The Tantur, Rachel Tomb and Jacir Palace

Kathisma Well has been closed in the ’70s because of the Establishment of Gilo and other Settlements in the Area, the Well of Kathisma has been there for a while, and according to another reference it is also mentioned that it was on the way between Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Front of Har Homa there is Valley that is very fertile, everything was grown there even in antiquity – Wadi Al Shami, People would go there and plant Apricots and Apples and other fruits and vegetables, and even different kinds of apricots, and was one of the Best Apricots in the Area, even Figs that have been collected on Two Seasons, Later on, after 1948, it became part of Israeli Controlled Areas.

The Tantur

The Tantur Ecumenical Institue, the First Talk after 1054 that happened the Excommunication till 1964, it was the first place where have been first Christian dialogue between the East and West Churches, it became as the visit of Pope Paul Paul VI, and they met in the Mount of Olives and we met him he told him it has been 500 years since we first talked, and there hasn’t been any communication Between Catholics and Orthodox.

Tantur meaning let us start with abshalom tomb, Tantur mean it is the high ground on the High hill you can see all the area from there, so it was a pretty strategic location, and since then every new people meet there.

Tantur is part of the Notre-Dame Unversity and they bought it from Malta as we know, Today if we visit the Tantur they have lots of Activities and Educational Programs and lectures to learn the history of the land and theology and field trips for weeks and even communication between different Christian denominations and other religions also such as Muslims and jews, there goal and Mission encourage social rights and exploring human rights and also Guest House and also Hostel of Maltese.

Before the Tantur it was belonging to Austro-Hungarian and Emperor at that time Francis Joseph and while also you see Marble column have a name on it of Emperor Francis and he also opened Street number 6, and the one who have been supervised the purchasing of the land is Count Bernard Caboga.

Also Tower of Jacob also the Tantur was named, and also Ephrata they believed this was the Area also.

The First time the place was opened as Hospice in the Order of Malta , and later on, they opened a Clinic, it was very common for the knight of Malta they are military government and their mission is medical military so it was very common for them to open such thing, and this tradition remained the same from the 12th Century and they have more than tens of thousands of medical staff all over the world.

at one Time the Salesians they used this place and later on it has been used as Internment Camp and later there have been lots of conflict in that Area and later on in 1957 the Order of Malta needed the place for its own work and later on in 1964 The Pople Paul IV visited the holy land and was interested in dialogue and it have been delayed the opening because the conflict that was going on there at that time.

The Old way from Bethlehem the British first people to open the roads we see today in the 1920’s , when people want to go to Jerusalem to Bethlehem they went through route there pass by the Tantur, and Also local Arabs called it Tantur Firaoun, it looks like Pharaoh’s Hat and it looks like that and that is why they called it Pharaoh’s Hat.

in Summary, the Ecunmical council and also the place is great to view and strategic location and also Pope Paul 6th who visited this place and made first communication and also it started melting the tension in 1964, and they greeted each other there, and because of that the Tantur was open for Ecumenical Dialogue, and they are well known and part of Notre Dam Unversity and before that it was Emperor Joseph who bought the land and also was named at one time Tower of Jacob and it started as hospice then as medical Clinic.

Rachel Tomb

When you think about Rachel you think about motherhood many people especially jews they think about Rachel and pray for Rachel for easy pregnancy, from the 4th Century we know about Rachel Tomb from Eusebius and Bordeaux pilgrim and mention the tomb as being located 4 miles from Jerusalem, Later on there have been Tomb approximately 6 KM from Jerusalem and in the 7th Century, it has become Stone Pyramid.

Anonymous Pilgrim of Bordeaux he made pilgrimage and wrote many things and it is the first guiding Book to visit the holy land, both of them told us there is a tomb 6 KM and which match with current tomb here, Muqaddasi came from Jerusalem Best Knowledge in knowing the region but he didn’t mention anything about Rachel tomb during the Tenth Century maybe not important to him or the site was neglected so before the crusades it was neglected most likely, later at the times of the Crusades we start to hear about it, the Madissi we know from him that Omar Al Khattab prayed inside the Nativity southern place and not only for Christians but also for Muslims.

During the Crusader period it was a Dome with Wall and was confirmed by Muhammad Al Idrisi and also Benjamin of Tudela, according to the description of the travelers of the first Jewish to describe the Tomb till late 18th century there have been a tomb and stones and he placed a stone at her gravesite and Jacob covered them with one large stone.

Muhammad Al Idrisi says the mother of Joseph and benjamin that the site is covered by Twelve Stones and above it is a dome vaulted.

Sarcophagus Shape was changed in the 14th Century and it was known that women used to gather stones from Rachel Tomb as a charm for an easy Delivery.

Fr. Amico around 1596 has left us a drawing where we see the empty tomb in the middle of a chapel in the four side walls there were archways.

It was later Reinnovated by the Ottomans and also Muhammad Pasha gave Jews the right to its exclusive use, the Current Shape of that place at the time of Muhammad Pasha and he changed the Structure and made it what used to be and later on it was closed because the shepherds and sheep to get inside this holy place.

in 1841 Rachel Tomb has been renovated and made two places for Sephardi and other for Askenazi, Sephardi is the eastern jew and Ashkenazi Western Jew, and because of that, the Ottomans gave firman recognizing Jewish rights at Rachel Tomb.

Also, it is belief that the closer you’re the holy place the more rewards you will get to heaven which is the Ta’amreh Tribe began burying their dead’s near Rachel Tomb in the 18th Century.

October and November the traditional Anniversary of Rachel Death.

in 2010 the Israeli Government Decided to include Rachel’s Tomb and the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron on Israel’s Offical List of National Heritage Sites.

UNESCO switched the name Bilal Ben Rabah – Bilal Ben Rabah the first person to call for prayer at time of prophet Mohammad and prophet told him why don’t you go and start the prayer and he was one of the companions of the prophets and when the prophet felt so so sad, it would be the first time he would call for prayer after the death of Muhammad till the time the Muslims conquest of Jerusalem, on his way out of Bethlehem to Jerusalem the prayer time has been called, and most likely he asked caliphate, Omar, can I pray here? so it has been a Maqam – Maqam is passing by of someone or important event, and the area has been called Mosque of Bilal Ben Rabah, also there is Bilal Maqam in Jordan and also Bilal Tomb in Damascus.

Jacir Palace

After Tanzimat Bethlehem became more to European Style and Bethlehem started to have lots of New Buildings and New Councils all at that time, and Bethlehem started to expand after the Gatehouse of Bethlehem, and also they started to do the imports and exports, and the Bethlehemites got very high statues and rankings comparing to the local communities at that time, Hermas Palace, Jacir Palace, and Handal Palace are just examples of the Castles in Bethlehem.

We started to have new Buildings like Lutheran Church in Bethlehem, and we had new monasteries like Al Carmelites and Al Delasal, and at that time the Education was very good and also lots of western influence to the Bethlemites, Now about Jacir Palace, Yousif Jacir was a Chieftain at that time and supported by the Ottoman Government and he was very reputed person and was well known for mother of pearl carvings and for collecting taxes for the Ottoman Empire and register all newborns in Bethlehem and he had five sons all of them were in merchants but most important of his sons Soliman Yousif Jacir.

Soliman opened a Business in France and even the Ottmon Council was always happening with Soliman Jacir and even Sultan Abdul Hamid II gave him special golden embroidery, and also Pope Pius 10th gave him a medal, Jacir people were very hospitable and the Jacir Palace and family were very generous people even Jabra Ibrahim Jabra mentioned in one of his book the generosity of Jacir and they were very wealthy landowners in Bethlehem, and he was Mayor of Bethlehem for 8 years, the Construction of Jacir palace was built on about 5000 M2, every floor about 800 M2

the Construction was built in France and some say Morcos Nassar the architect, and the one who built it Issa Hazbon and JEries Anastas and at about 1910 in Bethlehem alone there were about 500 builders and stonemasons in Bethlehem.

Najeeb Al Hawawini the first Writer of his time and he wrote at the entrance and also he got a European painter named Marco and he painted the french countryside inside the Jacir Palace, also you can see the first two letters in metal SJ which means Soliman Jacir.

the Palace shows the Eastern and Western mix and also the Jacir Palace talks a lot about the People of that time and you will see a Star with Helal which means he was a mayor or governor at that time (Soliman Jacir )

The Design is amazing the courtyard and many people who get married these days they go to jacir Palace to have their wedding photos there, and also it have some biblical scenes the paintings there, but the story of the Jacir palace was sad ending, the palace has been used as palace was an Army HQ and a prison at time of British mandate.

Roman Architecture in Israel & Ancient World

  • Romans took a lot from the Greeks they were inspired by their architecture as well as the City planning

What are the roman Fingerprints?
* The roman Road System
* Mile Stone
* Queducts
* Baths
* Temples
* Theaters
* Hippodromes – Horse Racing Staduim
* Amphitheaters – مدرجات

  • In All the Romans Built more than 80,000 KM
  • The Road would have great effects on the Economic and social conditions of the Middle east specially in Palestine and Israel
  • that is why we have the famous saying all roads lead to Rome – Because they have built very complicated system of roads that would improve the transporation through the Roman Empire either if it was for Military reasons or Economical reasons like merchants travelling from one city to the other across the Ancient world even to europe,africa and Asia
  • Romans weren’t the first people to introduce Roads
  • Romans weren’t the First people to Invent Roads we have archaelogical evidences that goes back to the Chalcolithc Period as well as the Bronze Age
  • Most of the Roman Engineers and Workers when they build a road they build it on ancient routes from people before them like the greeks and others who used those routes, and most likely they removed traces of those routes before them
  • The Construction of the Roman Road as the follwing layers
    * Rubble
    * Slabs of Stone
    * Pebbles and Gravel – رمل و حصى
    * smooth paving stones
  • The roman roads were noteable to be always straightness and solid foundation and cambered surfaces and drainage system on the sides and sometimes the concrete made from pozzolana ( volcanic ash) and lime
  • Roman Road sections are still traceable in Israel and palestine till today
  • we can see some of the roman roads in Sebaste ( Sebastya )
  • Sebaste was founded by Herod in honor to the Emperor Augusts
  • Other City caesarea lay along the Mediterranean Coast it was also very close to the ancient roman road way of the Sea
  • Roman Mile is 1481 M

Roman Mile Stone

  • Cylindrical Pillars , sometimes bearing an inscription and marking distance along these high ways
  • Milestone were originally stone obelisks
  • Milestones were very important because they indicate the way from one point to the other
  • Center of rome we can see the Golden Milestone of course this milestone has been lost it is called Milliarium Aureum
  • the milestone also could tell the Romans they were on a Roman Road and showed them where they were at the moment
  • these milestone could tell villagers or peasnts if there is close govermental structures

Roman Aqueducts and Water System

  • This was supreme accomplishment of Roman Technology
  • it was common for village or city to be located near spring in the early iron age and ages before it but with this system they could transport the water from one location to the other Rome at one time at more than 17 aqueducts transfering water to it
  • in ancient times people used to transfer there water by them selves with pottery vessels like pottery jars
  • also for many Area’s Cisterns have been dug with the development of plaster many area’s became possible to inhabit
  • Roman Govermant played big role in Water Systems
  • Aqueduct from two words ( Aqua = Water) Ducere to Lead which translate to leader water
  • Aqueduct refers to a system of pipes,canals,ditches,tunnels and supporting structures used to convey water from it is source to it is final destination
  • Aqueducts have been used to supply solomon pools for example in Bethlehem and agricultural land with water, it was very important for area’s with very limited access of fresh water

The Iron Age of Israel / Palestine / Land of Canaan 1200-586 BC

What are the Kingdoms by the Late Bronze Age ?

  • in Egypt The New Kingdom was at its height
  • Hittites Carved out a Vast Empire in the Levant
  • Canaanite Coastal Cities were prospering
  • Egypt to Mesopotamia Trade was Flourishing
  • and in Aegean the Mycenaean Culture was Flourshing
  • Also Note that none of these Civilizations or Kingdoms were self efficient by the Late Bronze Age they depended on Trade So much and any missing key link would mean huge disaster to any of those civilizations
  • And any of Ancient World civilizations didn’t have connection with the other they would have after in indirect way, for example the Hittites don’t trade with Egypt but the Canaanites do so all of the Ancient Late Bronze Age World was in connection with each other in a way or another

Who Invaded Greek in around 1200 BC ?
Doric Invasions we call them and there is no certainty many believe they were Tribes from the North or Macedonian but for Sure Greek Were going into Dark Ages

The Year of 1177 What happend? What is the collapse?
It is not just one reason it is many reasons starting from droughts, famine, Sea People, Internal Rebellious and many other reasons who turned this to be the Collapse of the Ancient world more than 3000 Years as we know it, and they were in connection with the Hebrews and Philistines arrival times.

Who are the Sea People or the Philistines?
The Sea People 1276-1177 Are groups Who Invaded Anatolia, Syria, Palestine/Israel, Cyprus and Egypt , their language was non-sematic and they have been moving eastward and southward and had been migrating into groups in 13th an 12th Century and they could come from:
Ekwes – Could be Achaeans Greeks
Teresh – Could be from Troy
Lukka – Could be from Lycians
And Pelest which means Immigrants which refer to Philistines who perhaps came from Crete and were the only major tribe of the sea peoples to settle permanently in Palestine as we can see from Carvings in Egypt they brought there OX Cart with them and there wives and children

What are the Places have been Destructed by the Sea People or the Collapse of that time?
The Minoan Civilization in Crete has been brought to an End as well as the Hittite State in Anatolia and they attacked egypt, northern syria including places such as ugrait where we have found a pot with more than 14 Tablets that are written on them the City of Ugrait is under attack.

What is the Connection Between Egypt and the Sea People?
Well we know that Egypt has been attacked Twice by the Sea people and Won both of them as we know from Egyptian Texts , the Sea people were defeated Against Ramesses III in 1177 a Glorious Victor in which many of the sea people were slain and many taken captive and we can see how the Sea people look like from Egyptian Carvings and inscriptions on the stone , Also last battle with Sea people was with Ramesses III after they nearly vanish from history most likely the survivors have been assimilated into Egyptian or Canaanite Cultures , for Almost One hundred Years the Sea people were Most Feared Sea Raiders in the

The Philistines were one of a poeple of Aegean origin , According to Biblical Tradition the Philistines came from Caphtor most likely Crete, mentioned in AMOS 9:7 Did i not bring Israel up from Egypt , the Philistines from Caphtor and the Arameans from Kir – AMOS 9:7, and we can see on the Pictorial Wall carvings on the temple at Medinet habu in Egypt depicts Rameses III successful battle against the Sea People and this portrayal on this wall is very important not only because it show the battle but also it show philistine armor, weapons , dress as well as the type of ship they used to plying the mediterranean.

So Basiclly there is more than one hypothesis that what happend to the Philistine one have been used as Mercenaries for Egyptian Interest andone settle down in Palestine the PentaPolis Area without resistance most likely with permission from Ramesses III

Sea People come in Two Times one in 1207 BC and one in 1177 BC , so the first one in the fifth year of merneptah and 8th year of Ramses III

What is the PentaPoils?
They are five Cities Constituting a Philistine League (PentaPolis) : Ashdod, Gaza, Ashkelon ,Gath and Ekron – it was from this designations that the whole of the country later called palestine by the Greeks

What is Ekron?
Ekron has been identified with Tel Miqne this identification was made certain by great discovery of Ekron Royal Inscription at the site in 1996, it was found on rectangular-shaped limestone block and has five line and 71 characters, and mentioned Ekron thus confirming the Identification of the Site.

What is Gath?
It is still under debate but it has been identified with Tel el Safi

  • in 2016 a large philistine Cemetry was discovered near ashkelon contained more than 150 Dead Buried in Oval Shaped Graves – Burial of Philistine infant in ashkelon
  • in 2019 analysis of DNA extracted from ashkelon in 2016 confirms the theory that the earliest philistines had at least some european ancestry most likely from the south of the continent , so it most likely by huge chance they hailed from the Aegean.
  • The Philistines came as we said earlier with their wives and children and animals so they were some sort of immigrants and they intermingled with the local population int he early iron age, they became virtually indistinguishable
  • The Archaeology of Iron Age Palesine/Israel Covers most of the Period of the Hebrew Bible from the Israelite Settlement C.1200 BC utnil the Babylonian Conquest of Jerusalem 586 BC

What is Iron?
Iron is a Chemical Element with Symbol FE , from Latin Ferrum , it is by Mass the most common element on earth, forming much of Earth’s Outer and inner core , it is the fourth most common element in the Earth’s Crust.

Iron Melting a technique known after 1200 BC, where it required a high temperature to turn the iron into a metal, the melting point of iron is 1550 Degrees Celsius while copper melts at only 1080 Degrees celsius and Bronze only 950 C.

Pure iron is relatively soft but can’t be obtained throught melting it need to be significantly hardened and strengthend by impurities in particular carbon, accordingly the philistines had developed a process that inluded leaving iron in the fire long enough to absorb the carbon from firewood to form another more malleable form of iron/steel

What is the Origin of Iron Smelting?
Many Belive it is Attributed to the Hittites of Anatolia during the Late Bronze age and their empire had been on that advantage , according to that theory the ancient sea peoples who invaded the Eastern Mediterranean and Destroyed the Hittite Empire at the end of the late bronze age, were responsible for spreading the knowledge through that region, even though this is only hypothesis and there is no archaeological evidence of this alleged Hittite monopoly.

if we go back to the late bronze age the iron objects found in Anatolia is comparable to the iron objects found in Egypt and other places of the same time period and only small number of those objects were weapons.

Another theory believe that the spreading of the Iron Melting and Iron objects goes back to many reasons one of them disrupt of the trade routs after the collapse that happened during the late bronze age so people needed to find solution for other strong metal objects , however no archaeological evidence suggests a shortage of bronze or tin in the early Iron Age, Bronze objects remained abundant and these objects have the same percentage of tin as those from Late bronze Age.

The Philistines and the Iron

  • Most Theory about the Iron it assume that the Philistines Brought this technology with them from Cyprus or from Mycenaean Greece and they played the majro role in spreading this new technology with them
  • Most Contribution to the land of Canaan was the Iron Technology , for example iron knife with bone handle at Ekron as well as iron Made Agricultural Tool at Tell Miqne (Ekron) was found as well
  • Many People belive there is Two Iron Periods one of them Iron Age I and Iron Age II , Iron Age I from 1200 till 1000 BC and Iron Age II from 1000 till 586 BC
  • When the Philistines had Iron they had huge vantage against the Israelite’s that is why we see the Israelite’s struggling against the philistines in the tanakh
  • As we can see in Samuel it is mentioned only Saul and his son Jonathan had sword or spear in their hands
  • Israelite’s Main Focus when settling in the Land of Canaan is the Central Ridge Mountains
  • Their number was increased greatly during the settling of canaan by seminomadic hebrew tribes already in land of Canaan such as the Gibeonites who joined the invaders against their sedentary neighbors ( Gibeonites ) they joined forces with the Hebrews against the war with the amorites for example

Philistine Material

  • Philistine Vessels are some of the easiest to recognize , they used to cover there pottery vessels with white coating called a slip , over it they painted black and red figures and motifs boredered by straight or wavy lines
  • one common motif was a swan whose long neck and head were turned to the rear , another motif was a swirl of concentric circle
  • As So Biochrome deocration was used on a great many single-handled jugs, medium sized bowls, and jugs with a spout that have some taken to be a beer containers
  • It looks like they have taken these designs and idea’s as well as techniques from there original home land which is in the Aegean Area
  • During the 13th Century potters in Greece, Crete and Cyprus were producitng the finely made mycenaen, minoan and cypriot wares, these vessels containedmany of motifs of lines and circles along with the tradition of painted surfaces that the philistine potters later were to adapt to their own tradition.

Neighbors of the Israelite’s and Philistines

  • Edomites in the South
  • Moabites East of the Dead Sea
  • Ammonites On the Edge of the Syrian Desert
  • These were Considered Fellow Hebrews by the Israelites and they began to settle down before the Israelite’s and they remained polytheists until the end of the hebrew bible period
  • The early Israelites Possessed A Strong Cetnralizing force in their monotheistic Faith, combined with a stern of code of ethics in which set them apart from their neighbors

Character of the Israeli Organizations
According to the Pressures against this religious bound the tribes were often in Civil wars specially at the times of the Judges because there was no central authority to manage all the Tribes together and later they demanded the need of Centralized authority – A King , The Pressure we are talking about here of course comes from the Philistines and the Canaanites

This outcome led for Israelites to Seek a King here we have the Salvation of Israel from its enemies lay only in Union, after unsuccessful attempts had been made – one attempt did successed and Saul became the King of all Israel in around 1020 BC , Saul was anointed by pophet Sameul in Mizpeh ( Tell En Nasbeh) sotuhern entrance of Al Bireh , 14 km north west of Jerusalem

What is the Bejnamin Plateau?
It formed the Core of Bejnamin’s Tribal Territory
South Gibeah
East Geba
North Mizpah
West Gibeon

Saul History
Saul Defeated the Ammonites and the Philistines but was killed with his son Jonathan in a battle that took place in mount Gilboa against the Philistines about 1000 BC, and as final act of humiliation to the Israelite’s the Philistines displayed Saul Crops on the Wall of near by city of Beth Shean , this was obvious practice to intimidate the Israelite s and Humiliate the Dead.

King David History
King David Succeeded Saul After his death about 990 BC , and he conquered the Hebrew States east of the Jordan River, of Moab , Ammon and Edom , as well as the intervention of the arameans from syrica forced him to defeat the States of aram as far as north the border of hamath on the orontes river, so now till aram in the north it had been joined with the Kingdom of King david

  • King David First Achievements to Establish a capital that was acceptable to All Tribes – Jerusalem
  • David also organized a Stable administration based largely on Egyptian Models and carried out census of the population
  • King david died before he complete his plans but they were carried out by his successor King Solomon.

King Solomon History

  • The Region of Solomon mid 10th Century represents the culmination of Israelite Political History, even though he lost territories conquered by david he was extraordinarily successful in organizing the economic life of the country
  • Solomon’s reputation for Wisdom and the magnificence of his court tend to give the impression of a golden age in Israel
  • Solomon Mantained the kingdom largely by buildign a defensive network and making diplomati marriages with surrounding nations, his marriange to unnamed daughter of pharaoh signals egypt’s political weakness during 10th century
  • During this time Israel Benefited from a peace that king david left for his son king Solomon he made huge achivments of Trade and Commerce and Israel Land was flourishing but most of Kingdom wealth was spent in elaborate building operations which included the Temple of Jerusalem and the Royal palace as well as numerous fortified Towns , The Best known for these are Megiddo, Hazor and Gezer. King solomon Time was 965-928 BC but the price was forced labor, harash treatment and heavy taxes proved too much for his people that is why we see after the Great King Solomon death the northern Israel revolted and disrupting the United Monarchy.
  • About 931 BC the northern Kingdom of Israel split to be the Kingdom of Israel and the Southern Kingdom split into the Kingdom of Judah.

The Kingdom of Israel 931 – 720 BC

  • The Great Prophets Elijah and Elisha was part of the Northern Kingdom in the 9th Century under the Omrides
  • Omri him self founder of the dynasty selected Samria as his Capital he constructed Royal Buildings and defenses which have been founded by excavations.
  • Ahab Son of Omri was a hero and a villain of the stories of the prophets mostly known as the contest at mount carmel with prophet Elijah and evently he died at ramoth gildead in Jordan during International Military Exercises
  • in the 8th Century the Assyrian Empire had controlled the Fertile Crescent conquering the Aramaen Kingdoms of Syria and threated the two Israelite States
  • in 721/722 BC after the Fall of Samria the Captail of Kingdom of Israel by Assyrian Emepror Sargon II , Assyria Had Fully Controlled the Kingdom of Israel
  • First Exile ( Kingdom of Israel ) Sargun II conqured Samaria and more than 27,000 Ihabitants
  • Most of the population taken to Gozan in northern syria and Medes in Northern Iran
  • in their place Assyrians brought deported People from Syria and Babylon to fill the empty Territory they were later called as Samartians this is just a theory of the origins of the Samartians
  • The Province Turned into an Assyrian Province called Samaria
  • The Ten Tribes disappeared from history it was the end of Israel Kingdom

Kingdom of Judah 931 – 586 BC

  • Kingdom of Judah moved back and forth between periods of Prosperity and weakness, when it was strong it controlled Edom and the caravan routes to the south , when it was weak it shrank behind it is own narrow boundaries.
  • Great Kings such as Josiah , Asa , Jehoshaphat and Uzziah
  • by the time the Assyrian Empire Gradually got weakend , the Babylon Empire ( Neo Babylonian Empire) grew stronger and by 600 BC it had controlled all mesopotamia.
  • in 586 BC Jerusalem fell at the hands of the NEO Babylonian Empire at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar II and the people of judah were exiled and the Solomon Temple was Destroyed , tens of thousands were dispersed in the Region of Babylon and in the area of Modern Iran
  • The Term Yehud -> Jews after the babylon exile was given to all Israelites after the exile
  • Disaproa a new term used to describe the scatterd jewish community who are away from the land of Israel

The Persian Period 539 – 332 BC ( Achaemenid Empire )

  • in 539 BC cyrus the Great King of Persia Covered the whole of the Middle East
  • One of First Acts of Cyrus that Judah be Restored and the Temple of Jerusalem be rebuilt , A Large Number of Jewish Exiles in Babylonia has been returned
  • Work on the second Temple has been done around 515 B.C and the Walls of Jerusalem was built again in 52 Days
  • During this period the Jews had to suffer the hostality of the Samartians until a Jewish Governor , Nehemiah was appointed in the middle of the 5th century B.C.E
  • Nehemiah political manuvers achived a quasi independance and the morale of the people strengthened by religious reforms of Esdras
  • Nehemiah on his second visit to Jerusalem strengthened His fellow Jews observance of the Sabbath and ended the Custom of Jewish men marrying foreign-born wives
  • Therefore Nehemiah Act helped seperating Judeas from their NON-Jewish Neighbors, nehemih work in Israel continued by later religious Leader Ezra
  • We can summery the following , Temple was rebuilt in 520-516 BC
  • Walls of Jerusalem rebuilt 444 BC
  • Establishing Jewish Law in Judah 458 BC

Persian Administative Reforms took place , it was divided into large administrative units called satrapies ,These Satrapies placed governors called satraps over them as method of insuring full control over the Persian Empire, these Administative forms implemented by Darius Phoenicia, Palestine-Syria and Cyprus were the 5th provice ( satrapy )

It is known during this period that High priests who struck their own Coins in Judah, the First jewish coin seems to have been a small silver piece of the 5th Century BC originating from Hebron, even though there is two hypothesis one could be that jews accepted this coin because the persians were kind to the jewish people and return them from the exile or it could be they didn’t accept those coins at all because it is well known that you shall not make any Idols “Do not represent gods by any carved statue or picture of anything in the heaven above, on the earth below, or in the water below the land.”

The First usage of Palestine

The First Useage for the Term Palestine refer to the Area between Phoenecia and Egypt in the 5th Century BC , when herodotus wrote of a district of syr,a Called Palestine in his book ” The Histories” which included the Judean Mountains and the Jordan Rift valley, he called it Palaistine

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Notes on History

  • Christos : Anointed
  • Mashiyach: Anointed
  • Jesus Christ Have been anointed with the Holy Spirit
  • Anointed One is the Chosen One, Christ was not originally a name but a title derived from the Greek word Christos
  • Jesus Name ( Yeshu’a) , the name jesus comes from a Greek translation of the aramic short form yeshu’a
  • more appropriate translation for jesus name is God Rescues
  • Jesus – For he will save his people from their sins
  • Herod Died in the 4th BC , his kingdom was split according to his 6th will
  • Between three sons of King Herod Antipas , Archelaus and Herod Philip who ruled as client kings of Rome for Emperor Augusts
  • Archelaus Ruled Judea, Idumea and Samaria
  • Antipas Galilee and the Perea
  • Herod Philip Covering North-East of Galilee
  • How Many Wives of King Herod ? Three Wives
  • Herod Antipas Will kill John The Baptist behead him
  • Antipas Meaning like the father, Regned in Galilee and Peraea until 39 CE then banished by the Roman Emperor Augusts
  • for Archelaus ( meaning master of the people) he was removed at request of his subjects after 10 years only
  • Pontius Pilate( Family name and then first name ) – Roman Family and could be from Greek Sea
  • Pilate Name armed with Spear
  • Herod Agripa First and Second are Important Figures in the History of Christianity
  • The First Jewish Revolt 66 C.E one of the greatest catastrophes in Jewish Life
  • 70 AD Jerusalem Fell and the Temple was Burned – August 29
  • 15 April 73 AD masada has been Destoried
  • Josephus died 100 AD in Rome, Josephus was Leader he fought against the Romans During the First Jewish Roman War , Josephus assumed the role of a prohpet and he said Vespasian will be an emperor after he became Roman Citizen
  • Josephus Changed his name Joseph Ben Matthias – Titus Flavius Josephus
  • Josephus Recorded jewish history – including the siege of Masada 15th April 73 AD
  • Josephus wrote two books and he also talked about Jesus Christ
  • Legion X stayed in Holy Land
  • Nablus is Built by Titus and it was called Neapolis which means the new City


  • Romans Spoke Latin
  • Pax = Peace
  • Origins of Rome Around 753 BC they were fed by Wolf
  • Romulus was killed by the First King of Rome, the name come from Romeo and Romulus
  • Julius Ceaser took full power over Rome as its dictator
  • Assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC , mark antony, lepidus and octavian (Augustus )
  • Augustus ( Octavian ) First Emperor of Rome not Julius Ceaser but Mark Anthony
  • Augustus Ruled for 56 Years the Senate Elevated Augusts to the Status of God
  • Augusts Famous Saying – I found Rome a City of Brick and made it into City of Marble
  • at the Rule of Tiberius Jesus Was Crucified
  • The Romans Were Masters of City Planning
  • Roman Finger Prints = The roman Road System, Mile Stone, Aqueducts, Baths , Hippodromes, Theaters
  • The Roman Road 80,000 KM of hard surface highway , Romand Road in Jericho , Banias and Tel Dan, and all roads lead to Rome
  • 0 Point in Dead Sea Level is in Rome
  • Romans not the first to introduce roads in Palestine
  • Chalcolithic and Early Bronze Age routes routes connected different settlements and cities.
  • The Roman Roads Had Four Layers starting with Rubble, Slabs of Stone, Pebbles and Gravel and then smoothing paving Stones
  • North to South Means Cardo – Every Roman Have Roads
  • Decomano West to East Roman Road
  • Sebastya in name of Augusts King Herod Friend
  • Roman Mile is 1481 M – sometimes bearing inscription and marking distance
  • Golden Mile Stone in Rome and it is distance was 0.0
  • Aquaduct – Aqua = Water – Ducre = Lead
  • Some Water Pipes have the name of the Legions on it
  • They Used only gravity to move water
  • Baths in Roman Empire they were huge bath complexes
  • The Only Dome Structure from Roman Time Herodium, The Tepidarium ( The Warm Room )
  • The Public Paths was also gathering Point
  • People in public paths could relax, keep clear and keep up with the latest News
  • The Dome is round in Baths so it doesn’t have water leaking from the roof
  • Baths were very cheap in the Roman Empire
  • Bath became very common in every city
  • Private Bath means he is rich person at that time , only for villa/Elite or Emperror
  • apodyterium – Changing Room
  • Palestrae – Execise Room
  • Notatio = Open air swimming pool
  • Calidarium = Hot room very hot and heated
  • Tepidarium = warm room
  • Frigidarium = cool / Cold room
  • Strigil as massage to get rid of body’s Dirt
  • Amphitheaters which mean theatre with seats on all sides
  • Ampi : on both sides or around
  • Theatron : Place of Viewing
  • Ampitheater in Beit Guvrin where Aza Camp Originally Came from
  • Ampitheater is gladiatorial games and venationes ( hunting Animals ) , contests of beats with one another or men with beasts.
  • Beit Guvrin only 3500 Seats, but others 20,000 and even more
  • Roman Theater in Caesarea, Sebastia and Beth Shean
  • Hippodrome, Hippos = Horse, Dromos = course/racetrack
  • Hippodrome U shape , in Ceasarea there is one
  • Forum is a public and commercial square in Ancient Rome, It is taken from Greek Wrod Aroga
  • Forum was usually surrounded by a colonnade , included a basilica and a temple
  • Basilica was a large public building, and the first basilicas had no religious use

Archaeology as a tool to understand Heritage

What is Archaeology as Definition ?
It is the Study of Past Cultures through Material (physical ) remains that people left behind, Materials such as small artifacts (pottery sherds) to large buildings, anything that people created or modified is part of archaeological record.

What The Archaeological Materials ?

  • Pottery
  • Glass
  • Bones
  • Plants
  • Coins
  • Inscriptions
  • Mosaics

What are the Benefits of finding archaeological Materials?
to understand and recreate all aspects of past culture, they are only clues to us, and as archaeologist they help us to reconstruct the live of ancient people, they are like pieces of giant puzzle that we as archaeologist try to solve.

How we know about the Remains we find as archaeologists ?Through information Coins or inscriptions provide to us, or styles and typologies that we find in mosaics, potteries and decorations and through using Advanced Techniques known as carbon 14 in bones and planets .

What is Carbon 14 and who founded it?
Williard F. Libby 1948 ,

Hellenistic Period

Alexander the Macedonian from 5th BC till 4/6 BC everything changed in the holy land, from language, culture and political powers they all changed completely.

When Was Alexander Macedonian Region?
336 till 323 BC

What was Most Rivals For the Greeks at Times of Alexander the Great?
Persians and the Persian Empire

What was Alexander the Great dream?
To Unite the World as a Greek Entity.

What Hellenism Means?              
It is Civilizing the world with a greek vision and even It was a concept that continued after his death , they spread there cultures not just regular occupation to those countries.

What Hellenistic means?
To Identify Greek and to speak Greek.

What is the Common Language of the region of the First century?
It was Aramaic

What did Greeks Spread In Palestine and the whole middle east?
Mosaics, Culture, Literature, Traditions, Believes, Ideas and Religion.

When Was the Persian Empire Brought to an End?
331 BC

When Alexander the Great died?
He Died at age 33 in Babylon , and at year 323

After Alexander the Great died who took the following?:

Egypt and Palestine: Ptolemaic Kingdom
Syria and Babylon : Seleucid Kingdom

When the Hellenistic Period started and finished?
323 till 31 BC , It started with the Alexander the Great

  • First Control of Palestine Ptolemaic Rule the Seleucid Rule
  • At one time Greek became the common language of the Mediterranean region
  • Alexandria was at one time the biggest populations of jews
  • Pontius Pilate used Greek with  Latin and Hebrew for the Title on the cross to identify Jesus Christ As King of the Jews
  • Greek Culture Merged with Local Cultures and also spread in Palestine
  • Jesus Spoke Aramic
  • Palestine Under Ptolemy Secured Control of Judah (Historical Palestine )
  • Ptolemy as the king of Egypt,
  • Last Ptolemaic Queen of Egypt was Cleopatra (VII) 8th
  • Cleopatra never knew Egyptian they used translators
  • Library of Alexandria was very famous but later it was burned down
  • Palestine Under Ptolemaic Rule ( 312 – 200 BC )
  • Palestine at time of Ptolemaic the reason they were interested in it becaue it was  A. Buffer State        B. Agricultural Hinterland
  • Palesitne Served as source of olive oil, wines, slaves…
  • Hyparchies means provinces in Greek
  • At Ptolemaic Period Palestine was  A. Idumea B.  Judea C. Samaria D.  Galilee
  • Each Hyparchy (A Ruler, very high ranking governor ) they were Greek and had governor and financial Officer, Commander of the Army
  • Both Ptolemies and Seleucids were Greek Origins
  • Many of the military clashes between ptolemies and seleucids happened in Palestine Area also
  • Many major Cities were given Greek Names
  • Many Cities specially upper classes were motivated to adopt the greek language
  • Palestine in the Time of Seleucid 200-142 BC
  • In 200 BC big battle happened between ptolemy’s and Seleucid, the Seleucid won and Seleucid time of ruling Palestine started between 200-142 BC
  • When was the Revolt of the Maccabee’s? 167 – 160 BC
  • Seleucids held historical Palestine till the revolt of the Maccabee’s
  • The Selecuids didn’t like small small administrative units, so they changed the names to only Samaria , Idumea and Paralia
  • Selecuids changed name of Jerusalem to Antiochia .
  •  The Maccabean Revolt was 7 years from 167 till 160 BC
  • The Maccabe War was against Aniochus IV
  • At Time of Maccabe’s there was need of money and it happened to be at time of King Antiochus IV and he was a bit crazy,
  • Period 188 BC onward was a hard time for Seleucid dynasty , it was at war with Rome and they lost against Rome, it costed them a lot and they were in financial troubles and they were paying 15,000 Talents, and because of that they wanted money, so they attempt to take treasures from the Temple.
  • Antiochus IV believed himself to be manifestation of the God Zeus and he was determined that his kingdom should adopt a purely Greek Culture.
  • Antiochus IV was afraid of the wide spread of the Roman Empire, so he wanted to enforce Greek Traditions and Culture by uniting it all under Greek Traditions, Culture and Language.
  • Jewish Way of Life is Different than Hellenism  
  • It was about being Loyal to the Word of God not Loyal to the Human King
  • Because Israelites didn’t worship Antiochus IV or follow his Hellenistic transitions he fought Israel’s Religious Practices
  • Antiochus IV he put Greek High Priest Philhellene High Priest ( Lover of Greek and Greek Culture ) he was trying to take the judaism belief out of the roots
  • The Trouble Started when he began to sold the High Priesthood
  • Orthodox Jews Who rejected Hellensim
  • Reformed Jews Who Accepted and Supported hellenism
  • the reform part that supported hellensim gained support from Antiochus and there is high priest name jason ( joshua ) he played big role in starting the Macabe’s Revolt
  • Aron the Brother of Moses was the First High Priest
  • High Priest allowed to enter holy of the holiest only on Yom Kippur , only once a year
  • high priest had charge of temple finances and administration
  • High Priest collected taxes and maintained order as the recognized head of the nation
  • High Priests from 516 BC till 70 AD
  • Jason Decided to make revolution because Antiochus sold his high priest to another.
  • Antiochus Attached them on Sabbath with 22,000 men, killing most of male population , women and children to slavery, demolishing jeruslaem defense and all jewish rights are outlaw ( Sabbath observance, dietary, laws and daily sacrifices)
  • Also Antiochus put Altar to Zeus outside the Temple on 25th of December 168 BC and sacrafices were to be made at the feet of an Idol
  • Antiochus built Citadel Also the name Acra(fortress) it became as symbol of judah’s enslavement
  • Revolt of Maccabe’s Started from Khirbet Umm al Umdan
  • It have ruins from Persion to Islamic Peridos
  • mattathias sparked the resistance movment when he was asked by a seleucid Greek government represntive to offer sacrafice to Greek Gods, He not only refused to do so but killed with his hands the Jewish Person who tried to do the sacrafice and the represntitve of the king.
  • Mattathias went to the high lands and they started attacking from there guriella wars and once they refused to fight on sabbath and lost 1000 then they started to fight on Sabbath
  • The Hasemonean Called the dynasty that descended from the Maccabees by Josephus
  • Judas Maccabeus saw him self as Divine Leader
  • in December 164 BC Judas Maccabeus recaptured Jerusalem and removed all pagansim and Idols in the Temple
  • Hannukka ( Dedication ) – It happen in december
  • Judas Lost his life about 161/160
  • Simon Succeeded jonathan and he became a ruler , Hasmonean Independent Kingdom (142-63 BC )
  • at time of Simon there were no more taxes to be paid by the Jews


Hellensitic Period, I talked about this period it started from 332 BC till 63 BC , the most important person to remember in this period, Alexander the Macedonian, he gonna occupy half of the world in ten years, he will occupy palestine also, in 332 BC he will occupy it, he had philiosphy it was called hellenism , if you want to be modern o, you have to learn the greek culture, you have to adapt it ,it was hellas, hellas the greek passport, it have word hellas, culture, tradition, belifes it was all greek, that why explain in palestine at that time they started to speak greek, we learned the aramic language from assyrian babylonian, this colonizaltion process are the INRI or INBI , three languages of king of the jews, greek , latin and aramic , cities urbanization started to change, we have in Palestine system implemented,

Alexander the Great will die, he wouldn’t tell who will succeed him , one of them was called patlomus and one called seucuids , at one time it was under potolomus they were nice for the local people they didn’t make troubles with the jews they gave them rights, it was good with us, and they started to change the hyparcihies , samaria – edomia, galiliee and perera , big war happend and selecuids take palestine .

Antoiotucs VI started attacking the belives of the jews, because he needed the money when he lost war against the romans, the first thing he did he sold the priest title, there were two kinds of priests , reformed and orthodox jews , jason (joshua)he was promised to be the high priest and he put another one after 3 years, then joshua decided to take over Jerusalem over hearing false news, antoiotucs VI he sent 22,000 people , one small event happend in village mannuachus he killed the represntitive and they started to rebelle they went to central hight lands , juda maccabues he was the famous leader and divine leader and appointed by god, he will later be killed , hashmonean according to josephus the great grandfather of matthasus .

another analysisis say hasmonnean from tribe of simon,
one of the sons of matyasous will be simon , 142 , the kingdom then started to get bigger and bigger, john hercanus


How We Define Heritage?

  • An Inheritance : something that have been inherited
  • A Valued Objects : such as historic buildings
  • A Relation with Value : relating to things of special architectural, historical or natural value that are preserved for the nation

There is Two Kinds of Heritage?
* Tangible ( physical object like building or place)
* intangible ( like language or customs or traditions )

Give me exampls of things as Heritage?
* Cultural Heritage Sites
* Historic Cities
* Cultural Landscapes
* Natural Sacred Sites
* Underwater Cultural Heritage
* Museums
* Movable Cultural Heritage
* Handicrafts
* Documentary and Digital Heritage
* Oral Traditions
* Languages
* Festival Events
* Rites and Beliefs
* Music and song
* Performing Arts
* Literature
* Culinary Traditions – عادات مطبخية
* Traditional Sports and Games

Tell me More about Heritage as Tangible form?
it is understood to be physical object represented by places and Sites( Archaeological, Historical, Religious )

Tell me more About Heritage as Intangible Form?
Practices of Heritage Inherited from one generation to the next like Language, Culture, Literature, Customs, Traditions and Habits

Heritage Calssification ?
Cultural and Natural Heritage

What is Cultural Heritage?
It is the Legacy of physical Artifacts and intangible attributes

What is Natural Heritage?
It Refers to the sum total of the elements of biodiversity including flora and fauna and ecosystem types , associated with geological structures and formations.

What are Examples of Mixed Heritage we have in Israel/Palestine?
* Baha’i Gardens in Haifa
* Saint George Monastery, Wadi Al Qelt
* Mar Saba Monastry

  • Heritage have to be considered something important enough to be passed down from one generation to the other

Bronze Age

Bronze Age is a Time period connected with the use of Bronze, Primitive “Proto Writing” Started at that age, and we can see early features of Urban Civilization.

Who started the Stone-Bronze-Iron System? Three Age System – The Near East ?
Dutch Expert his name Christian Jurgensen Thomsen
Stone AGe – Pre History till 3300 BC
Bronze Age 3300 BC till 1200 BC
Iron Age 1200 BC till 500 BC

What Are the Dispute of the Copper Age?
– Some Scholars Consider Chalcolithic Period as transitional Period
– Other Consider Beginning of the Bronze Age is from the Chalcolithic Period where they started to use copper
– Other See Chalcolithic period as final stage of using Stone

When the Real Start of the Bronze Age?
It Was primary metal used during the Early Bronze Age About 3300 – 2000 BC , but it became common during the Middle Bronze Age about 2000 – 1500 BC