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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

ti-be'-ri-as ([Tiberias], John 6:23): About the middle of the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, the mountains fall back from the coast, and leave a roughly crescent-shaped plain, about 2 miles in length. The modern city of Tiberias (Tabariyeh) stands at the northern extremity, where the ground begins to rise; and the Hot Baths (Hammath) at the south end. On the southern part of this plain Herod Antipas built a city (circa 26 A.D.), calling it "Tiberias" in honor of the emperor who had befriended him. In clearing the ground and digging foundations certain tombs were disturbed (Ant., XVIII ii, 3). It may have been the graveyard of old Hammath. The palace, the famous "Golden House," was built on the top of a rocky hill which rises on the West to a height of some 500 ft. The ruin is known today as Qasr bint el-Melek, "Palace of the King's Daughter" The strong walls of the city can be traced in almost their entire length on the landward side. Parts are also to be seen along the shore, with towers at intervals which guarded against attack by sea. The ruins cover a considerable area. There is nothing above ground older than Herod's city. Only excavation can show whether or not the Talmud is fight in saying that Tiberias was built on the site of Rakkath and Chinnereth (Neubauer, Geog. du Talmud, 208). The Jews were shy of settling in a city built over an old cemetery; and Herod had trouble in finding occupants for it. A strange company it was that he ultimately gathered of the "poorer people," foreigners, and others "not quite freemen"; and these were drawn by the prospect of good houses and land which he freely promised them. With its stadium, its palace "with figures of living things" and its senate, it may be properly described as a Greek city, although it also contained a proseuche, or place of prayer, for the Jews (BJ II, xxi, 6; Vita, XII, 54, etc.). This accounts for it figuring so little in the Gospels. In his anxiety to win the favor of the Jews, Herod built for them "the finest synagogue in Galilee"; but many years were to elapse before it should become a really Jewish city.

Superseding Sepphoris, Tiberias was the capital of Galilee under Agrippa I and the Roman procurators. It surrendered to Vespasian, and was given by Nero to Agrippa II, Sepphoris again becoming the capital. During the Jewish war its inhabitants were mainly Jewish, somewhat turbulent and difficult to manage. In 100 A.D., at Agrippa's death, the Romans assumed direct control. After the fall of Jerusalem, the Sanhedrin retreated to Galilee, first to Sepphoris, and then to Tiberias. Here, some time before 220 A.D., under supervision of the famous Rabbi Jehuda ha-Nasi', "Judah the Prince," or, as he is also called ha-qadhosh, "the Holy," the civil and ritual laws, decrees, customs, etc., held to be of binding obligation, handed down by tradition, but not having Scriptural authority, were codified and written down, under the title of "Mishna." Here also later was compiled the Jerusalem Talmud (Yerushalmi), as distinguished from that compiled in Babylon (Babhli). The city thus became a great center of Jewish learning. Maimonides' tomb is shown near the town, and that of Aqiba on the slope of the mountain, where it is said 24,000 of his disciples are buried with him.

In Christian times Tiberias was the seat of a bishop. It fell to the Moslems in 637. It changed hands several times as between the Crusaders and the Saracens. It was finally taken by the Moslems in 1247.

The enclosing walls of the modern city, and the castle, now swiftly going to ruin, were built by Tancred and repaired by Daher el-`Omar in 1730. There are over 5,000 inhabitants, mostly Jews, in whose hands mainly is the trade of the place. The fishing in the lake, in which some 20 boats are occupied, is carried on by Moslems and Christians. Tiberias is the chief inhabited place on the lake, to which as in ancient days it gives its name, Bachr Tabariyeh, "Sea of Tiberias" (John 6:1; John 21:1). It is the market town for a wide district. The opening of the Haifa-Damascus Railway has quickened the pulse of life considerably. A steamer and motor boat ply between the town and the station at Semach, bringing the place into easy touch with the outside world. The water of the lake is largely used for all purposes, although there are cisterns for rain water under some of the houses.

After a residence of over five years in the city, the present writer can say that it does not deserve the evil reputation which casual travelers have given it. In matters of cleanliness and health it stands comparison very well with other oriental towns. Sometimes, in east wind; it is very hot, thermometer registering over 114 Degrees Fahrenheit in the shade. The worst time is just at the beginning of the rainy season, when the impurities that have gathered in the drought of summer are washed into the sea, contaminating the water.

The United Free Church of Scotland has here a well-equipped mission to the Jews.

W. Ewing






5085. Tiberias -- Tiberias, a city of Galilee, also another name ...
... 5084, 5085. Tiberias. 5086 . Tiberias, a city of Galilee, also another
name for the Sea of Galilee. Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/5085.htm - 6k

3094. Magdalene -- Magdalene, of Magdala, a place on the coast of ...
... Magdalene, of Magdala, a place on the coast of the Sea of Galilee near Tiberias.
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine Transliteration: Magdalene Phonetic Spelling ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/3094.htm - 6k

2541. Kaisar -- Caesar, a Roman emperor
... Caesar, a surname of the gens Iulia, which became practically synonymous with the
Emperor for the time being; in the Gospels it always refers to Tiberias. ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/2541.htm - 6k

2281. thalassa -- the sea
... sah) Short Definition: the sea, lake Definition: (a) the sea, in contrast to the
land, (b) a particular sea or lake, eg the sea of Galilee (Tiberias), the Red ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/2281.htm - 6k

1179. Dekapolis -- Decapolis, a region East of the Jordan
... Definition: Decapolis, meaning a group or district of ten cities (of the Greek type)
in Palestine, mostly south-east of the Lake of Tiberias; the names and ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/1179.htm - 6k

1082. Gennesaret -- Gennesaret, a fertile plain on W. shore of the ...
... Gennesaret Phonetic Spelling: (ghen-nay-sar-et') Short Definition: Gennesaret
Definition: Gennesaret, a fertile district by the lake of Tiberias, which was in ...
//strongsnumbers.com/greek2/1082.htm - 6k


... A Chorographical Century. Chapters 71-80 Chapter 72 Tiberias. All the ... "Rakkath
is Tiberias," say the Jerusalem Gemarists. And those ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 72 tiberias.htm

Of the Situation of Tiberias.
... A Chorographical Century. Chapters 71-80 Chapter 73 Of the Situation of
Tiberias. When I read Pliny of the situation of this city ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 73 of the situation.htm

How Joppa was Taken, and Tiberias Delivered Up.
... CHAPTER 9. How Joppa Was Taken, And Tiberias Delivered Up. 1. Now Vespasian
returned to Ptolemais on the fourth day of the month ...
/.../chapter 9 how joppa was.htm

And this was the State Tiberias was Now In. ...
... Section 10. And this was the state Tiberias was now in.� 10. And this
was the state Tiberias was now in. But as for Gischala ...
/.../josephus/the life of flavius josephus/section 10 and this was.htm

However, the Governors of Tiberias Took Care to have their City ...
... Section 62. However, the governors of Tiberias took care to have their
city secured with walls� 62. However, the governors of ...
/.../josephus/the life of flavius josephus/section 62 however the governors.htm

Some History of Tiberias. The Jerusalem Talmud was Written There ...
... A Chorographical Century. Chapters 81-90 Chapter 81 Some history of Tiberias.
The Jerusalem Talmud was written there: and when. ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 81 some history of.htm

Now the Men of Tiberias, after I was Gone to Taricheae...
... Section 35. Now the men of Tiberias, after I was gone to Taricheae� 35.
Now the men of Tiberias, after I was gone to Taricheae ...
/.../josephus/the life of flavius josephus/section 35 now the men.htm

Some Other Towns Near Tiberias. Beth-Meon. Caphar Chittaia. ...
... A Chorographical Century. Chapters 71-80 Chapter 78 Some other towns near
Tiberias. Beth-Meon. Caphar Chittaia. Paltathah. Among ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 78 some other towns.htm

Nay, Indeed, Tiberias had Like to have Been Plundered by the ...
... Section 68. Nay, indeed, Tiberias had like to have been plundered by the
Galileans also upon� 68. Nay, indeed, Tiberias had like ...
/.../josephus/the life of flavius josephus/section 68 nay indeed tiberias.htm

Chammath. Ammaus. The Warm Baths of Tiberias.
... Ammaus. The warm baths of Tiberias. ... For they were very neighbouring cities; Rakkath
is Tiberias,"and Chammath, the town Ammaus, in Josephus. ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 74 chammath ammaus the.htm

Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary

good vision; the navel

Smith's Bible Dictionary

a city in the time of Christ, on the Sea of Galilee; first mentioned in the New Testament, (John 6:1,23; 21:1) and then by Josephus, who states that it was built by Herod Antipas, and was named by him in honor of the emperor Tiberius. Tiberias was the capital of Galilee from the time of its origin until the reign of Herod Agrippa II., who changed the seat of power back again to Sepphoris, where it had been before the founding of the new city. Many of the inhabitants were Greeks and Romans, and foreign customs prevailed there: to such an extent as to give offence to the stricter Jews. It is remarkable that the Gospels give us no information that the Saviour who spent so much of his public life in Galilee, ever visited Tiberias. The place is only mentioned in the New Testament in (John 6:23) History . --Tiberias has an interesting history apart from its strictly biblical associations. It bore a conspicuous part in the wars between the Jews and the Romans. The Sanhedrin, subsequent to the fall of Jerusalem, after a temporary sojourn at Jamnia and Sepphoris, became fixed there about the middle of the second century. Celebrated schools of Jewish learning flourished there through a succession of several centuries. The Mishna was compiled at this place by the great Rabbi Judah Hakkodesh, A.D. 190. The city has been possessed successively by Romans, Persians Arabs and Turks. It contains now, under the Turkish rule, a mixed population of Mohammedans, Jews and Christian, variously estimated at from two to four thousand. Present city . --The ancient name has survived in that of the modern Tubarieh , which occupies the original site. Near Tubarieh , about a mile farther south along the shore, are the celebrated warm baths, which the Roman naturalists reckoned among the greatest known curiosities of the world. Tiberias is described by Dr. Thomson as "a filthy place, fearfully hot in summer." It was nearly destroyed in 1837 by an earthquake, by which 800 persons lost their lives.

ATS Bible Dictionary

A city of Galilee, founded by Herod Antipas, and namely by him in honor of the emperor Tiberius. A more ancient and greater city, perhaps Chinneroth, seems previously to have flourished and gone to ruin near the same site, on the south. Tiberias was situated on the western shore of the lake of Gennesareth, about two hours' ride from the place where the Jordan issues from the lake. In the vicinity of the city were hot springs, which were much celebrated. The lake is also sometimes, called from the city, the sea of Tiberias, John 6:1,23 21:1. See SEA 4.

After the destruction of Jerusalem, Tiberias was celebrated as the seat of a flourishing school of Jewish learning. The crusaders held it for a time, and erected a church, in which the Arabs have since housed their cattle. Modern Tubariyeh lies on a narrow undulating plain between the high table-land and the sea. It was half destroyed by an earthquake in 1837, and has a population of only twenty-five hundred souls, nearly one-third of whom are Jews. The walls are little more than heaps of ruins, the castle is much shattered, and the place has an aspect of extreme wretchedness and filth. As the Arabs say, "The king of the fleas holds his court at Tubariyeh." South of the town are numerous remains of the ancient city or cities extending for a mile and a half, nearly to the hot springs. The waters of these springs are nauseous and salt, and too hot for immediate use, 136 degrees to 144 degrees; but the baths are much resorted to for the cure of rheumatic diseases, etc.

Easton's Bible Dictionary
A city, the modern Tubarich, on the western shore of the Sea of Tiberias. It is said to have been founded by Herod Antipas (A.D. 16), on the site of the ruins of an older city called Rakkath, and to have been thus named by him after the Emperor Tiberius. It is mentioned only three times in the history of our Lord (John 6:1, 23; 21:1).

In 1837 about one-half of the inhabitants perished by an earthquake. The population of the city is now about six thousand, nearly the one-half being Jews. "We do not read that our Lord ever entered this city. The reason of this is probably to be found in the fact that it was practically a heathen city, though standing upon Jewish soil. Herod, its founder, had brought together the arts of Greece, the idolatry of Rome, and the gross lewdness of Asia. There were in it a theatre for the performance of comedies, a forum, a stadium, a palace roofed with gold in imitation of those in Italy, statues of the Roman gods, and busts of the deified emperors. He who was not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel might well hold himself aloof from such scenes as these" (Manning's Those Holy Fields).

After the fall of Jerusalem (A.D. 70), Tiberias became one of the chief residences of the Jews in Palestine. It was for more than three hundred years their metropolis. From about A.D. 150 the Sanhedrin settled here, and established rabbinical schools, which rose to great celebrity. Here the Jerusalem (or Palestinian) Talmud was compiled about the beginning of the fifth century. To this same rabbinical school also we are indebted for the Masora, a "body of traditions which transmitted the readings of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament, and preserved, by means of the vowel-system, the pronunciation of the Hebrew." In its original form, and in all manuscripts, the Hebrew is written without vowels; hence, when it ceased to be a spoken language, the importance of knowing what vowels to insert between the consonants. This is supplied by the Masora, and hence these vowels are called the "Masoretic vowel-points."

Tiberias, Sea of

Called also the Sea of Galilee (q.v.) and of Gennesaret. In the Old Testament it is called the Sea of Chinnereth or Chinneroth. John (21:1) is the only evangelist who so designates this lake. His doing so incidentally confirms the opinion that he wrote after the other evangelists, and at a period subsequent to the taking of Jerusalem (A.D. 70). Tiberias had by this time become an important city, having been spared by the Romans, and made the capital of the province when Jerusalem was destroyed. It thus naturally gave its name to the lake.

Tiberias (3 Occurrences)
... Easton's Bible Dictionary A city, the modern Tubarich, on the western shore
of the Sea of Tiberias. It ... points.". Tiberias, Sea of. ...
/t/tiberias.htm - 15k

Rakkath (1 Occurrence)
... The old name of Tiberias, according to the Rabbins. Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia.
RAKKATH. ... Hammath is identified with the hot baths to the South of Tiberias. ...
/r/rakkath.htm - 7k

Cana (4 Occurrences)
... it with Kefr Kenna, which lies on the direct road to the Sea of Galilee, about 5
miles north-east of Nazareth, and 12 in a direct course from Tiberias. ...
/c/cana.htm - 11k

Chinnereth (4 Occurrences)
... is also used in the plural form, Chinneroth, the name of a fenced city which stood
near the shore of the lake of Galilee, a little to the south of Tiberias. ...
/c/chinnereth.htm - 9k

Hammath (2 Occurrences)
... with the warm baths (the heat of the water ranging from 136 degrees to 144 degrees)
still found on the shore a little to the south of Tiberias under the name ...
/h/hammath.htm - 8k

Quit (12 Occurrences)
... ar'-a-ba). See DEAD SEA. SEA OF TIBERIAS. ti-be'-ri-as. See GALILEE, SEA OF. ... SODOMITISH;
SEA. sod'-om-it-ish. See DEAD SEA. TIBERIAS, SEA OF. See GALILEE, SEA OF ...
/q/quit.htm - 13k

Ziddim (1 Occurrence)
... Sides, a town of Naphtali (Joshua 19:35), has been identified with Kefr-Hattin,
the "village of the Hittites," about 5 miles west of Tiberias. Int. ...
/z/ziddim.htm - 7k

Nathanael (6 Occurrences)
... He was one of those to whom the Lord showed himself alive after his resurrection,
at the Sea of Tiberias. Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. NATHANAEL (1). ...
/n/nathanael.htm - 13k

Nekeb (1 Occurrence)
... It has with probability, been identified with Seiyadeh, nearly 2 miles east of
Bessum, a ruin half way between Tiberias and Mount Tabor. Int. ...
/n/nekeb.htm - 7k

Lassharon (1 Occurrence)
... Tabor and the Lake of Tiberias called Sarona. This is probably represented by the
ancient site Sarona, on the plateau 6 1/2 miles Southwest 2 of Tiberias. ...
/l/lassharon.htm - 7k

Bible Concordance
Tiberias (3 Occurrences)

John 6:1 After these things, Jesus went away to the other side of the sea of Galilee, which is also called the Sea of Tiberias.

John 6:23 However boats from Tiberias came near to the place where they ate the bread after the Lord had given thanks.

John 21:1 After these things, Jesus revealed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias. He revealed himself this way.



Tiberias: A City Next to Lake Galilee

Tiberias: The Sea of, a Name Given to Lake Galilee

Related Terms

Rakkath (1 Occurrence)

Cana (4 Occurrences)

Chinnereth (4 Occurrences)

Hammath (2 Occurrences)

Quit (12 Occurrences)

Ziddim (1 Occurrence)

Nathanael (6 Occurrences)

Nekeb (1 Occurrence)

Lassharon (1 Occurrence)

Lasharon (1 Occurrence)

Gathhepher (1 Occurrence)

Gath-hepher (2 Occurrences)

Tiber'i-as (2 Occurrences)

Tibe'ri-as (1 Occurrence)

Doctor (5 Occurrences)

Magdala (13 Occurrences)

Sharon (9 Occurrences)

Hammoth-dor (1 Occurrence)

Hammothdor (1 Occurrence)

Bethsaida (7 Occurrences)

Galilee (73 Occurrences)

Lake (45 Occurrences)


Syria (73 Occurrences)

Zer (1 Occurrence)

Zaanaim (1 Occurrence)

Zealot (4 Occurrences)

Kartan (1 Occurrence)

Naphtali (51 Occurrences)

Neighbourhood (9 Occurrences)

Landed (10 Occurrences)

Geshur (11 Occurrences)

Iscariot (11 Occurrences)

Follows (65 Occurrences)

Fishing (4 Occurrences)

Tiaras (1 Occurrence)

Thaddaeus (2 Occurrences)

Thomas (12 Occurrences)

Revealed (129 Occurrences)

Emmaus (1 Occurrence)

Eaten (211 Occurrences)

Desert (322 Occurrences)

Den (19 Occurrences)

Madon (2 Occurrences)

Manifested (48 Occurrences)


Mary (50 Occurrences)

Bartholomew (4 Occurrences)

Circumstances (19 Occurrences)

Canaanite (74 Occurrences)

Chinneroth (3 Occurrences)

Cananaean (2 Occurrences)


Adami-nekeb (1 Occurrence)

Aphik (1 Occurrence)

Adaminekeb (1 Occurrence)

Adamah (2 Occurrences)

Shewed (105 Occurrences)

Showed (164 Occurrences)

Snow (25 Occurrences)

Across (172 Occurrences)

Pharisees (86 Occurrences)


Sanhedrin (19 Occurrences)

Appeared (137 Occurrences)

Bathing (9 Occurrences)

Inches (1 Occurrence)

Shore (45 Occurrences)

Nazareth (29 Occurrences)

Ate (138 Occurrences)


Thanks (151 Occurrences)

Manifest (74 Occurrences)

Tiberius (1 Occurrence)

Judas (42 Occurrences)

Jordan (188 Occurrences)



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