Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Wearing tzitzit, elongated tassels at the fringes of one’s cloak, and donning phylacteries, tefillin, is a notable feature of male Jewish, religious public practice in late antiquity. From Hellenistic times onward, these practices are considered a regular interpretation of biblical commandments and are perceived as Jewish attire. Second Temple and early rabbinic sources mention tzitzit and tefillin as a pair (Let. Aris. 158–159; Jos. Ant. 4.213; t. Ber. 6(7).24, Mekilta dRabbi Ishmael, Shirata 3, on Exod 15:2 reads ת…

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Ottenheijm, Eric, “Tzitzit/Tefillin”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 07 June 2023 <>
First published online: 2018

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