Mount Ephraim and Benjamin
47. Rimmon - (al-Rammun)
The village of Rammun is located on the south central range, ca. 12 km east
of Ramallah and about 3 km south of et-Taybeh. It forms a remarkable object
in the landscape, being situated on and around the summit of a conical
chalky hill and visible from all directions (Robinson 1841: 440, ed-Dabagh
1991: 335). It is surrounded by the villages of et-Taybeh, Burqa and Deir
Rammun is identified in the Bible with rock Rimmon (Judg 20:45, see
Robinson 1841: 440). It is not to be confused with Rimmon which is identified
by some scholars with er-Rumane north of Nazareth (Negev 1986: 326).
Aharoni (1979: 110) suggests that it has the name of a plant. The name is
mentioned also by Eusebius and Jerome. It is also identified with Rimmon of
the Onomasticon (144: 11). It lies fifteen miles north of Jerusalem, on the
boundaries between the territories of Aelia Capetolina, Jericho and Beitin, but
dependent on Aelia (Avi Yonah 1966: 156). The village of Rammun is identified
with Rimmon mentioned on the Madaba map (Donner 1992: 51, Avi-Yonah
1954: 42, 1976: 91). The identification of the site on the Madaba map
indicates its special religious importance. It was mentioned in the Ottoman
dafters in the late 16 th century as part of Jerusalem district (Hutteroth-Adbulfattah
Archaeological surveys indicate a continuous occupation from the early
Iron Age to modern time, with evidence of Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine,
Crusader, Ayyubid, Mamluk and early Ottoman periods (Finkelstein-Lederman
1977: 538). The majority of the earliest materials were found on
the western slope of the village (Finkelstein 1988: 161). Traces of mosaic pavement
in the mosque of the village was reported in the Departement of Antiquities Mandatorial Files.
Bibliography: Aharoni Y. 1979: The Land of the Bible, Philadelphia. Avi Yonah M. 1954: The Madaba Mosaic Map, Jerusalem. Avi Yonah M. 1966: The Holy Land. From the Persian to the Arab Conquests. ed-Dabagh M.M. 1991: Biladuna Filistin, Vol. VIII:355-56 (Arabic). Donner H. 1992: The Mosaic Map of Madaba, Kampen. Finkelstein I. 1988: The Archaeology of the Israelite Settlement, Jerusalem. Finkelstein I. - Lederman Z. 1977: Highlands of Many Cultures. The Southern Samaria. Survey, Jerusalem, 538-539. Hutteroth W.D. - Abdulfattah K. 1977: Historical Geography of Palestine, Transjordan and Southern Syria in the late 16 th Century, Erlangen. Negev A. (ed.) 1986: The Archaeological Encyclopedia of the Holy Land, New York. Robinson E. 1841: Biblical Researches in Palestine and the Adjacent Regions, Vol. I, p. 440.
Hamdan Taha, "A Byzantine Tomb at the Village of Rammun", Liber Annuus 48 (1998) 335-344 (extract)
P. O'Callaghan (Supplément au Dictionnaire de la Bible, ad v. "Madaba", col. 654)
Remmon. Lettres blanches à l'est de Béthel sur la carte. C'est la roche de Rimmon mentionnée dans Jud., XX,45 sq., XXI,13 (LXX: 'Remmon), et où se réfugièrent les Benjamites. Bien qu'Eusèbe ne parle d'une petra 'Remmon (Onom., p. 144,17) que par rapport à la Remmon de la tribu de Zabulon (Jos., XIX, 13), néanmoins notre roche de Remmon est celle dont parle le même auteur (Onom., p. 144,11 sq.) et qu'il place à 15 milles (22 km) au nord d'Aelia. Aujourd'hui le village de Rammun est bâti sur le roc à 3 km au sud de Taiyibé, ce qui correspond très bien à la donnée de la carte de Madaba.
Bellarmino Bagatti (Ancient Christian Villages of Samaria, Jerusalem - in the press)
The cave of the Christians at al-Rammun
Anthymos' 1838 list mentions that Rimmon had five Christians and a church so ruined that to assist at divine worship, the Christians had to go to Tayyibe. In 1926 Elihu Grant (PEF 1926, 195) wrote about the Weli called el-Gilgal where, according to the inhabitants, if an animal was brought in, it would soon sicken or die. He also describes a large, clean, airy, and comparatively bright cave south of the former, that was called 'the cave of the Christians.'
On a visit in 1936 we saw this large cave, located at the foot of the village, which keeps alive the memory of the Benjaminites who sought refuge there, since, as L. Heidet says, 'the identity of the 'Rock of Rimmon' [Judg 20:45] and present er-Rammun is admitted by all' (DB-IV, 1039).
Editors' note: Recently a Christian tomb with crosses painted on the walls was found. It is published in Liber Annuus 48 (1998), "A Byzantine Tomb at the Village of Rammun", pp. 335-344 by the Palestinian archaeologist H. Taha.
For more sources and bibliography see:
Tabula Imperii Romani. Iudaea - Palaestina (Jerusalem 1994) s.v. "Rimmon I", 215.
Map Section 5 Place Sources