BEARD. With Asiatics a badge of manly dignity, in contrast to the Egyptians, who usually shaved the head and the face. As a sign of mourning, it was the custom to pluck it out or cut it off. The Israelites were forbidden to shave off the corners of their beards, probably because that act was regarded as a sign of paganism (Lev.19.27). To force a man to cut off his beard was to inflict on him a shameful disgrace (2Sam.10.4-2Sam.10.5).