Wean (גָּמִל from the completion of the infant at that time) Most Oriental mothers suckle their children much longer than is usual in Europe, and the same custom seems to have prevailed among the ancient Hebrews. When Samuel was weaned, he was old enough to be left with Eli for the service of the tabernacle (1Sa 1:24). As no public provision was made for the children of priests and Levites until they were three years of age, it is probable that they were not weaned sooner (2Ch 31:16; 2Ch 2 Macc. 7:27). In India, a boy is not taken from the breast until he is three years of age; but throughout the East a girl is generally weaned within the first or second year. "Abraham made a great feast when Isaac was weaned" (Ge 21:8), and the same custom prevails among the Hindûs and Persians. SEE CHILD.

Definition of wean

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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