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Mighty Fortifications Uncovered at Bethsaida

Bethsaida Model 2015 (Photo: screenshot)

Recently discovered fortress walls and towers in Bethsaida, Galilee, show that the Geshurite kingdom was more powerful than researchers originally thought.

Massive fortifications surrounding Bethsaida, the capital city of Geshur, indicate that the biblical-era kingdom had been a lot more powerful than assumed, archaeologists say. That conclusion is bolstered by the discovery of numerous monumental towers guarding the road to Bethsaida.

The ruins of Bethsaida sit on a basalt outcrop descending from the Golan Heights, about a mile north from the Sea of Galilee. Among the most striking finds at the site is the massive city gate.

“The city gate [of Geshur] is the largest Iron Age gate complex in the entire country,” Dr. Rami Arav of University of Nebraska, Omaha told Haaretz. "It represents the only preserved city-gate from a capital city in the region from that time."

The Kingdom of Geshur, located east of the Jordan River, coexisted with the kingdoms of Israel and Judah to its south, and with the kingdom of Aram to the north (in present-day Syria).

Tags: Facts and Findings

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