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Rabbath-Ammon

(318 words)

Author(s): Nissen, Hans Jörg (Berlin) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
This item can be found on the following maps: Syria | Theatre | Dead Sea (textual finds) | Hasmonaeans | Pompeius ( Rabbath bnē Ammōn, LXX Ῥαββά/ Rhabbá; Pol. Ῥαβατάμανα/ Rhabatámana, Assyrian bīt ammāna; Philadelphia since the mid 3rd cent. BC; modern Ammān). [German version] I. Through the Persian Period Capital city of the Ammonites (Ammon [2]); the oldest traces of settlement come from the Neolithic Age (7th-6th millennium BC). The earliest important remains with rich tombs on the citadel date from the Middle Bronze Age (1st half of the 2…

Lakhmids

(166 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (Arabic Banū Laḫm). Kings of the Arabian tribal confederacy of the Tanūḫ (2nd quarter of 3rd cent. - early 7th cent. AD). The seat of the L. was al-Ḥīra, a caravan centre in south-western Iraq, south of Kerbela. As vassals of the Persian Sassanids, the L. controlled the tribes of the Arabian peninsula, and joined the Sassanids' war against Rome, later against Byzantium and her Syrian allies ( Palmyra, Ghassanids). Some L. were Nestorian Christians ( Nestorianism); through their in…

Dekapolis

(414 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (ἡ Δεκάπολις; hē Dekápolis). Term for a territory comprising a varying number of cities and with a predominantly Greek population, concentrated in northern Trans-Jordan, southern Syria and northern Palestine. Although some towns later to belong to the Dekapolis had already been in existence in pre-Hellenistic times, most of them claimed to have been founded by  Alexander [4] the Great. Archaeological investigations, however, have shown that the development of many towns into urban centres began only under Seleucid an…

Dura-Europus

(288 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids | Syria | Christianity | Zenobia | Commerce | Hellenistic states | Limes City on the west bank of the middle Euphrates (Arab. aṣ-Ṣāliḥiya, south-eastern Syria). D.-E. was founded c. 300 BC by Macedonian colonists as one of the Seleucid fortresses for securing links to the Euphrates. After the Parthian conquest c. 141 BC it rose to become a military station and important staging post on the caravan route to Palmyra. Trajan's advances against Mesopotamia restored the status of D.-E. as a Roman garrison city on the Syrian li…

Kangavar

(101 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (Arab. Kangāwar, Qaṣr al-Luṣūṣ, Pers. Kinkiwar). City on the West Iranian high plateau between Hamadān and Kermānšāh. Preceding settlements evolved on the trading route between Mesopotamia and East Iran from the 5th millennium BC (Godīntappe, Seh Gāvī). A sanctuary dedicated to the goddess Anāhita existed in K. (Konkobar in Isidore of Charax) from Parthian times (2nd cent. BC). Leisten, Thomas (Princeton) Bibliography G. LeStrange, The Lands of the Eastern Caliphate, 1889, 188f. S. Kāmbakhsh Fard, Les fouilles de Kangavar, in: Bāstān-shenāsī va hunar-i …

Eduma

(49 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (Ἐδουμά; Edoumá, modern Dūmā). According to the Onomasticon of Eusebius (255,74) a settlement in the region of Acrabattene in Transjordan southeast of Neapolis (Nablūs). Leisten, Thomas (Princeton) Bibliography S. Herrmann, Die Operationen Pharao Schoschenks I. im östlichen Ephraim, in: Zschr. des deutschen Palästina-Vereins 80, 1964, 61, 67ff.

Abila

(244 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Pompeius Town (mod. Quwailibeh) 15 km north-west of Irbid (Jordan). The ruins of A. cover an area of c. 1.5 km × 0.5 km, which comprises two hills, Tell A. and Khirbat Umm al-Amad [1. 1 f.] to the south. The settlement, which had been continuously settled from the 3rd millennium BC to the Iron Age, was refounded under the Seleucids. Polybius (5,69-70) noted its conquest by Antiochus III in 218 BC. Its inclusion in the  Decapolis occurred no later than at that time. Remains of a street grid with cardo and decumanus, a theatre and aq…

Gadara

(263 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Syria | Theatre | Hasmonaeans | Pilgrimage | Pompeius (modern Umm Qais). Town in north-eastern Transjordania, east of Lake Gennesareth; traces of settlement date back to the 7th cent. BC. After the fall of the Achaemenid kingdom ( Achaemenids), the district of G. came under the control of the Ptolemies for a short period, but became part of the Seleucid kingdom under  Antiochus [5] III in 198 BC. For some time, the name of the town appears on coins as S…

Antioch

(1,581 words)

Author(s): Wittke, Anne-Maria (Tübingen) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton) | Wagner, Jörg (Tübingen) | Tomaschitz, Kurt (Vienna) | Weiß, Peter (Kiel) | Et al.
(Ἀντιόχεια; Antiócheia). [German version] [1] on the Orontes Founded as Antigonea on the Orontes 307 BC, but after the defeat of Antigonus I by Seleucus I Nicator at  Ipsus (301 BC), the town was moved to the site of present-day Antakya (Turkey) in 300 BC, and renamed as A. in honour of the latter's father Antiochus. Capital city of the Seleucid kingdom; it developed under the Seleucids through incorporating numerous settlements into a tetrapolis, each with their own boundary walls. Thanks to its positi…

Africa

(3,957 words)

Author(s): Huß, Werner (Bamberg) | Scheid, John (Paris) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] 1. A. Etymological and conceptual history The term A. as a name for the continent has got a long and ramified history. The term A. (see 3 below) could only be used by the Romans as a description of the continent of A., when the ‘area’ described by the Latin term A. had come to coincide at least in parts with that described by the Greek term Λιβύη ( Libýē) -- but, at the earliest, this happened in the 2nd half of the 3rd cent. BC, i.e. because of the related concepts of ‘Northern A.’ or ‘Punic A.’. Indirectly, via the ‘partial term’, the ‘full ter…

Caesarea

(992 words)

Author(s): Strobel, Karl (Klagenfurt) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton) | Huß, Werner (Bamberg)
[German version] [1] Main town of Cappadocia, modern Kayseri This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids | Syria | Byzantium | Christianity | Zenobia | | Alexander | Hellenistic states | Hellenistic states | Asia Minor | Limes | Limes | Pompeius | Rome | Rome (Καισάρεια; Kaisáreia, Iranian or cuneiform Mazaka). Main town of  Cappadocia (Str. 12,2,7-9), modern Kayseri. [German version] I. Early History to Roman Times C. succeeded the nearby ancient centre of Kaniš (Kültepe;  Asia Minor), although that was still of importance in Hellenistic and Roman time…

Damghan

(176 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (Dāmġān). Town in Iran on the southern foothills of the Alborz, 342 km east of Teheran on the road to Nīšāpūr. The name possibly arose from the contraction of Deh-e Moġān (village of the Magi). The prehistoric antecedent of D. is Tepe Ḥeṣār with layers between the 5th millennium and the early 2nd millennium BC. After a hiatus of 1,500 years D. became the main settlement of the Parthian and Sassanid province of Qūmes, site of one of the holy state fires (ātaxš-ī xwarišnīh, ‘unfed f…

Chorāsān

(257 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] Middle Persian xwarsārān, ‘[Land of the] Sunrise, the East’. Nowadays denotes the north-eastern part of Iran, with Mašhad as its administrative centre. In the pre-Islamic and early Islamic period C. included parts of Central Asia and western Afghanistan. It was under the Sassanids that C. first formed one of the four great provincial satrapies; it was ruled by a Spāhpat with his seat in Merv, having jurisdiction over the following districts (Yaqūbī, Tarīḫ I, 201): Nīšāpūr, Harāt…

Edessa

(672 words)

Author(s): Errington, Robert Malcolm (Marburg/Lahn) | Wirbelauer, Eckhard (Freiburg) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids | Syria | Christianity | Zenobia | | Coloniae | Commerce | Asia Minor | Limes | Pilgrimage | Pompeius | Rome (Ἔδεσσα; Édessa). [German version] [1] City in central Macedonia This item can be found on the following maps: | Macedonia, Macedones City in central Macedonia at the eastern entrance to the Kara-Burun pass from Lower to Upper Macedonia, today known as Edessa, formerly as Vodena. In previous times, E. was wrongly regarded as the old Macedonian royal seat of  Aegae [1]. E. was first men…

Samarra

(509 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] ( Sāmarrā; Theophanes Continuatus 3,36: Σάμαρα/ Sámara). Area of ruins of c. 60 km2 and modern town on the left bank of the Tigris, 100 km north of Baghdad (cf. map). At this site, known since the neo-Assyrian Period (Mesopotamia III D), the emperor Julian [11] the Apostate fell in AD 363 in battle against the Sassanids. It was in this area, mainly inhabited by Nestorians (Nestorius), that the Nahrawān canal, dug in the time of Chosroes [5] Anushirvan (period of rule 531-579) began, which be…

Gerasa

(366 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Syria | Theatre | Hasmonaeans | Pilgrimage | Pompeius (modern Ǧaraš). City located 34 km north of Ammān. Thanks to a stream with the ancient name of Chrysorrhoas, G. was a place of settlement from the time of the early Stone Age. It is therefore reasonable to assume that a settlement already existed when the Macedonians, mentioned in a Roman inscription, introduced the Greek element ─ contrary to legends that  Alexander [4] the Great,  Perdiccas, or  A…

Beroea

(1,229 words)

Author(s): Errington, Robert Malcolm (Marburg/Lahn) | Wirbelauer, Eckhard (Freiburg) | von Bredow, Iris (Bietigheim-Bissingen) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
(Βέροια; Béroia). [German version] [1] In Macedonia This item can be found on the following maps: Christianity | Macedonia, Macedones | Macedonia, Macedones | Education / Culture In Macedonia. Errington, Robert Malcolm (Marburg/Lahn) [German version] A. Hellenistic and Roman periods City in Macedonian  Bottice, east of the Bermium; now Verria. First mentioned in the 5th cent. BC (Thuc. 1,61,4), B. had its development, like many Macedonian cities, principally in the Hellenistic period; the Antigonids seem to have particularly favoured…

Ancyra

(470 words)

Author(s): Strobel, Karl (Klagenfurt) | Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids | Theatre | Byzantium | Zenobia | | Commerce | Hellenistic states | Hellenistic states | Asia Minor | Limes | Pergamum | Pilgrimage | Pompeius | Patricius | Rome | Rome (Ἄνκυρα; Ánkyra). City and fortress in  Galatia, modern Ankara. Anchors feature in legends, explaining the origin of the name (Paus. 1,4,5; Steph. Byz. s. v. A.; anchor as the city's symbol). Its origins lay in the prehistoric/ Hittite period; a Phrygian centre from the 8th to the 6th cents. BC (foundation myth: Paus…

Kerbela

(194 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] (Arabic Karbalāʾ). Shiite pilgrimage centre in Iraq, situated c. 95 km south-west of Baghdad; until right through to the 20th cent. the final station of caravan routes from Iran and the starting-point for Persian Mecca pilgrims. The name K. describes the palm gardens that surround the funerary sanctuary and the town of Mašhad al-Ḥusain. A town Kerbelā is already mentioned in the OT (Dan 3:21), but Shiite lexicographers explain K. as a combination of Arabic karb (mourning) and balāʾ (disaster). K. became significant for the Shiite Islamic world through the m…

Bostra

(336 words)

Author(s): Leisten, Thomas (Princeton)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids | Syria | Theatre | Christianity | Zenobia | | Coloniae | Legio | Limes Small town on the southern edge of the Syrian basalt desert (Ḥaurān). The modern name Buṣrā corresponds with the Nabataean and Palmyrenian version BṢR (‘fortress’). B. was a settlement from the early Bronze Age and, in the 2nd. millennium BC, had close relations with Egypt because of its role as a caravanserai and a staging-post on the road to northern Syria and to the Red Sea (…
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