Temple Clothing

  1. Matthew B. Brown. The Gate of Heaven. (American Fork, Utah: Covenant Communications, 1999)

    • Highly recommended. Discusses ritual, symbolism, and temples of the Old and New Testaments. Also contains an appendix that serves as a good introduction to the relationship between the Temple ordinances and Freemasonry.
    • Reviewed briefly in FARMS Review of Books and BYU Studies 39:2 (2000).
    • FAIR Bookstore, Deseret Book.
  2. Temples of the Ancient World. Donald W. Parry and Stephen D. Ricks, eds. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book and FARMS, 1994.) Abbreviated as TAW throughout this page.

    • Large book composed of different articles on the temple, arranged thematically.
    • This is required reading for someone who wants to understand the ancient symbolism and setting of the temple ordinances.
    • Gospelink (requires subscription)
    • Deseret Book.
  3. John Tvedtnes, “Priestly Clothing in Biblical Times,” TAW: 649-704.

  4. Stephen D. Ricks, “The Garment of Adam in Jewish, Muslim and Christian Sources.” TAW 705-740.

  5. Blake Ostler, “Clothed Upon: A Unique Aspect of Christian Antiquity.” BYUS 22:1 (1982): 31-45.

  6. John Welch and Claire Foley, “Gammadia on Early Jewish and Christian.”  BYU Studies 36:3 (1996-97): 253-60.

    • (Gammadia is an anglicized plural of gamma, the third letter of the Greek alphabet. Gamma looks like a 90 degree triangle with the hypotenuse removed, and the corner at the top left, one leg going down and one to the right.
    • Gospelink (subscription required). Gammadia section is near the bottom of link. BYU Library Viewer. Free PDF from BYU Studies.
  7. Wilfred Griggs et al., “Evidences of a Christian Population in the Egyptian Fayum and Genetic and Textile Studies of the Akhmim Noble Mummies.” BYU Studies 33:2 (1993): 215-243.

    • Some mummies are dressed in what appears to be priestly clothing for early Christians. Color photos. Abstract here.
    • “Ten of the robes on this burial are plain linen garments, but the many strands of linen ribbon wrapped around the upper half of the body are gathered together into a complex knot. This knot is found on the left shoulder on two of the robes, and on the right shoulder of the remaining eight robes. The symbol of the sacred knot or bow is common in Egypt and elsewhere and may indicate sacerdotal, or priestly, authority. The piece of clothing closest to the body is not usually well preserved, due to the destructive influence of fluids and chemicals remaining in the body. In this burial, as well as a few others, however, the woolen garment next to the skin is sufficiently well preserved for us to observe that small rosettes have been woven into the material in particular locations. There is one rosette over each breast and one on the right leg near the knee, but there is no corresponding rosette on the left leg. Across the lower abdomen, the material also has a hemmed slit about six inches long.” 225-226.
    • Gospelink (subscription required). BYU Library Viewer.
  8. Elder Carlos Asay, “The Temple Garment: An Outer Display of an Inward Commitment.” Ensign, August 1997:19-23.

  9. E. Jan Wilson, “Inside a Sumerian Temple: The Ekishnugal at Ur.” TTE: 303-334, esp. 312-13.

    • Among others, discusses ritual Sumerian clothing and a possible etymological relation to Joseph’s mysterious ketonet passim. This is better known in English as his “coat of many colors” but that translation comes from the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible). No one is sure what the Hebrew means.
    • FARMS transcript (requires subscription)
  10. Hugh Nibley, “Sacred Vestments.”  TAC: 91-138.

  11. Evelyn T. Marshall, “Garments.”  EM: 534-535.

  12. Michael Fordham, “Did the Lord Reject the Fig Leaf Worn by Adam and Eve?”  FAIR paper

  13. Matthew Brown, “Girded about with a Lambskin.” JBMS 6:2 (1997): 124-151.

    • “The publication of the Book of Mormon brought forward the first of many comparisons between the restorational work of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his surrounding environment, including Freemasonry. One point of comparison has been the lambskin apparel mentioned in 3 Nephi 4:7. I will suggest a possible connection between this item of apparel and ritual clothing that was worn in ancient Israel, Egypt, and Mesoamerica. I will also suggest a possible reason for the use of this item of clothing among the secret combinations in the Book of Mormon. Finally, I will discuss the lambskin apron used in Freemasonic ritual.”
  14. David Wiley, “The Forty-day teachings of Christ in the Books of Jeu and the Pistis Sophia: A Gnostic Endowment.”  Newly on-line again, here

    • David Wiley is Associate Professor of Instructional Psychology and Technology at Brigham Young University.
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