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(311 words)

Author(s): Na’aman, Nadav
[German Version] The Hebrew word רָמָה/ rāmāh means “height” and was a commonplace name for elevated places. Several biblical places are called various derivatives of the noun (Ramatayim, Ramoth, Ramoth-Gilead, Ramoth-Negev, Ramath-Lehi, Ramath-Mizpeh). It is not always easy to distinguish between them and establish their locations. 1. The best known place is the Ramah of Benjamin which is often mentioned (Josh 18:25; Judg 19:13; 1 Kgs 15:17, 21f.; Isa 10:29; Jer 40:1). The town is identified with modern er-Rām, situated 9 km north of Jerus…


(2,776 words)

Author(s): Na’aman, Nadav | Achenbach, Reinhard
[German Version] I. City Samaria (Heb. ןוֹרמְשֹׁ/Šomerôn) was the capital of the kingdom of Israel (II, 1) and later the center of the province established in the hill country of Samaria (see II below) from the late 8th century bce until the late Byzantine period. 1 Kings relates that Omri purchased the “hill of Samaria” from a man named Shemer and built a city, which he called after the original owner (16:24). This, of course, is a folk etymology, the name Shomron is derived from the root שׁמר/ šmr (“to watch, guard”), הַר/ har Šomerôn (“watch-mountain”). Its name fits the place well, loc…


(333 words)

Author(s): Na'aman, Nadav
[German Version] (“enclosure”) was a large fortified town in northern Galilee, situated at the intersection of the roads leading northwards from the Jordan valley to the Beqa valley and the Lebanese coast. The most important city in Canaan in the 2nd millennium bce, Hazor is mentioned in the clay tablets from the 18th century bce that were excavated in Mari dealing with the diplomatic and trade relations to the Mesopotamian and North Syrian kingdoms. Hazor asserted its position in northern Canaan even after the Egyptian conquest of the land in 1457 bce. The settlement of ancient Hazor…


(535 words)

Author(s): Na'aman, Nadav
[German Version] was an important Canaanite and Israelite city in the Shephelah. Tel Lachish (Tell ed-Duweir) is located near the Lachish valley, a main route leading from the coastal plain to the Hebron hills. In 1929 W. Albright proposed its identification with Lachish and his suggestion is generally accepted today. The derivation of the name is unknown. Lachish was the most important Late Bronze Canaanite city in the southern Shephelah, and three of its kings are mentioned in the Amarna letters…


(327 words)

Author(s): Na'aman, Nadav
[German Version] An oasis in northern Sinai, on the southern border of Canaan (Num 34:4; Ezek 47:19; 48:48) and a station on the way from Egypt to Beer-Sheba and from the coast of Philistia to the Gulf of Eilat. Its name is derived from the West Semitic root qdš (“holy”); the meaning of the second element (“Barnea”) is unknown. It is also known by the names En-mishpat (Gen 14:7) and “waters of Meribah”/ “Meribath kadesh”. According to the biblical tradition, Kadesh played an important role in the early history of Israel. After the departure f…