And Samson said unto them, I will now put forth a riddle unto you: if you can certainly declare it to me within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothing:
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George Leo Haydock
Riddle. Such obscure and ingenious questions were much liked in the East, 3 Kings x. 1. The Egyptians concealed the mysteries of their religion, and Pythagoras his choicest maxims under them. (St. Clement of Alexandria, strom. 5.) The Greeks proposed the griphous at feasts, determining some reward or punishment to those who succeeded or failed to explain them. Athenæus (x. 22,) relates that Simonides proposed this to his companions, after he had seen a blacksmith asleep, with a skin of wine and a craw-fish beside him. "The father of the kid, which eateth all sorts of herbs, and the miserable fish knocked their heads against each other, and he who has received upon his eye-lids the son of the night, would not feed the minister, who kills the oxen of king Bacchus. "He could not get his ax mended. The ancients kept their wine in skins of kids, whence he alludes to the bottle of wine, near the miserable craw-fish or lobster.
Shirts. Hebrew sedinim, "sin dons "the garment which was worn next the skin, Mark xiv. 51. It was used also by women, (Isaias iii. 23,) and is probably the same which is called a tunic. (Calmet)
Coats. Hebrew, "change of garments. "Some understand new and splendid garments. But Samson complied with his promise, by giving such as he found upon the 30 men, whom he slew, ver. 19. (Haydock)
The custom of making presents of garments has long prevailed in the East. The Turkish emperor still receives and makes such presents to ambassadors. (Calmet)
Their long robes may easily be made to fit any person. (Haydock)