Shechem

Shechem

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Shechem was a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite city mentioned in the Amarna letters
Amarna letters
The Amarna letters are an archive of correspondence on clay tablets, mostly diplomatic, between the Egyptian administration and its representatives in Canaan and Amurru during the New Kingdom...

, and is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible
Hebrew Bible
The Hebrew Bible is a term used by biblical scholars outside of Judaism to refer to the Tanakh , a canonical collection of Jewish texts, and the common textual antecedent of the several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament...

 as an Israelite
Israelite
According to the Bible the Israelites were a Hebrew-speaking people of the Ancient Near East who inhabited the Land of Canaan during the monarchic period .The word "Israelite" derives from the Biblical Hebrew ישראל...

 city of the tribe of Manasseh and the first capital of the Kingdom of Israel. Traditionally associated with Nablus
Nablus
Nablus is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, approximately north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located in a strategic position between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center.Founded by the...

, it is now identified with the site of Tell Balatah in Balata al-Balad
Balata al-Balad
Balata al-Balad is a Palestinian village in the Nablus Governorate in the northeastern West Bank, located east of Nablus.-Etymology:The village's name is Balata, the name of an ancient Arab village, which was preserved by local residents...

 in the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

.

Geographical position


Its position is indicated in the Bible: it lay north of Bethel
Bethel
Bethel was a border city described in the Hebrew Bible as being located between Benjamin and Ephraim...

 and Shiloh, on the high road going from Jerusalem to the northern districts (Judges
Book of Judges
The Book of Judges is the seventh book of the Hebrew bible and the Christian Old Testament. Its title describes its contents: it contains the history of Biblical judges, divinely inspired prophets whose direct knowledge of Yahweh allows them to act as decision-makers for the Israelites, as...

 xxi, 19), at a short distance from Michmethath (Joshua
Book of Joshua
The Book of Joshua is the sixth book in the Hebrew Bible and of the Old Testament. Its 24 chapters tell of the entry of the Israelites into Canaan, their conquest and division of the land under the leadership of Joshua, and of serving God in the land....

 17:7) and of Dothain (Genesis 37:12-17); it was in the hill-country of Ephraim (Joshua 20:7; 21:21; 1 Kings 12:25; 1 Chronicles 6:67; 7:28), immediately below Mount Gerizim
Mount Gerizim
Mount Gerizim is one of the two mountains in the immediate vicinity of the West Bank city of Nablus , and forms the southern side of the valley in which Nablus is situated,...

 (Judges 9:6-7). These indications are completed by Josephus, who says that the city lay between Mount Ebal
Mount Ebal
Mount Ebal is one of the two mountains in the immediate vicinity of the Palestinian city of Nablus in the West Bank , and forms the northern side of the valley in which Nablus is situated, the southern side being formed by Mount Gerizim...

 and Mt. Garizim, and by the Madaba map
Madaba Map
The Madaba Map is part of a floor mosaic in the early Byzantine church of Saint George at Madaba, Jordan. The Madaba Map is a map of the Middle East. Part of it contains the oldest surviving original cartographic depiction of the Holy Land and especially Jerusalem...

, which places Sychem, also called Sikima between the Tour Gobel (Ebal) and the Tour Garizin (Garizim). The site of Shechem in patristic sources is almost invariably identified with or located close to the town of Nablus/Flavia Neapolis
Nablus
Nablus is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, approximately north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located in a strategic position between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center.Founded by the...

.

Early and biblical history


The old city of Shechem dates back to about an estimated four thousand years.

Shechem is mentioned in the third-millennium Eblaite Tablets found at Tell Mardikh in the context of a city of which Rasap (Resheph
Resheph
Resheph was a Canaanite deity of plague and war. In Egyptian iconography Resheph is depicted wearing the crown of Upper Egypt surmounted in front by the head of a gazelle. He has links with Theban war god Montu and was thought of as a guardian deity in battle by many Egyptian pharaohs...

) is the patron deity. Shechem was a commercial center due to its position in the middle of vital trade routes through the region. It traded in local grapes, olives, wheat, livestock and pottery between the middle Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 and the late Hellenic
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

 Period (1900-100 BC).

Shechem had been a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite settlement, mentioned on an Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

ian stele of a noble at the court of Senusret III
Senusret III
Khakhaure Senusret III was a pharaoh of Egypt. He ruled from 1878 BC to 1839 BC, and was the fifth monarch of the Twelfth Dynasty of the Middle Kingdom. Among his achievements was the building of the Sisostris Canal...

 (c. 1880
19th century BC
-Events:* Hittite empire in Hattusa, Anatolia.* 1900 BC: Proto-Greek invasions of Greece.* c. 1900 BC: Minoan Old Palace period starts in Crete.* c. 1900 BC: Fall of last Sumerian dynasty....

1840 BC
19th century BC
-Events:* Hittite empire in Hattusa, Anatolia.* 1900 BC: Proto-Greek invasions of Greece.* c. 1900 BC: Minoan Old Palace period starts in Crete.* c. 1900 BC: Fall of last Sumerian dynasty....

).

In the Amarna Letters
Amarna letters
The Amarna letters are an archive of correspondence on clay tablets, mostly diplomatic, between the Egyptian administration and its representatives in Canaan and Amurru during the New Kingdom...

 of about 1350 BC, Shachmu (i.e. Shechem) was the center of a kingdom carved out by Labaya
Labaya
Labaya was a Habiru, possibly Canaanite, warlord who lived contemporaneously with Pharaoh Akhenaten . Labaya is mentioned in several of the Amarna Letters , which is practically all scholars know about him...

 (or Labayu), a Canaanite warlord who recruited mercenaries from among the Habiru
Habiru
Habiru or Apiru or ˁpr.w was the name given by various Sumerian, Egyptian, Akkadian, Hittite, Mitanni, and Ugaritic sources to a group of people living as nomadic invaders in areas of the Fertile Crescent from Northeastern Mesopotamia and Iran to the borders of Egypt in Canaan...

. Labaya was the author of three Amarna letters, and his name appears in 11 of the other 382 letters, referred to 28 times, with the basic topic of the letter, being Labaya himself, and his relationship with the rebelling, countryside Habiru
Habiru
Habiru or Apiru or ˁpr.w was the name given by various Sumerian, Egyptian, Akkadian, Hittite, Mitanni, and Ugaritic sources to a group of people living as nomadic invaders in areas of the Fertile Crescent from Northeastern Mesopotamia and Iran to the borders of Egypt in Canaan...

.

Shechem first appears in the Bible
Bible
The Bible refers to any one of the collections of the primary religious texts of Judaism and Christianity. There is no common version of the Bible, as the individual books , their contents and their order vary among denominations...

 in Genesis 12:6-8, which records how Abraham
Abraham
Abraham , whose birth name was Abram, is the eponym of the Abrahamic religions, among which are Judaism, Christianity and Islam...

 reached the "great tree of Moreh
Moreh
Moreh is a name of a location, commonly used in the Genesis.-Torah locality:Translators who consider the obscure elon moreh of Genesis 12:6 to be the name of a locality, render it as "the plains of Moreh". Translators who consider the term to be a sacred tree or grove, often render it "terebinth",...

" at Shechem and offered sacrifice nearby. At Shechem, Abram "built an altar to the Lord who had appeared to him ... and had given that land to his descendants" (Gen 12:6-7). This Biblical account, considered by some to be the first place Abraham
Abraham
Abraham , whose birth name was Abram, is the eponym of the Abrahamic religions, among which are Judaism, Christianity and Islam...

, Sarah
Sarah
Sarah or Sara was the wife of Abraham and the mother of Isaac as described in the Hebrew Bible and the Quran. Her name was originally Sarai...

, Lot
Lot (Bible)
Lot is a man from the Book of Genesis chapters 11-14 and 19, in the Hebrew Bible. Notable episodes in his life include his travels with his uncle Abram ; his flight from the destruction of Sodom, in the course of which Lot's wife looked back and became a pillar of salt; and the seduction by his...

 and their party stopped upon their entry to Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

. The Bible states that on this occasion, God confirmed the covenant
Covenant (biblical)
A biblical covenant is an agreement found in the Bible between God and His people in which God makes specific promises and demands. It is the customary word used to translate the Hebrew word berith. It it is used in the Tanakh 286 times . All Abrahamic religions consider the Biblical covenant...

 he had first made with Abraham in Harran
Harran
Harran was a major ancient city in Upper Mesopotamia whose site is near the modern village of Altınbaşak, Turkey, 24 miles southeast of Şanlıurfa...

, regarding the possession of the land of Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

. That the city of Sichem, the name of which (Hebrew shékém — 'shoulder, saddle') appears to have been suggested by the configuration of the place, existed in the time of Abraham is doubted by a few who think it is referred to in Genesis, xii, 6, by anticipation; but there can be no question touching its existence in Jacob's time (Genesis 33:18, 19); it is certainly mentioned in the El-Amarna letters (letter 289), and is probably the Sakama of the old Egyptian traveler Mohar (fourteenth century B.C.; Muller, "Asien u. Europ.", p. 394, Leipzig, 1893).

On a later sojourn, the sons of Jacob
Jacob
Jacob "heel" or "leg-puller"), also later known as Israel , as described in the Hebrew Bible, the Talmud, the New Testament and the Qur'an was the third patriarch of the Hebrew people with whom God made a covenant, and ancestor of the tribes of Israel, which were named after his descendants.In the...

 avenged their sister
Dinah
According to the Hebrew Bible, Dinah was the daughter of Jacob, one of the patriarchs of the Israelites and Leah, his first wife. The episode of her abduction and violation by a Canaanite prince, and the subsequent vengeance of her brothers Simeon and Levi, commonly referred to as "The Rape of...

's rape (or by another interpretation, seduction) by "Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land" of Shechem — by massacring the city's inhabitants. Later, following the Exodus, Joshua assembled the Israelites in Shechem and encouraged them to reaffirm their adherence to the Torah
Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...

.

Owing to its central position, no less than to the presence in the neighborhood of places hallowed by the memory of Abraham (Genesis 12:6, 7; 34:5), Jacob's Well
Jacob's Well
Jacob's Well is a deep well hewn of solid rock that has been associated in religious tradition with Jacob for roughly two millennia...

 (Genesis 33:18-19; 34:2, etc.), and the tomb of Joseph
Joseph (Hebrew Bible)
Joseph is an important character in the Hebrew bible, where he connects the story of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in Canaan to the subsequent story of the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt....

 (Joshua 24:32), the city was destined to play an important part in the history of Israel. The city, including its Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 temple, fell to the Israelites sometime before 1000 BC.

After Gideon's death, Abimelech
Abimelech (Judges)
In the Book of Judges in the Hebrew Bible, Abimelech was a son of the great judge Gideon ; thus his name אֲבִימֶלֶךְ / אֲבִימָלֶךְ can best be interpreted "my father, the king". "Abimelech", a name claiming the inherited right to rule, was also a common name of the Philistine kings...

, his son by a Sichemite concubine, was made king (Judges
Book of Judges
The Book of Judges is the seventh book of the Hebrew bible and the Christian Old Testament. Its title describes its contents: it contains the history of Biblical judges, divinely inspired prophets whose direct knowledge of Yahweh allows them to act as decision-makers for the Israelites, as...

 9:1-45). Yotam, the youngest son of Gideon, made a famous speech on Mount Gerizim
Mount Gerizim
Mount Gerizim is one of the two mountains in the immediate vicinity of the West Bank city of Nablus , and forms the southern side of the valley in which Nablus is situated,...

 known as Yotam's allegory where he warned the people of Shechem about Abimelech's future tyranny (Judges 9:7-20). When the city rose in rebellion three years later, Abimelech took it, utterly destroyed it, and burnt the temple of Baal-berith
Baal-berith
Baal-Berith was the god of the Canaanite city, who later came to be viewed as the demon Baalberith by Christian demonology. According to the Book of Judges, his temple was destroyed when Abimelech quelled the rising of his subjects. The name denotes a form of Ba'al-worship prevailing in Israel,...

 where the people had fled for safety. From the excavations, it was learnt that the city was destroyed in 1100 BC.

It was rebuilt in the 10th century BC and was probably the capital of Ephraim
Ephraim
Ephraim ; was, according to the Book of Genesis, the second son of Joseph and Asenath. Asenath was an Egyptian woman whom Pharaoh gave to Joseph as wife, and the daughter of Potipherah, a priest of On. Ephraim was born in Egypt before the arrival of the children of Israel from Canaan...

 (1 Kings
Books of Kings
The Book of Kings presents a narrative history of ancient Israel and Judah from the death of David to the release of his successor Jehoiachin from imprisonment in Babylon, a period of some 400 years...

 4). Shechem was the place appointed, after Solomon
Solomon
Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

's death, for the meeting of the people of Israel and the investiture of Roboam; the meeting ended in the secession of the ten northern tribes, and Sichem, fortified by Jeroboam
Jeroboam
Jeroboam was the first king of the northern Israelite Kingdom of Israel after the revolt of the ten northern Israelite tribes against Rehoboam that put an end to the United Monarchy....

, became for a while the capital of the new kingdom (1 Kings
Books of Kings
The Book of Kings presents a narrative history of ancient Israel and Judah from the death of David to the release of his successor Jehoiachin from imprisonment in Babylon, a period of some 400 years...

 12:1; 14:17; 2 Chronicles 10:1).

When the kings of Israel moved first to Tirzah
Tirzah (ancient city)
Tirzah was a town in the Samarian highlands northeast of Shechem; it is generally identified with Tell el-Farah , NE of modern Nablus.-In the Bible:...

, and later on to Samaria
Samaria
Samaria, or the Shomron is a term used for a mountainous region roughly corresponding to the northern part of the West Bank.- Etymology :...

, Shechem lost its importance, and we do not hear of it until after the fall of Jerusalem (587 B.C.; Jeremiah 12:5). The events connected with the restoration were to bring it again into prominence. When, on his second visit to Jerusalem, Nehemias expelled the grandson of the high priest Eliashib (probably the Manasse of Josephus, "Antiq.", XI, vii, viii), who refused to separate from his alien wife, Sanaballat's daughter, and with him the many Jews, priests and laymen, who sided with the rebel, these betook themselves to Shechem; a schismatic temple was then erected on Mount Garizim and thus Shechem became the "holy city" of the Samaritans. The latter, who were left unmolested while the orthodox Jews were chafing under the heavy hand of Antiochus IV (Antiq.
Antiquities of the Jews
Antiquities of the Jews is a twenty volume historiographical work composed by the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus in the thirteenth year of the reign of Roman emperor Flavius Domitian which was around 93 or 94 AD. Antiquities of the Jews contains an account of history of the Jewish people,...

, XII, v, 5, see also Antinomianism in the Books of the Maccabees) and welcomed with open arms every renegade who came to them from Jerusalem (Antiq., XI, viii, 7), fell about 128 B.C. before John Hyrcanus
John Hyrcanus
John Hyrcanus was a Hasmonean leader of the 2nd century BC.-Name:...

, and their temple was destroyed ("Antiq.", XIII, ix, 1).

During the First Jewish–Roman War, Shechem was destroyed and a Neapolis or "new city" was built nearby by Vespasian
Vespasian
Vespasian , was Roman Emperor from 69 AD to 79 AD. Vespasian was the founder of the Flavian dynasty, which ruled the Empire for a quarter century. Vespasian was descended from a family of equestrians, who rose into the senatorial rank under the Emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty...

 in 72. Eventually, this name became the Arabic Nablus
Nablus
Nablus is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, approximately north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located in a strategic position between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center.Founded by the...

.

Classical and modern history


In Classical times, Shechem was the main settlement of the Samaritans, whose religious center stood on Mount Gerizim, just outside of the town. In Acts
Acts of the Apostles
The Acts of the Apostles , usually referred to simply as Acts, is the fifth book of the New Testament; Acts outlines the history of the Apostolic Age...

 7:16 the place is called Sychem. It is not known whether Sychar in the Gospel of John
Gospel of John
The Gospel According to John , commonly referred to as the Gospel of John or simply John, and often referred to in New Testament scholarship as the Fourth Gospel, is an account of the public ministry of Jesus...

 4:5 refers to Shechem or to a nearby village.

Shechem is also the location of Jacob's Well
Jacob's Well
Jacob's Well is a deep well hewn of solid rock that has been associated in religious tradition with Jacob for roughly two millennia...

, where John 4:5–6 describes Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

' meeting with the woman of Samaria
Samaria
Samaria, or the Shomron is a term used for a mountainous region roughly corresponding to the northern part of the West Bank.- Etymology :...

. Josephus
Josephus
Titus Flavius Josephus , also called Joseph ben Matityahu , was a 1st-century Romano-Jewish historian and hagiographer of priestly and royal ancestry who recorded Jewish history, with special emphasis on the 1st century AD and the First Jewish–Roman War, which resulted in the Destruction of...

, writing in about AD 90 (Jewish Antiquities 4.8.44), placed the city between Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal. Elsewhere he refers to it as Neapolis/Nablus. Other ancient writers refer to it as Nablus or on the outskirts of Nablus. The site near Nablus now identified as Shechem was only stumbled upon in 1903 by a German party of archaeologists led by Dr. Hermann Thiersch is called Tell Balatah, beside the traditional site of Joseph's Tomb
Joseph's Tomb
Joseph's Tomb is a funerary monument located at the eastern entrance to the valley that separates Mounts Gerizim and Ebal, 325 yards northwest of Jacob's Well, on the outskirts of the West Bank city of Nablus, near Tell Balāṭa, the site of biblical Shechem...

 mentioned in (Joshua
Book of Joshua
The Book of Joshua is the sixth book in the Hebrew Bible and of the Old Testament. Its 24 chapters tell of the entry of the Israelites into Canaan, their conquest and division of the land under the leadership of Joshua, and of serving God in the land....

 24:32).

In A.D. 6, Shechem was annexed to the Roman Province of Syria. Some of its inhabitants were of the number of the "Samaritans" who believed in Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 when he tarried two days in the neighborhood, and the city must have been visited by the Apostles on their way from Samaria to Jerusalem (Acts 8:25). Of the Samaritans of Sichem not a few rose up in arms on Mt. Garizim at the time of the Galilean rebellion (A.D. 67); the city was very likely destroyed on that occasion by Cerealis. In A.D. 72, a new city, Flavia Neapolis, was built by Vespasian a 2 kilometers to the west of the old one. This city's name was eventually corrupted to the modern Nablus
Nablus
Nablus is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, approximately north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located in a strategic position between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center.Founded by the...

.

Some fifty years later Hadrian
Hadrian
Hadrian , was Roman Emperor from 117 to 138. He is best known for building Hadrian's Wall, which marked the northern limit of Roman Britain. In Rome, he re-built the Pantheon and constructed the Temple of Venus and Roma. In addition to being emperor, Hadrian was a humanist and was philhellene in...

 restored the temple on Mt. Garizim, and dedicated it to Jupiter. Neapolis, like Shechem, had very early a Christian community, including an early saint, Justin Martyr
Justin Martyr
Justin Martyr, also known as just Saint Justin , was an early Christian apologist. Most of his works are lost, but two apologies and a dialogue survive. He is considered a saint by the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church....

; we hear even of bishops of Neapolis. On several occasions the Christians suffered greatly from the Samaritans, and in 474 the emperor, to avenge an unjust attack of the sect, deprived the latter of Mt. Garizim and gave it to the Christians who built on it a church dedicated to the Blessed Virgin.

The city of Nablus was islamicized in the Abbasid and Ottoman periods. It is still referred to as Shechem by Israelis and Hebrew speakers.

Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva


After Muslims were banned in 1975 from praying at the traditional site for Joseph's tomb
Joseph's Tomb
Joseph's Tomb is a funerary monument located at the eastern entrance to the valley that separates Mounts Gerizim and Ebal, 325 yards northwest of Jacob's Well, on the outskirts of the West Bank city of Nablus, near Tell Balāṭa, the site of biblical Shechem...

, outside Shechem, it was gradually converted to exclusive Jewish use. The Od Yosef Chai (Hebrew
Hebrew language
Hebrew is a Semitic language of the Afroasiatic language family. Culturally, is it considered by Jews and other religious groups as the language of the Jewish people, though other Jewish languages had originated among diaspora Jews, and the Hebrew language is also used by non-Jewish groups, such...

: עוד יוסף חי Joseph still lives) Yeshiva was based there, with Rabbi Yitzchak Ginsburg of Kfar Chabad
Kfar Chabad
Kfar Chabad is a Chabad-Lubavitch village in central Israel. Located between Beit Dagan and Lod, it falls under the jurisdiction of Lod Valley Regional Council. In 2007 it had a population of 5,100.-History:...

 serving as its Rosh Yeshiva (Dean). In October 2000 Arab rioters burnt it down and vandalized the tomb which had been built over the site in 1868. According to the Oslo Agreement the right of all faiths to have access to holy places was to be guaranteed. The site has been off limits to Jewish worshipers since the events of Oct. 2000. Since Nov. 2007 the IDF
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

 has provided entrance for Jews on a once monthly midnight event.

Distinguish from

  • Sichem is an old spelling for Zichem, a Flemish municipality which was named after the biblical Sichem; it is now merged into Scherpenheuvel-Zichem
    Scherpenheuvel-Zichem
    Scherpenheuvel-Zichem is a municipality located in the province of Flemish Brabant, Flemish Region, Belgium, encompassing the towns of Averbode, Messelbroek, Okselaar, Scherpenheuvel, Schoonderbuken, Keiberg, Kaggevinne, Testelt and Zichem . On January 1, 2006 Scherpenheuvel-Zichem had a total...

    .
  • Sekem is an Anthroposophical
    Anthroposophy
    Anthroposophy, a philosophy founded by Rudolf Steiner, postulates the existence of an objective, intellectually comprehensible spiritual world accessible to direct experience through inner development...

     and Islam
    Islam
    Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

    ic foundation and farming village centered on principles for Biodynamic agriculture
    Biodynamic agriculture
    Biodynamic agriculture is a method of organic farming that emphasizes the holistic development and interrelationships of the soil, plants and animals as a self-sustaining system. Biodynamic farming has much in common with other organic approaches, such as emphasizing the use of manures and composts...

     in Egypt; this name refers to Shechem, and to the Ancient Egyptian hieroglyph pronounced 'Sekem' meaning 'vitality
    Vitality
    -Vitality:Etymology: From Latin vita , which means life.Outside of its own existence or source, life is only recognized through some form of expression or dynamic...

    ' or 'life'.

See also

  • Biblical archaeology
    Biblical archaeology
    For the movement associated with William F. Albright and also known as biblical archaeology, see Biblical archaeology school. For the interpretation of biblical archaeology in relation to biblical historicity, see The Bible and history....

  • Kingdom of Israel
  • Nablus
    Nablus
    Nablus is a Palestinian city in the northern West Bank, approximately north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located in a strategic position between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center.Founded by the...


Sources and External links