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Jerico [Jericho; Ariha; Yeriho]locked

  • Peter Dorrell

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[Jericho; Ariha; Yeriho]

Site on the west bank of the River Jordan some 12 km north-west of the Dead Sea. It lies in a fertile oasis created by a freshwater spring, the ‛Ayn al-Sultan, which accounts for its importance from early times. The site is best known as the location of the oldest city in the world, dating from c. 8000 bc (see below). During the Roman period the city moved to the area of the modern town, and from the 2nd century bc the Hasmonaean and Herodian rulers built palaces and gardens at Tulul Abu al-Alaiq on the Wadi Qilt, about 2 km east of modern Jerico; a hippodrome and amphitheatre mentioned by Josephus have been tentatively identified near by at Tel al-Sammarat. Some 3 km north of modern Jerico lies the hunting palace of Khirbat al-Mafjar, a fine example of Umayyad palace architecture attributed to the caliph al-Walid II (reg...

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