Illustrated Bible History

Ancient Bible Manners and Customs - Waistcloth

Man Wearing Tunic with Girdle and Tassles Man Wearing Tunic with Girdle and Tassles
This 8th Century BC relief of a man playing a lyre is from the palace at Shamal. He is wearing a tunic with a girdle fastened by a clasp. Notice the tassles at the bottom dangling in groups of three. The prophet Jeremiah mentions the waistcloth: Jeremiah 13:11 "For as the wastecloth clings to the loins of a man, so I made the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah cling to me, says the Lord."
Man Wearing a Waistcloth Man Wearing a Waistcloth
The waistcloth or loin-cloth was different than the girdle. The waistcloth was a strip of cloth or leather that was wound several times around the waist with the ends hanging down over the thigh. This sketch reveals someone from 701 BC of the city of Lachish. It is from a relief of Sennacherib discovered at Nineveh. The prophet Jeremiah said that the northern Kingdom of Israel would be destroyed: Jeremiah 13:10 "and shall be like this waistcloth, which is good for nothing"