Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
According to the Bible, in Exodus 3:2, Moses heard the voice of God coming from a Burning bush that was not consumed by fire. This occurred after he had to flee Egypt, and was when he was called to go and demand the release of the Israelites.
In Byzantine times, Saint Catherine's monastery was built on the supposed site of the biblical event. What was claimed to be the original burning bush is now dead, but a claimed descendant is on view today.
Burning bush is also a common name applied to several different, unrelated plants:
- The herb Dictamnus albus, also known as false dittany, white dittany, or gas plant, belonging to the family Rutaceae. It gets its name from comparison to the Bible account; the leaves (and indeed the whole plant) produce aromatic oils that can catch fire readily on hot days, though without injury to the plant.
- Shrubs in the genus Euonymus, mostly known as spindles, in the family Celastraceae, are also called burning bush in North America, because of their bright red foliage in fall.
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