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(288 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Syria | Hasmonaeans | Hellenistic states | Phoenicians, Poeni | Pilgrimage | Pompeius | Aegean Koine | Egypt Arabic casqalan, to the west of modern derech ha-nizachon, situated 16 km north of Gaza on the Mediterranean and on the via maris, was an important port and trade city connecting Egypt with Canaan/Syria and via Byblus with Mesopotamia. In the 2nd millennium A. was under Egyptian influence. In the 1st millennium A. belonged continuously to the Pentapolis of the Philistines (1 S…


(813 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
(Hebrew bēt-ēl ‘House of El’). [German version] [1] Place in the Ephraim range of mountains This item can be found on the following maps: Hasmonaeans Place in the Ephraim range of mountains, original name Lūz (Gen. 28,19; 35,6; 48,3; Jos. 18,3; Judg. 1,23) and identified with today's bētīn; 17 km north of Jerusalem (cf. Eus. On. 40,20f.) at the intersection of the roads from Hebron to Sichem and from Jericho to the Mediterranean; linked with an important sanctuary that, to distinguish it from the city with the earlier …


(240 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] (Βηρσαβεέ; Bērsabeé). In the northern Negev, identified either with bir as-saba (now Beer Ševa) or with tall as-sab (5 km east). In the biblical tradition, B. appears as an open-air sanctuary of Yahwe with the name of El-Olam and is associated with the three arch fathers. However, it has some grounding only in the Isaac tradition, if that. Its meaning in popular etymology is ‘well of the oath’ (Gen. 21,22-27, 31b; 26,25-33), or ‘seven wells’ (Gen. 21,28-31a). In the set phrase ‘from Dan to Be…


(331 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Syria | Theatre | Hasmonaeans | Phoenicians, Poeni | Pompeius (Hebrew dōr). Port town identified with Ḫirbat al-Burǧ near the village aṭ-Ṭanṭūra 15 km north of Caesarea (Eus. Onom. 9,78; 16,136) and 21 km south of Haifa. Settlement since the Middle Bronze Age IIA was demonstrated in excavations from 1980-1991. D. was attested in the city lists of Ramses II (region of the via maris between Saron and Akko). In the travel report of Wen Amun (about 1100 BC), however, D. appeared in the possession of the Tkl, who were one of the S…


(237 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] (Qarnaim). The place referred to in Am 6:13 as qarnayim, in the LXX and in Jos as καρναιν, καρνιον or καρναια, in Jerome as carnae/eas, is identified with Šaiḫ Saʿd, 4 km in northeastern direction from Aštarot (Gn 14:5 draws both places together as Aštarot-K.) east of the Jordan [1]. The Israelite king Jerobeom II is said to have conquered K. in his wars just before 760 BC, if Am 6:13 is not in fact a play of words ( Lobedar = ‘nothing’, Qarnaim = ‘horns’ as a symbol of strength) [2]. After the fall of Damascus in 732 BC, K. became the capital of the Assyrian pr…


(173 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] The location identified with ḫirbet at-tell, 3 km south-east of Bētin (Gn 12,8; Jos 7,2), appears primarily in the Bible with the name hay, (determinate appellative) meaning ‘desolate place’ (Jos 8,28; Arabic at-tell). Archaeological findings corroborate this. The early Bronze Age city was fortified by three colossal ring walls and was c. 10 hectares in size. It also had an acropolis with a large spacious temple. It was completely destroyed in the middle of the 3rd millennium and abandoned by its inhabitants. Not until 1200 BC wa…


(533 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] (the name should perhaps be regarded as etymologically related to Arabic hadda ‘break, hit’, haddat, ‘thunder’). Evidence: Jos. Ant. Iud. 9,93 (Ἄδαδος); Phil. Bybl. FGH 3, 569, 24 (Ἄδωδος); Plin. HN 37,186 ( Adadu); Macr. Sat. 1,23,17 ( Adad). Western Semitic name of the  weather god venerated in cult worship as Adad in Akkadian, as Tarhu(a)n(t) in cuneiform Luwian and Hittite, from the middle of the 3rd millennium in numerous local formulations (especially as Ḫadda of Ḫalab/Aleppo [1]). Iconographically he appears a…


(233 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] In Hebrew aḥāb = ‘brother of the father’ (substitute name), Ἄρχ(ι)αβος ( Árch(i)abos) according to Josephus (Ant. 8,13, 1-2), Achab in the Vulgate. As one of the most active rulers, A. governed the northern kingdom of Israel from the capital city of Samaria, which was founded by his father and predecessor Omri, from c. 871-852 BC. In addition to the Bible, the monolith inscription of Salmanassar III (col. II 90-102) and the Mes̆a Stele, l. 5, 8 (no name given here) provide documentary evidence of A. Biblical reports in 1 Kg 16,28-…

Asphaltitis limne

(256 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] ‘Asphalt Lake’ is the name of the 1000 km2 rift valley lake, which does not drain away and in its northern part is approximately 400 m below sea level, into which the Jordan flows, mentioned in Diodorus (2.48.6ff.; 19. 98f.), Josephus (BI 4.436-482) and Plinius (HN 5.72). Tectonic movements had caused the pure bitumen (oxydized petroleum) lying in great quantities at the bottom of the Asphaltitis limne to rise to the surface, where it was gathered in lumps (Str. 16.42f.; Jos. BI 4.8.4; Nabataeans' asphalt trade[1]). The older biblical names ‘Se…


(107 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] Name of a stream east of the Jordan; not located (forms: Hebr. kerît; LXX Χορράθ ( Chorráth); Vulg. Carith; Eus. On. 174,16 Χορρά ( Chorrá); Jer. On. 175,16 Ch.; Peregrinatio Aetheriae, CSEL 39, 58f. Corra). Abel [vol. 1, 1. 484f.], Glueck [2] i.a. [3], arguing on the basis of the prophet Elias' having hidden there (1 Kg 17,3,5), identify C. with the Wadi el-Jubis in northern Gilead, which joins the Jordan to the south of Pella. Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) Bibliography 1 F.-M. Abel, Géographie de la Palestine 2 vols., 1933-38 2 N. Glueck, AASO 25-28, 1951, 219 3 J. Döller…


(1,099 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
[German version] (Ugaritic il, Hebrew ēl, Akkadian ilu). Common Semitic appellation for ‘god’ (except in Ethiopian) and also the nomen proprium of a deity attested in Mesopotamia since the 3rd millennium BC that apparently belonged to the original Semitic pantheon. Of several etymological hypotheses, the derivation from the root wl, ‘be in front, the first, strong,’ deserves consideration. While il in Old Akkadian and Amoritic, but also in the texts of  Ebla (3rd millennium) only appears in theophoric personal names, Ugaritic texts (2nd half of the 2…


(440 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin)
(Hebr. Dān, Greek Δάν; Dán, in Ios. Δάνα, Δάνος; Dána, Dános). [German version] [1] Son of Jacob Son of Jacob and eponym of an Israelite tribe (Gen. 30,1-6), which eventually settled near the city of Laish/Leshem, which was then renamed after the tribe (Judg. 18,2-9; Jos. 19,40-48). Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) [German version] [2] City at the foot of Mt Hermon City at the foot of Mt Hermon, 20 km north of Lake Hule, identified with Tall al-Qāḍı̄ at the central source of the Jordan on the basis of a Greek-Aramaic bilingual inscription (3rd/2nd cents. BC) a…


(429 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) | Pahlitzsch, Johannes (Berlin)
This item can be found on the following maps: Pilgrimage [German version] A. Early history (Arab bait-laḥm; Βητλέεμ ( Bētléem; NT); Βαιτλεεμ ( Baitleem; LXX); Βητλέμα, Βηθλεέμη (Bētléma, Bēthleémē; Ios.); Hebrew bēt-leẹm ‘House of Bread’); located about 8 km south of Jerusalem on the important communication route between Jerusalem and Hebron on fertile land at the edge of the desert. The interpretation of the place name as a derivation from a goddess named Lachama is improbable [1]. Archaeologically attested from the Iron Ag…


(610 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) | Knauf, Ernst Axel (Berne)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Dead Sea (textual finds) Canaanite ḥæbrōn (‘place of alliance’ or ‘junction’, the same semantics are at work in the more recent (!) name Qiryat ʿArbaʿ, ‘four-town’, sc. the four clans or tribes named in 1 Sam 25:3; 27:10; 30:26-31); Greek Χεβρων (LXX), Ἑβρών, Γιβρών, Ναβρόν, Χεβρών etc. (Jos passim); ha-barûk (‘the blessed’ = Abraham, Gen 14,19) in  Qumran (DJD III 298, DJD II 160); Arab. al-Ḫalīl ar-Raḥmān (‘the friend [= Abraham, see e.g. Is 41,8] of the merciful [= Allah]’). Central city in the Judaean mou…


(336 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) | Heinz, Marlies (Freiburg)
[German version] [1] Syrio-Phoenician commercial town This item can be found on the following maps: Zenobia | Diadochi and Epigoni | Hellenistic states | Colonization | Phoenicians, Poeni | Pompeius The Syrio-Phoenician commercial town (Curt. 4,1,5) [1] situated on an island opposite Tartus (Akkadian Arwada, Armad(d)a, Hebrew arwad, today Er-ruwad) is mentioned for the first time in the 2nd millennium in the  Amarna letters [2] and named in Assyrian texts since Tiglat-Pileser I [3]. Mentioned in the 1st millennium by Scyl. (104) and is descr…


(2,681 words)

Author(s): Köckert, Matthias (Berlin) | Quack, Joachim (Berlin) | Bremmer, Jan N. (Groningen) | Wick, Peter (Basle) | Toral-Niehoff, Isabel (Freiburg)
[German version] I. Introduction The term P. has found its way as a loanword from the Greek translation of the Bible into numerous languages. The Septuagint regularly uses prophḗtēs to translate the Hebrew substantive nābī, which is etymologically connected with Akkadian nabû(m) = 'one who is called'. Since then a very much wider use has emerged. For a more precise demarcation of the concept, it is useful to adopt Cicero's distinction between inductive and intuitive divination ( genus artificiosum, genus naturale: Cic. Div. 1,11,34; 2,26 f.) and to describe as prophets onl…