Phylacteries: (Gr. phulakteria; i.e., "defences" or "protections"), called by modern
Jews tephillin (i.e., "prayers") are mentioned only in
(Matthew 23:5) They
consisted of strips of parchment on which were inscribed these four
and which were enclosed in a square leather case, on one side of which
was inscribed the Hebrew letter shin, to which the rabbis attached some
significance. This case was fastened by certain straps to the forehead
just between the eyes. The "making broad the phylacteries" refers to
the enlarging of the case so as to make it conspicuous.
Another form of the phylactery consisted of two rolls of parchment, on
which the same texts were written, enclosed in a case of black
calfskin. This was worn on the left arm near the elbow, to which it was
bound by a thong. It was called the "Tephillah on the arm."