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February 23    Scripture

Sites - Israel: Mamshit
Ancient Israel

Mamshit in Wikipedia Mamshit (Hebrew: ממשית‎) is the Nabataean city of Memphis. In the Nabataean period, Mamshit was an important station on Incense Road, running from the Idumean Mountains, through the Arabah and Ma'ale Akrabim, and on to Beer-Sheva or to Hebron and Jerusalem. The city covers 10 acres (40,000 m2) and is the smallest but best restored city in the Negev Desert. The once-luxurious houses feature unusual architecture not found in any other Nabataean city. The reconstructed city gives the visitor a sense of how Mamshit once looked. Entire streets have survived intact, and there are also large groups of Nabataean buildings with open rooms, courtyards, and terraces. The stones are carefully chiseled and the arches that support the ceiling are remarkably well constructed. History -- Mamshit was built in 1st century BC as trade post on the way from Petra to Gaza. with time the city was developed and based also on agriculture. When trade in Mamshit waned with the Roman occupation, the occupants found another way to make a living: raising horses. The residents of Mamshit bred the renowned Arabian horse, which brought great wealth to their city. During the Byzantine period Mamshit also received support from the authorities for being a frontier city. When this funding dried up, at the time of Justinian, the city died a natural death. Before the founding of the State of Israel, Prime Minister to-be David Ben-Gurion saw Mamshit as the capital of the future country, which dovetailed with his dream of settling the Negev Desert. Two churches were discovered in Mamshit. The western Nile Church has a mosaic floor with colorful geometric patterns, birds, a fruit basket, and five dedications in Greek (the mosaic is not open to the public). The eastern church has a lectern on small marble pillars, the remnants of which can be seen at the site. The biggest hoard ever found in Israel was uncovered in Mamshit - 10500 silver coins, 158 pounds of plumbum tonque with foundry signs and a papyrus cluster with ancient Greek texts. Mamshit was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO on June 2005.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mamshit


Mamshit Travel Info Mamshit is a jewel in the crown of Christianitys earliest days, its desert home on an ancient trading route is a reminder of how Christianity took its message to the world. Mamshit, in the central Negev, was first settled by the nomadic Nabateans, a stop on the 1,400-mile long Incense Route over which they brought frankincense and myrrh out of Arabia to the Mediterranean. In the fourth century, the Nabateans converted to Christianity, as the crosses some residents carved into the lintels of their homes still attest. Two large and impressive churches, among the most ancient in the world, adorned with mosaic floors, also celebrate the firs presence of Christians here. (Israel Minister of Tourism)
http://www.goisrael.com/


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