White (prop. לָבָן, λευκός). In Canaan persons of distinction were anciently dressed in fine linen of Egypt, and, according to some authors, in silk and rich cloth shaded with the choicest colors. The beauty of these clothes consisted in the fineness and color of the stuffs; and it seems the color most in use among the Israelites, as well as among the Greeks and Romans, was white, not improved by the dyer's art, but the native color of the wool, being most suited to the nature of their laws, which enjoined so many washings and purifications. (Indeed, so early as the days of Hesiod the Greeks considered white as the color in which the celestials appeared: men went to heaven in white clothing [Opera et Diesi 1:198].) The general use of this color seems to be recognised by Solomon in his direction, "Let thy garments be always white" (Ec 9:8). But garments in the native color of wool were not confined to the lower orders; they were also in great esteem among persons of superior station, and are particularly valued in Scripture as the emblem of knowledge and purity, gladness and victory, grace and glory. The priests of Baal were habited in black, a color which appears to have been peculiar to themselves, and which few others in those countries except mourners would choose to wear. In all countries and all ages white has been regarded as the emblem of purity. SEE WHITSUNDAY. Isaiah says, " Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool" (1:15). See the monographs cited by Volbeding, Index Programmatum, page 124. SEE COLOR.