 62:3), "miter" (Zec 3:5), do not convey the right idea of its-meaning. The other term, peer, primarily means an ornament, and is so rendered in the A.V. (Isa 61:10; see also verse 3, "beauty"), and is specifically applied to the headdress from its ornamental character. SEE DIADEM. It is uncertain what the term properly describes: the modern turban consists of two parts, the kauk, a stiff, round cap occasionally rising to a considerable height, and the shash, a long piece of muslin wound about it (Russell, Aleppo, 1, 104): Josephus's account of the high-priest's head-dress implies a similar construction, for he says that it was made of thick bands of linen doubled round many times and sewn together, the whole covered by a piece of fine linen to conceal the seams. Saalschütz (Archceöl. 1, 27, note) suggests that the tsaniph and the peer represent the shash and the kauk, the latter rising high above the other, and so the most prominent and striking feature. In favor of this explanation it may be remarked that the peer is more particularly connected with the migbaah, the high cap of the ordinary priests, in Ex 39:28, while the tsaniph, as we have seen, resembled the high-priest's miter, in which the cap was concealed by the linen folds. The objection, however, to this explanation is that the etymological force of peer is not brought out: may not that term have applied to the jewels and other ornaments with which the turban is frequently decorated (Russell, 1, 106). The term used for putting on either the tsaniph or the peer is חָבִשׁ to bind round" (Ex 29:9; Le 8:13): hence the words in Eze 16:10, "I girded thee about with fine linen," are to be understood of the turban; and by the use of the same term Jon 2:5 represents the weeds wrapped as a turban round his head. The turban, as now worn in the East, varies very much in shape (Russell's Aleppo, 1, 102). It appears that frequently the robes supplied the place of a headdress, being so ample that they might be thrown over the head at pleasure: the radid and the tsaiph, at all events, were so used, SEE DRESS, and the veil served a similar purpose. SEE VEIL. The ordinary head-dress of the Bedouin consists of the keffyeh, a square handkerchief, generally of red and yellow cotton, or cotton and silk, folded so that three of the corners hang down over the back and shoulders, leaving the face exposed, and bound round the head by a cord (Burckhardt, Notes, 1, 48). It is not improbable that a similar covering was used by the Hebrews on certain occasions: the "kerchief" in Eze 13:18 has been so understood by some writers (Harmer, Observations, 2, 393), though the word more probably refers to a species of veil; and the σιμιλίνθιον τὸ τῆς κεφαλῆς φόρημα), was applicable to the purposes of a head-dress. SEE HANDKERCHIEF. Neither of these cases, however, supplies positive evidence on the point, and the general absence of allusions leads to the inference that the head was usually uncovered, as is still the case in many parts of Arabia (Wellsted, Travels, 1, 73). The introduction of the Greek hat (πέτασος) by Jason, as an article of dress adapted to the gymnasium, was regarded as a national dishonor (2 Macc. 4:12): in shape and material the petasus very much resembled the common felt hats of this country (Smith, Dict. of Ant. s.v. Pileus). SEE BONNET.
The monuments and paintings in the tombs of Egypt supply us with numerous forms of headdresses; and there is no doubt that many of these were the prevailing costume at the period when the Israelites sojourned there. Among the ruins of Persepolis are found numerous sculptures which give the shape of various coverings for the head used by men. The care bestowed upon this part of the toilet among the Assyrians and Babylonians is abundantly illustrated in the volumes of Botta and Layard. "The Assyrian head-dress is described in Eze 23:15, under the terms טַבוּלַים סרוּחֵי 'exceeding in dyed attire;' it is doubtful, however, whether tebulim describes the colored material of the head-dress (tiarae a coloribus quibus tinctae sint); another sense has been assigned to it more appropriate to the description of a turban (fasciis obvolvit, Geseniuti Thesaurus, p. 542). The associated term seruchey expresses the flowing character of the Eastern headdress, as it falls down over the back (Layard, Nineveh, 2, 308). The word rendered 'hats' in Da 3:21 (כִּרבּלָא) properly applies to a cloak"
The שׁבַיסַים., shebisim' (Isa 3:18), rendered in our version "cauls," or, as in the margin, "networks," were most probably some kind of reticulated head-dresses, and so the word is understood in the Talmud. SEE CAUL.
A very peculiar kind of head-dress worn in some parts of Palestine, especially by the Druses of Mount Lebanon, and thought to be referred to by the קֶרֶן, ke'ren, or "horn" of 1Sa 2:1, is the tantura.' It is made of gold or silver, frequently of other metal either gilt or silver-plated, and sometimes of mere wood. The more costly ones are highly ornamented, and occasionally set with jewels; but the length and position of them is that upon which the traveler looks with the greatest interest, as illustrating and explaining a familiar expression of Scripture. The young, the rich, and the vain wear the tantura of great length, standing straight up from the top of the forehead; whereas the humble, the poor, and the aged place it upon the side of the head, much shorter, and spreading at the end like a trumpet. SEE HORN.