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ALGUM , a tree which cannot be definitely identified. Mentioned among the trees of Lebanon which Hiram, king of Tyre, sent to Solomon for the building of the Temple and the palace (ii Chron. 2:7), it is referred to elsewhere as having been imported from tropical Ophir (ii Chron. 9:10–11; i Kings 10:11, where it is called almog). The Septuagint identifies the tree brought from Lebanon as a species of pine and that from Ophir as apparently a species of Tuja, while the Jerusalem Talmud and the Midrash identify it with alvos, i.e., Aquilaria agallocha, which is a tropical tree of high quality used in the making of furniture. It has also been identified with the biblical aloe (Num. 24:6; Ps. 45:9; Prov. 7:17; Song 4:14) used in incense and for perfume. In modern Hebrew almog is used for coral, which is also the meaning given to it in the Talmud (rh 23a).


J. Feliks, Olam ha-Ẓome'aḥ ha-Mikra'i (19682), 124–5.

[Jehuda Feliks]