Ancient Sources

The Sea-coast



96. Ashdod, which is also Azotus - (Isdud)

ORIGINAL TEXTS


Asdod in sorte tribus Iudae, quae nunc vocatur Azotus, in qua derelicti sunt gigantes, qui appellabantur Enacim. Et est usque hodie insigne oppidum Palaestinae.
(Jerome 21:21-23)

Azotus quae supra Asdod, usque hodie non ignobile municipium Palaestinae, et una de quinque civitatibus Allofylorum, decreta quidem tribui Iudae, sed non retenta ab ea, quia nequaquam veteres accolas potuit expellere.
(Jerome 23:13-16)


ENGLISH TRANSLATION

Eusebius, Onomasticon 20:18-20 (ca. 295 A.D.); Jerome 21:21-23 (ca. 390 A.D.)
Ashdod (Jos 11:22), in the lot of the tribe of Judah, now called Azotus, where the giants who were called Enakim were left, and today it is a famous town of Palestine.

Eusebius, Onomasticon 22:11-14 (ca. 295 A.D.); Jerome 23:13-16 (ca. 390 A.D.)
Azotus (Jos 13:3) is Ashdod that was mentioned above, and it is still a town not without distinction in Palestine. Once it was one of the five cities of the Philistines, which was allotted to the tribe of Judah but never actually came into its hands, for (the tribe) could never drive out its former inhabitants.

BIBLICAL BACKGROUND

Josh. 11:21 The Anakim are wiped out
At that time Joshua came and wiped out the Anakim from the hill country, from Hebron, from Debir, from Anab, and from all the hill country of Judah, and from all the hill country of Israel; Joshua utterly destroyed them with their towns. None of the Anakim was left in the land of the Israelites; some remained only in Gaza, in Gath, and in Ashdod. So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the Lord had spoken to Moses; and Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel according to their tribal allotments. And the land had rest from war.

1Sam. 5:1-9 The ark is brought to Ashdod
When the Philistines captured the ark of God, they brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod; then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and placed it beside Dagon. When the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, there was Dagon, fallen on his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place. But when they rose early on the next morning, Dagon had fallen on his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off upon the threshold; only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. This is why the priests of Dagon and all who enter the house of Dagon do not step on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day. The hand of the Lord was heavy upon the people of Ashdod, and he terrified and struck them with tumors, both in Ashdod and in its territory. And when the inhabitants of Ashdod saw how things were, they said, "The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us; for his hand is heavy on us and on our god Dagon." So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, "What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel?" The inhabitants of Gath replied, "Let the ark of God be moved on to us." So they moved the ark of the God of Israel to Gath. But after they had brought it to Gath, the hand of the Lord was against the city, causing a very great panic; he struck the inhabitants of the city, both young and old, so that tumors broke out on them.

Is. 20:1-2 The capture of Ashdod by Sargon king of Assyria
In the year that the commander-in-chief, who was sent by King Sargon of Assyria, came to Ashdod and fought against it and took it - at that time the Lord had spoken to Isaiah son of Amoz, saying, "Go, and loose the sackcloth from your loins and take your sandals off your feet," and he had done so, walking naked and barefoot.

MORE ANCIENT SOURCES

Herodotus, Historiae, II,157 (5th cent. B.C.)
Psammetichus [664-610 B.C.] ruled Egypt fot fifty-four years; for twenty-nine of these he sat before Azotus, a great city in Syria, and besieged it till he took it. Azotus held out against a siege longer than any city of which I have heard.

Josephus, Antiquities 5.2.4 (1st cent. A.D.)
(128) Now the tribes of Judah and Simeon took the cities which were in the mountainous part of Canaan, as also Askelon and Ashdod, of those that lay near the sea: but Gaza and Ekron escaped them, for they, lying in a flat country, and having a great number of chariots, sorely galled those that attacked them; so these tribes, when they were grown very rich by this war, retired to their own cities, and laid aside their weapons of war.

Josephus, Antiquities 13.4.5 (1st cent. A.D.)
(103) About this time it was that king Ptolemy, who was called Philometor, led an army, part by sea and part by land, and came to Syria, to the assistance of Alexander, who was his son-in-law; (104) and accordingly all the cities received him willingly, as Alexander had commanded them to do, and conducted him as far as Ashdod; where they all made loud complaints about the temple of Dagon, which was burnt, and accused Jonathan of having laid it waste, and destroyed the country adjoining with fire, and slain a great number of them. (105) Ptolemy heard these accusations, but said nothing. Jonathan also went to meet Ptolemy as far as Joppa, and obtained from him hospitable presents, and those glorious in their kinds, with all the marks of honor; and when he had conducted him as far as the river called Eleutherus, he returned again to Jerusalem.


BYZANTINE ADMINISTRATIVE LISTS

Hierocles, Synecdemos 721:1-11 (7th cent. A.D.)
Province of Palaestina Prima, 22 cities under a consularis: Cesarea, Dora, Antipatris, Diospolis, Azotos on the sea, Azotos inland, Eleuteropolis, Aelia which is also Jerusalem, Neapolis, [Livias], Sebaste, Anthedon, Diocletianopolis, Sycamazon, Ono, Sozousa, Ioppe, Gaza, Raphia, Ascalon, Gazaris, Betylion.

Georgius Cyprius, 997-1027 (7th cent. A.D.)
Province of Palaestina Prima, Aelia-Jerusalem, Caesarea, Dora, Antipatris, Diospolis wich is also Georgiopolis, Iamnia, Nicopolis, Ono, Sozousa, Ioppe, Ascalon, Gaza, Raphia, Anthedon, Diocletianopolis, Eleutheropolis, Neapolis, Sebaste, region of Amathous, region of Jericho, region of Livias, region of Gadara, Azotos Paralos, Azotos, Sycomazon, Bitylion, Tricomias, Toxos, Canstantiniac Salton, Geraritic Salton wich is also Barsamon.


EPISCOPAL CITY

Bishops' list
Silvanus (A.D. 325, 343/4)
Heraclius (A.D. 449, 451)
Lazarus (A.D. 536)


ICONOGRAPHIC PARALLELS

Tabula Peutingeriana
(4th cent. A.D.)
Azoton

see also: 97. Azotus Paralus - (Ashdod, al-Minah)

Map Section 7 Place Discussion

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Created Saturday, December 16, 2000 at 13:33:27
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copyright - Studium Biblicum Franciscanum - Jerusalem 2000