Genesis 30:37 And Jacob took him rods of green poplar, and of the hazel and chesnut tree; and pilled white strakes in them, and made the white appear which [was] in the rods.
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Heb. luz, (Gen. 30:37), a nutbearing tree. The Hebrew word is rendered in the Vulgate by amygdalinus, "the almond-tree," which is probably correct. That tree flourishes in Syria.
a native of Syria and Israel. In form, blossoms, and fruit it resembles the peach tree. Its blossoms are of a very pale pink colour, and appear before its leaves. Its Hebrew name, "shaked", signifying "wakeful, hastening," is given to it on account of its putting forth its blossoms so early, generally in February, and sometimes even in January. In Eccl. 12:5, it is referred to as illustrative, probably, of the haste with which old age comes. There are others, however, who still contend for the old interpretation here. "The almond tree bears its blossoms in the midst of winter, on a naked, leafless stem, and these blossoms (reddish or flesh-coloured in the beginning) seem at the time of their fall exactly like white snow-flakes. In this way the almond blossom is a very fitting symbol of old age, with its silvery hair and its wintry, dry, barren, unfruitful condition." In Jer. 1:11 "I see a rod of an almond tree [shaked]...for I will hasten [shaked] my word to perform it" the word is used as an emblem of promptitude. Jacob desired his sons (Gen. 43:11) to take with them into Egypt of the best fruits of the land, almonds, etc., as a present to Joseph, probably because this tree was not a native of Egypt. Aaron's rod yielded almonds (Num. 17:8; Heb. 9:4). Moses was directed to make certain parts of the candlestick for the ark of carved work "like unto almonds" (Ex. 25:33, 34). The Hebrew word "luz", translated "hazel" in the Authorized Version (Gen. 30:37), is rendered in the Revised Version "almond." It is probable that "luz" denotes the wild almond, while "shaked" denotes the cultivated variety.