The husks (see Luke 15:16), were the fruit of the carob tree, which is common in Palestine and is used by the poor as food and for the fattening of swine or cattle. When ripe, it is like a cooked beanpod, brown, glossy, and filled with seeds. Children eat it readily and seem to thrive on it. The carob is of the same family as the American locust tree. Its fruit is sometimes called "St. John's bread," as John the Baptist is thought to have lived upon it in the wilderness.