Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Desert Tabernacle and its Corner Boards







1) Western Wall Corner Boards of the Tent



וּשְׁנֵי קְרָשִׁים תַּעֲשֶׂה, לִמְקֻצְעֹת הַמִּשְׁכָּן--בַּיַּרְכָתָיִם
וְיִהְיוּ תֹאֲמִם, מִלְּמַטָּה, וְיַחְדָּו יִהְיוּ תַמִּים עַל-רֹאשׁוֹ, אֶל-הַטַּבַּעַת הָאֶחָת; כֵּן יִהְיֶה לִשְׁנֵיהֶם, לִשְׁנֵי הַמִּקְצֹעֹת יִהְיוּ.
--26 שְׁמוֹת

And two boards shall thou make for the corners of the tabernacle in the hinder part. And two parts of them shall be connected at the bottom, and in like manner two parts of them shall be connected at the top thereof, to form one hollow cylinder; thus shall it be for them both; they shall be for the two corners.
--Exodus 26:23-26:24

Each corner board was made out of two regular boards of the same length, height, thickness and design as the rest of the boards of the tent. These two regular boards were bended into two hollow semi-cylinders and, when connected together, would form one hollow cylinder that would become a corner board. Each such hollow cylindrical corner board would be 10 cubits in height, with outside diameter of 1 cubit, inside diameter of 3/π=0.9549 cubits and thickness of 0.5-(1.5/π)=0.0225 cubits.

Thus, the tent was made out of 48 parts and 50 boards (46 straight boards and 4 curved boards that would form two corner boards)

2) Tents’ Pillars



וְעָשִׂיתָ פָרֹכֶת, תְּכֵלֶת וְאַרְגָּמָן וְתוֹלַעַת שָׁנִי--וְשֵׁשׁ מָשְׁזָר; מַעֲשֵׂה חֹשֵׁב יַעֲשֶׂה אֹתָהּ, כְּרֻבִים.
וְנָתַתָּה אֹתָהּ, עַל-אַרְבָּעָה עַמּוּדֵי שִׁטִּים, מְצֻפִּים זָהָב, וָוֵיהֶם זָהָב--עַל-אַרְבָּעָה, אַדְנֵי-כָסֶף.
שְׁמוֹת --26

And thou shall make a veil of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen; with cherubim the work of the skilful workman shall it be made. And thou shall hang it upon four pillars of acacia overlaid with gold, their hooks being of gold, upon four sockets of silver.
--Exodus 26:31-32

Four pillars inside the Tent were located on the south-north centerline of the 7th boards, counting from the western wall. Pillars were essentially the golden-plated hollow wooden cylinders 10 cubits tall, 0.5 cubits of outside diameter, 1.5/π=0.4774 cubits of inside diameter and 0.5-(1.5/π)=0.0225 cubits thick. Distance between the center of a pillar to the adjacent pillar (or to the wall of the Tent) was 2 cubits. The veil hanged down the pillars into the Ark part of the Tent.

וְעָשִׂיתָ מָסָךְ לְפֶתַח הָאֹהֶל, תְּכֵלֶת וְאַרְגָּמָן וְתוֹלַעַת שָׁנִי וְשֵׁשׁ מָשְׁזָר, מַעֲשֵׂה, רֹקֵם.
וְעָשִׂיתָ לַמָּסָךְ, חֲמִשָּׁה עַמּוּדֵי שִׁטִּים, וְצִפִּיתָ אֹתָם זָהָב, וָוֵיהֶם זָהָב; וְיָצַקְתָּ לָהֶם, חֲמִשָּׁה אַדְנֵי נְחֹשֶׁת.
שְׁמוֹת – 26

And thou shall make a screen for the door of the Tent, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, the work of the weaver in colors. And thou shall make for the screen five pillars of acacia, and overlay them with gold; their hooks shall be of gold; and thou shall cast five sockets of brass for them.
-- Exodus 26:36-37

Five pillars were located on the eastern edge, essentially forming the entrance of the Tent. Pillars were the golden-plated hollow cylinders 10 cubits tall, 0.5 cubits of outside diameter, 1.5/π=0.4774 cubits of inside diameter and 0.5-(1.5/π)=0.0225 cubits thick. Distance between the center of a pillar to the adjacent pillar was 2.5 cubits.

The Tent screen door hanged on the pillars outside, facing east.



3) Courtyard Dimensions

אֹרֶךְ הֶחָצֵר מֵאָה בָאַמָּה וְרֹחַב חֲמִשִּׁים בַּחֲמִשִּׁים, וְקֹמָה חָמֵשׁ אַמּוֹת--שֵׁשׁ מָשְׁזָר; וְאַדְנֵיהֶם, נְחֹשֶׁת.
שְׁמוֹת --27

The length of the court shall be a hundred cubits, and the breadth fifty everywhere, and the height five cubits of fine twined linen, and their sockets of brass.
---Exodus 27:18

Dimensions of the courtyard are not given explicitly in the “cubits of length”. Instead they are given in the form of geometry, “cubits of fabric (linen)” and the number of pillars. From the original description and simple mathematical calculations, dimensions of the courtyard come to be 120 cubits by 60 cubits, with 60 hollow wooden cylindrical pillars 5 cubits tall, 0.5-(1.5/p)=0.0225 cubits thick, 1 cubit of outside diameter and 3/p=0.9549 cubits of inside diameter. Each pillar was made out of two equal parts.

Distance between the centers of a pillar to the adjacent pillar was exactly 6 cubits. Each piece of linen that hanged between pillars was 5 cubits wide by 5 cubits long. Connecting silver hanger links between each two pillars were also 5 cubits long each

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