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site of Zânû’a still correspond. In Tibneh we may recognise the Timnah or Timnath of Dan, the city of Samson's wife, to which he went down' from Zorah ; it lies south of west from Zorah, and not more than an hour distant from it. We were therefore now amid the scenes of Samson's history and exploits. Yarmûk seems to represent the Jarmuth of Scripture, a city in the plain of Judah, not far from Socoh."-See ROBINSON'S Researches, vol. ii. pp. 327, 337–344.
BETHSHEMESH. ('AIN SHEMS.)
“ And the ark of the Lord was in the country of the Philistines seven months. And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, What shall we do to the ark of the Lord ? . Then said they Make a new cart, and take two milch kine, on which there hath come no yoke, and tie the kine to the cart, and bring their calves home from them ; and take the ark of the Lord, and lay it upon the cart . . . and send it away, that it may go. And see, if it goeth up
way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then he hath done unto us that great evil : but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us And the men did so; and took two milch kine, and tied them to the cart, and shut up their calves at home
And the kine took the straight way to the way of Bethshemesh, and went along the highway, lowing as they went, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left : and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Bethshemesh. And they of Bethshemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley : and they lifted up their eyes, and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see it. And the cart came into the
field of Joshua, a Bethshemite, and stood there, where there was a great stone; and they clave the wood of the cart, and offered the kine a burnt-offering unto the Lord . . And when the five lords of the Philistines had seen it, they returned to Ekron the same day ...
“ And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the Lord . . . And the people lamented, because the Lord had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter. And the men of Bethshemesh said, Who is able to stand before this holy Lord God ? And they sent messengers to the inhabitants of Kirjath-jearim, saying, The Philistines have brought again the ark of the Lord: come ye down and fetch it up to you.”—1 Samuel vi.
“ And Jehoash king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah ... at Bethshemesh ”...—2 Kings xiv. 13.
“Bethshemesh lay on the border of Judah and belonged to that tribe; although it is not enumerated in the list of its cities, except as having been assigned from it to the priests. In the days of Samuel, it became celebrated for the return of the ark from the Philistines, and the trespass of the inhabitants against the same; for which they were smitten of the Lord. In later times it was the residence of one of Solomon's twelve purveyors, and became the scene of the defeat of Amaziah king of Judah, by Jehoash king of Israel; it was also conquered by the Philistines from king Ahaz with other cities of the plain. ? We hear no more of Bethshemesh until the time of Eusebius and Jerome; and from their age onward, it appears to have remained unknown or forgotten until the present day. The Irshemesh once mentioned on the border of Dan and
1 Josh. xv. 10, xxi. 16; 1 Chron. vi. 59. 2 1 Kings iv. 9; 2 Kings xiv. 11, 12; 2 Chron. xxv. 21, xxviii. 18.
Judah, seems without much question to have been the same with Bethshemesh. 1
“June 8th.-The object of our journey to-day was to be a visit to the ruins of 'Ain Shems, to search for the long-lost Ekron; and then reach Ramleh. We rose early, and were not comforted by the prospect of a very warm and oppressive day. The thermometer rose to 83° in the open air before sunrise. It was nearly five o'clock when we set off. The sun was rising gloriously, and the numerous herds and flocks .. wending their way to their pastures among the hills, presented an animating and pleasing view : . . We stopped half an hour for breakfast ; the site of ’Ain Shems being within view . . . (and reached it at nearly seven o'clock.)
“ The name 'Ain Shems implies a fountain ; but there is now here no water of
kind so called. The place to which the Arabs give this name, consists of the ruins of a modern Arab village of moderate size, evidently built up with ancient materials. But just on the west of this village ... are the manifest traces of an ancient site. Here are the vestiges of a former extensive city, consisting of many foundations and the remains of ancient walls of hewn stone. The materials have indeed been chiefly swallowed up, in the probably repeated constructions of the modern village; but enough yet remains to make it one of the largest and most marked sites, which we had anywhere seen
“ Both the name and the position of this spot seem to indicate the site of the ancient Bethshemesh of the Old Testament.”—ROBINSON's Researches, vol. iii. pp. 16 -19.
1 Josh, xix. 41.
RAMLEH, OR RAMLA. (POSSIBLY ARIMATHEA.) (Matt. xxvii. 57 ; Mark xv. 43; Luke xxiii. 51; John. xix. 38.]
Some reason should be assigned for the mention of Ramleh, (which cannot at present be clearly identified with any ancient, or scriptural site,) in a work expressly devoted to accounts of places mentioned in Scripture. It has been introduced, first, because it is so generally considered as identical with the Arimathea of the New Testament, and therefore so constantly visited and described by travellers ; and secondly, because, though it cannot be proved to be Arimathea, (and the probabilities are that it is not, and that the site of that place is still undiscovered, yet, on the other hand, its identity cannot be entirely disproved ; and lastly, the modern Ramleh is a town of so
consequence, and so connected with accounts of the plain of Sharon, and the adjacent country, that it cannot be wholly passed over without losing many points of interest connected with Biblical geography.
The name Ramleh signifies sand,' and is thus appropriately applied to the town as situated in a sandy plain. It is not an ancient city, but founded in the early part of the eighth century, and soon became flourishing. From its position between Jerusalem and the coast, Ramleh formed an important post for the Crusaders; and continued generally in their hands while they held the holy city, and long afterwards. Before the age of the crusades, christian churches existed at Ramleh. Dr. Robinson considers that the tower is evidently of Muhammedan origin.
“We left ’Akir for Ramleh ... Between these places the plain is less fertile, and is comparatively little cultivated. The approach to Ramleh is over a tract of heavy sand, which continues even among the olivegroves and gardens lying around the town upon this side. We reached Ramleh at twenty minutes before five o'clock, (having left ’Akir at ten minutes before three.)
“With some difficulty we found our way to the house of ’Abûd Murkus, the American consular agent, an upright wealthy Arab of the Greek church, whose acquaintance we had already made at Jerusalem. He and his eldest son were absent at Yâfa ; but we were received with great kindness by the family. The second son, a young man of eighteen or twenty years, did the honours of the house; and conducted us to an
upper room,' a large airy hall, forming a sort of third story upon the flat roof of the house.
As we entered, the mistress of the family came out of her apartment and welcomed us, but we saw no more of her afterwards. In our large room we had opportunity to arrange our toilette a little, for the first time, after three weeks of dwelling in a tent and travelling mostly