A decorative circlet worn on the wrist or lower arm, sometimes forming a complete circle, though in other instances having an opening or clasp. In ancient times bracelets were worn by both men and women, sometimes on just one arm, but occasionally on both. Bracelets of antiquity were made of bronze, glass, iron, silver, and gold and were often highly ornamented, sometimes being studded with jewels.
The Hebrews wore bracelets, and they were in general use from early times in Palestine, where archaeologists have found a number of them, made of various materials, particularly bronze. Abraham’s servant gave Rebekah a gold nose ring and also two bracelets (Heb., tsemi·dhimʹ) having a weight of ten shekels (114 g; 3.7 oz t) of gold. (Ge 24:22, 30, 47) Among the items taken as war booty from the Midianites were bracelets, which were among the valuable articles the Israelites presented to God.—Nu 31:50.
Through Ezekiel, God represented himself as decking Jerusalem with bracelets and other ornaments. But since she had used such beautiful articles idolatrously and had prostituted herself, Jehovah foretold that he would punish her and would have these things taken from her. (Eze 16:11, 17, 38, 39) Bracelets (Heb., sheh·rohthʹ) were among the things Jehovah said he would take away from the haughty “daughters of Zion.”—Isa 3:16, 19.
The armlet or bracelet for the upper arm (Heb., ʼets·ʽa·dhahʹ) was worn by monarchs as one of their insignia of regal authority or sovereign power. The bracelet King Saul of Israel wore upon his arm may have had such significance.—2Sa 1:10; see ORNAMENTS.