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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

('elon tabhor): Thus the Revised Version (British and American) in 1 Samuel 10:3 for the King James Version "plain of Tabor" (the Revised Version margin "terebinth"). Tabor was famous for its groves of oak, but what "oak" is meant here is not known. Ewald thinks that "Tabor" is a different pronunciation for "Deborah," and connects with Genesis 35:8; but this is not likely.

See OAK, 3.


ta'-ber, tar'-bor (tabhor; Codex Vaticanus Thachcheia; Codex Alexandrinus Thabor): One of the towns in the territory of Zebulun, given to the Merarite Levites (1 Chronicles 6:77). The parallel list in Joshua 21:24 contains no name like this. There is no indication of its position. Some have thought that it may correspond to Daberath in the territory of Issachar (21:28), now represented by Deburiyeh on the western slope of Mt. Tabor; others that it may be the mountain itself; and yet others that it may be a city on the mountain, which probably was occupied from very early times. There is a Tabor mentioned as on the border of Issachar (Joshua 19:22); but that is almost certainly the mountain. It has been suggested that Tabor in 1 Chronicles 6:17 may be a contraction of Chisloth-tabor (Joshua 19:12), the modern Iksal, 3 miles West of the mountain. No certainty is possible.

W. Ewing


(tabhor, har tabhor; oros Thabor, to Itaburion): This mountain seems to be named as on the border of Issachar (Joshua 19:22). It is possibly identical with the mountain to which Zebulun and Issachar were to call the peoples (Deuteronomy 33:19). Standing on the boundary between the tribes, they would claim equal rights in the sanctuary on the top. The passage seems to indicate that it was a place of pilgrimage. The worshippers, bringing with them the "abundance of the sea" and the "treasures of the sand," would be a source of profit to the local authorities. The mountain can be no other than Jebel et-Tur, an isolated and shapely height, rising at the northeast corner of the Plain of Esdraelon, about 5 miles West of Nazareth. The mountain has retained its sacred character, and is still a place of pilgrimage, only the rites being changed. The present writer has mingled with great interest among the crowds that assemble there from all parts at the Feast of the Transfiguration.

It was on the summit and slopes of this mountain that Deborah and Barak gathered their forces; and hence, they swept down to battle with Sisera in the great plain (Judges 4:6, 12, 14). Here probably the brothers of Gideon were murdered by Zeba and Zalmunna (Judges 8:18). Moore ("Judges," ICC, at the place) thinks the scene of the slaughter must have been much farther South. He does not see what the brothers of Gideon were doing so far North of their home in Abiezer. There is, however, no reason for placing Ophrah so far to the South as he does; and in any case the men were probably captured and taken to Tabor as prisoners. Josephus (Ant., VII, ii, 3) says it was in one of Solomon's administrative districts (compare 1 Kings 4:17). Such a prominent and commanding position must always have invited fortification. In the time of Antiochus the Great, 218 B.C., we find a fortress here, which that king took by stratagem, Atabyrion by name (Polyb. v. 70, 6). It was recovered by the Jews, and was held by them under Janneus, 105-70 B.C. (Ant., XIII, xv, 4). The place fell to the Romans at the conquest under Pompey; and not far from the mountain Alexander, son of Aristobulus II, suffered defeat at the hands of Gabinius, proconsul of Syria, 53 B.C. (Ant., XIV, iv, 3; BJ, I, viii, 7). Josephus, who commanded in Galilee at the outbreak of the Jewish war, recognized the importance of the position, and built a wall round the summit. After the disaster to Jewish arms at Jotapata, where Josephus himself was taken prisoner, many fugitives took refuge here. Placidus the Roman general did not attempt an assault upon the fortress. Its defenders were by a feint drawn into the plain, where they were defeated, and the city surrendered.

A tradition which can be traced to the 4th century A.D. places the scene of the Transfiguration on this mountain. Allusion has been made above to the sacred character of the place. To this, and to the striking appearance of the mountain, the rise of the tradition may have been due. Passing centuries have seen a succession of churches and monasteries erected on the mountain. The scene of the Transfiguration was laid at the southeastern end of the summit, and here a church was built, probably by Tancred. Hard by was also shown the place where Melchizedek met Abraham returning from the pursuit of Chedorlaomer. The mountain shared to the full the vicissitudes of the country's stormy history. In 1113 A.D. the Arabs from Damascus plundered the monasteries and murdered the monks. An unsuccessful attack was made by Saladin in 1183, but 4 years later, after the rout of the Crusaders at Hattin, he devastated the place. Twenty-five years after that it was fortified by el-Melek el-`Adel, brother of Saladin, and the Crusaders failed in an attempt to take it in 1217. In 1218, however, the Saracens threw down the defenses. Sultan Bibars in 1263 ordered the destruction of the Church of the Transfiguration, and for a time the mountain was deserted. The Feast of the Transfiguration, however, continued to be celebrated by the monks from Nazareth. During the last quarter of the 19th century much building was done by the Latin and Greek churches, who have now large and substantial monasteries and churches. They have also excavated the ruins of many of the old ecclesiastical buildings. The remains now to be seen present features of every period, from Jewish times to our own.

Mt. Tabor rises to a height of 1,843 ft. above the sea, and forms the most striking feature of the landscape. Seen from the South it presents the shape of a hemisphere; from the West, that of a sugar loaf. Its rounded top and steep sides are covered with thick brushwood. It is about half a century since the oak forest disappeared; but solitary survivors here and there show what the trees must have been. A low neck connects the mountain with the uplands to the North. It is cut off from Jebel ed-Duchy on the South by a fertile vale, which breaks down into Wady el-Bireh, and thence to the Jordan. A zigzag path on the Northwest leads to the top, whence most interesting and comprehensive views are obtained. Southward, over Little Hermon, with Endor and Nain on its side, and Shunem at its western base, we catch a glimpse of Mt. Gilboa. Away across the plain the eye runs along the hills on the northern boundary of Samaria, past Taanach and Megiddo to Carmel by the sea, and the oak forest that runs northward from the gorge of the Kishon. A little to the North of West, 5 miles of broken upland, we can see the higher houses of Nazareth gleaming white in the sun. Eastward lies the hollow of the Jordan, and beyond it the wall of Gilead and the steep cliffs East of the Sea of Galilee, broken by glens and watercourses, and especially by the great chasm of the Yarmuk. The mountains of Zebulun and Naphtali seem to culminate in the shining mass of Great Hermon, rising far in the northern sky. Standing here one realizes how aptly the two mountains may be associated in the Psalmist's thought, although Hermon be mighty and Tabor humble (Psalm 89:12). Tabor is referred to by Jeremiah (46:18), and Hosea alludes to some ensnaring worship practiced on the mountain (5:1).

The present writer spent some weeks on Mt. Tabor, and as the result of careful observation and consideration concluded that the scene of the Transfiguration cannot be laid here. The place would appear to have been occupied at that time; and the remoteness and quiet which Jesus evidently sought could hardly have been found here.


W. Ewing


(PLAIN OF TABOR in the King James Version) (elon tabhor; he drus Thabor): A place mentioned only in Samuel's directions to Saul after his anointing (1 Samuel 10:3). It lay between the city where the two met and Gibeah whither Saul was returning. Ewald and Thenius thought it might be identical with the palm tree of Deborah, but there is nothing to support this conjecture. Others have thought we might read "oak of Deborah," as signifying the place where Rachel's nurse was buried (Genesis 35:8). The truth is that nothing whatever is now known of the site.

W. Ewing

Strong's Hebrew
243. Aznoth Tabor -- a place in Naphtali
Aznoth Tabor. 242, 243. Aznoth Tabor. 244 . a place in Naphtali.
Transliteration: Aznoth Tabor Phonetic Spelling: (az-noth' taw ...
/hebrew/243.htm - 6k

3696. Kisloth Tabor -- a place in Issachar
Kisloth Tabor. 3695, 3696. Kisloth Tabor. 3697 . a place in Issachar.
Transliteration: Kisloth Tabor Phonetic Spelling: (kis-loth ...
/hebrew/3696.htm - 6k

8396. Tabor -- a mountain Southwest of the Sea of Galilee, also ...
... 8395, 8396. Tabor. 8397 . a mountain Southwest ... in Isr. Transliteration: Tabor
Phonetic Spelling: (taw-bore') Short Definition: Tabor. Word ...
/hebrew/8396.htm - 6k

8397. tebel -- confusion
... from balal Definition confusion NASB Word Usage incest (1), perversion (1). Tabor.
Apparently from balal; mixture, ie Unnatural bestiality -- confusion. ...
/hebrew/8397.htm - 6k


Is this He that was Transfigured Upon Mount Tabor? Pale
... THE FIRST CENTURY 89 Is this He that was transfigured upon Mount Tabor?
Pale. Is this He that was transfigured upon Mount Tabor? ...
/.../ of meditations/89 is this he that.htm

The Transfiguration
... Mount Tabor, near Nazareth, on the borders of the Plain of Esdraelon, has
long been regarded as the favored spot. But, in our day ...
/.../newton/the life of jesus christ for the young/the transfiguration.htm

Third Withdrawal from Herod's Territory.
... Tabor as the site of the transfiguration, but this is unquestionably a mistake.
Mt. ... Tabor (Joshua 19:12; Jos. BJ i.8, 7; Vit.37). Moreover, Mt. ...
/.../mcgarvey/the four-fold gospel/lxx third withdrawal from herods 4.htm

... For magnified is He!'. Upon the Mount of Tabor. The promise was made good; ... In
thunder-cloud and flame: On Tabor, with the glory. Of sunniest light for vest,. ...
// of the eastern church/transfiguration.htm

Women who Saved a Nation
... and called Barak, the son of Abinoam, from Kadesh Naphtali and said to him, "Does
not Jehovah the God of Israel command you: 'Go, march to Mount Tabor and take ...
/.../ childrens bible/women who saved a nation.htm

The Annunciation of Jesus the Messiah, and the Birth of his ...
... But if you turned eastwards, the eye would soon be arrested by the wooded height
of Tabor, yet not before attention had been riveted by the long, narrow string ...
/.../the life and times of jesus the messiah/chapter iv the annunciation of.htm

Of Suffering which must be Accepted as from God --Its Fruits.
... Be content with all the suffering that God may lay upon you. If you will love Him
purely, you will be as willing to follow Him to Calvary as to Tabor. ...
/.../chapter vi of suffering which.htm

The Transfiguration of Christ
... Jerome, when pilgrims first began the attempt to identify sites hallowed by sacred
events, Mount Tabor has, until recent years, been regarded as the Mount of ...
/.../newton/the life of jesus christ for the young/the transfiguration of christ.htm

The Hussites (Ad 1418-1431)
... points. In the summer of 1419, the first public communion was celebrated
at a place where the town of Tabor was afterwards built. ...
/.../chapter xxv the hussites ad.htm

The Siege and Taking of Gamala.
... And the Romans received all the fortresses and the cities, excepting Gischala and
those that had seized upon Mount Tabor; Gamala also, which is a city ever ...
/.../chapter 1 the siege and.htm

Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary

choice; purity; bruising

Smith's Bible Dictionary

(a mound), or Mount Tabor, one of the most interesting and remarkable of the single mountains in Palestine. It rises abruptly from the northeastern arm of the plain of Esdraelon, and stands entirely insulated, except on the west where a narrow ridge connects it with the hills of Nazareth. It presents to the eye, as seen from a distance, a beautiful appearance, being symmetrical in its proportions and rounded off like a hemisphere or the segment of a circle, yet varying somewhat as viewed from different directions. The body of the mountain consists of the peculiar limestone of the country. It is now called Jebel-et-Tur . It lies about six or eight miles almost due east from Nazareth. The ascent is usually made on the west side, near the little village of Deburieh --probably the ancient Daberath, (Joshua 19:12) --though it can be made with entire ease in other places. It requires three quarters of an hour or an hour to reach the to the top. The top of Tabor consists of an irregular platform, embracing a circuit of half an hour's walk, and commanding wide views of the subjacent plain from end to end. Tabor does not occur in the New Testament, but makes a prominent figure in the Old. The book of Joshua (Joshua 19:22) mentions it as the boundary between Issachar and Zebulun, See ver. 12. Barak, at the command of Deborah, assembled his forces on Tabor, and descended thence, with "ten thousand men after him," into the plain, and conquered Sisera on the banks of the Kishon. (Judges 4:6-15) The brothers of Gideon each of whom "resembled the children of a king," were murdered here by Zebah and Zalmunna. (Judges 8:18,19) There are at present the ruins of a fortress round all the summit of Tabor. The Latin Christians have now an altar here at which their priests from Nazareth perform an annual mass. The Greeks also have a chapel, where, on certain festivals they assemble for the celebration of religious rites. The idea that our Saviour was transfigured on Tabor prevailed extensively among the early Christians, and still reappears often in popular religious works. It is impossible, however, to acquiesce in the correctness of this opinion. It can be proved from the Old Testament and from later history that a fortress or town existed on Tabor from very early times down to B.C. 53 or 50; and as Josephus says that he strengthened the fortifications there about A.D. 60, it is morally certain that Tabor must have been inhabited during the intervening Period that is in the days of Christ. Tabor, therefore, could not have been the Mount of Transfiguration [see HERMON]; for when it is said that Jesus took his disciples "up into a high mountain apart, and was transfigured before them (Matthew 17:1,2) we must understand that he brought them to the summit of the mountain, where they were alone by themselves.

ATS Bible Dictionary

An isolated mountain of Galilee, on the northeastern side of the plain of Esdraelon, an arm of which extends beyond the mountain in the same direction. It is of limestone formation, conical in form, and well-wooded, especially on the north side, with fine oaks and other trees and odoriferous plants. It rises 1,350 feet above the plain at its base, which is 400 feet above the Mediterranean, and by a winding path on the north-west side one may ride to its summit in an hour. There is a small oblong plain on the summit, surrounded by a larger but less regular tract, perhaps a mile inn circumference. The prospect from Mount Tabor is extensive and beautiful. Dr. Robinson and many others speak of it as one of the finest in Paletine; and Lord Nugent declared it the most splendid he could recollect having ever seen from any natural height. See Jeremiah 46:18. Its general features are the same as those of the view from the heights of Nazareth, five miles to the west. See NAZARETH. Glimpses of the Mediterranean appear over the high grounds, which intervene. In the plain at the southern base of the mountain are the sources of the brook Kishon, and the villages Endor and Nain, famous in Bible history. Besides the fertile expanse of Esdraelon, and mounts Carmel, Gilboa, etc., on its borders, the view embraces a portion of the sea of Galilee in the northeast; and towards the north the mountains of Galilee, with the town of Safed crowning the highest of them all, recalling the proverb which it is said to have first suggested, "A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid." Still farther to the north and east, the snowcrowned head of Hermon overlooks the fifty miles which intervene, Psalm 80:12.

On the summit of Tabor a fortified town anciently stood, probably of the same name, 1 Chronicles 6:77. This was in existence, and was garrisoned by the Romans in the time of Christ, which conflicts with the tradition that makes Tabor the scene of the transfiguration. Ruins of ancient walls enclose the area of the summit; and at various points there are remains of fortifications and dwellings, some of which are of the age of the crusaders, and others of more ancient date. Tabor lay on the borders of Issachar and Zebulun, Joshua 19:12,22. The host of Barak encamped upon it, before the battle with Sisera, Jud 4:6,12,14. At a later day it appears to have been desecrated by idolatry, Hosea 5:1.

Easton's Bible Dictionary
A height.

(1.) Now Jebel et-Tur, a cone-like prominent mountain, 11 miles west of the Sea of Galilee. It is about 1,843 feet high. The view from the summit of it is said to be singularly extensive and grand. This is alluded to in Psalm 89:12; Jeremiah 46:18. It was here that Barak encamped before the battle with Sisera (q.v.) Judges 4:6-14. There is an old tradition, which, however, is unfounded, that it was the scene of the transfiguration of our Lord. (see HERMON.) "The prominence and isolation of Tabor, standing, as it does, on the border-land between the northern and southern tribes, between the mountains and the central plain, made it a place of note in all ages, and evidently led the psalmist to associate it with Hermon, the one emblematic of the south, the other of the north." There are some who still hold that this was the scene of the transfiguration (q.v.).

(2.) A town of Zebulum (1 Chronicles 6:77).

(3.) The "plain of Tabor" (1 Samuel 10:3) should be, as in the Revised Version, "the oak of Tabor." This was probably the Allon-bachuth of Genesis 35:8.

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (n.) A small drum used as an accompaniment to a pipe or fife, both being played by the same person.

2. (v. i.) To play on a tabor, or little drum.

3. (v. i.) To strike lightly and frequently.

4. (v. t.) To make (a sound) with a tabor.

Tabor (12 Occurrences)
... (see HERMON.) "The prominence and isolation of Tabor, standing, as it does ... 2. (vi)
To play on a tabor, or little drum. 3. (vi) To strike lightly and frequently. ...
/t/tabor.htm - 21k

Aznoth-tabor (1 Occurrence)
Aznoth-tabor. Aznothtabor, Aznoth-tabor. Az'noth-tabor . Int. Standard
Bible Encyclopedia AZNOTH-TABOR. az'noth-ta'-bor ...
/a/aznoth-tabor.htm - 7k

Chisloth-tabor (1 Occurrence)
Chisloth-tabor. Chislothtabor, Chisloth-tabor. Chis'loth-ta'Bor . Int. Standard
Bible Encyclopedia CHISLOTH-TABOR. kis-loth-ta'-bor, kiz'-loth. ...
/c/chisloth-tabor.htm - 7k

Az'noth-tabor (1 Occurrence)
Az'noth-tabor. Aznoth-tabor, Az'noth-tabor. Azor . Multi-Version
Concordance Az'noth-tabor (1 Occurrence). Joshua 19 ...
/a/az'noth-tabor.htm - 6k

... From the foot of Mount Tabor it branches out into three valleys, that on the north
passing between Tabor and Little Hermon (Judges 4:14); that on the south ...
/e/esdraelon.htm - 15k

Chesulloth (1 Occurrence)
... It has been identified with Chisloth-tabor, 2 1/2 miles to the west of Mount Tabor,
and north of Jezreel; now Iksal. Int. ...Tabor. Multi-Version Concordance ...
/c/chesulloth.htm - 7k

Aznothtabor (1 Occurrence)
... AZNOTH-TABOR. az'noth-ta'-bor ('aznoth tabhor, "peaks of Tabor"): A place in western
Naphtali, evidently in the vicinity of Mt. Tabor (Joshua 19:34). ...
/a/aznothtabor.htm - 7k

Barak (14 Occurrences)
...Tabor. ... (WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV). Judges 4:12 They told Sisera
that Barak the son of Abinoam was gone up to Mount Tabor. ...
/b/barak.htm - 14k

... The place of the transfiguration was probably Mount Hermon (qv), and not Mount Tabor,
as is commonly supposed. Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. TRANSFIGURATION ...
/t/transfiguration.htm - 17k

Daberath (3 Occurrences)
... near the border of Zebulum. It is the modern small village of Deburich,
at the base of Mount Tabor. Tradition has incorrectly made ...
/d/daberath.htm - 8k

Bible Concordance
Tabor (12 Occurrences)

Joshua 19:12 It turned from Sarid eastward toward the sunrise to the border of Chisloth Tabor. It went out to Daberath, and went up to Japhia.

Joshua 19:22 The border reached to Tabor, Shahazumah, and Beth Shemesh. Their border ended at the Jordan: sixteen cities with their villages.

Joshua 19:34 The border turned westward to Aznoth Tabor, and went out from there to Hukkok. It reached to Zebulun on the south, and reached to Asher on the west, and to Judah at the Jordan toward the sunrise.

Judges 4:6 She sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedesh Naphtali, and said to him, "Hasn't Yahweh, the God of Israel, commanded,'Go and draw to Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun?

Judges 4:12 They told Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam was gone up to Mount Tabor.

Judges 4:14 Deborah said to Barak, "Go; for this is the day in which Yahweh has delivered Sisera into your hand. Hasn't Yahweh gone out before you?" So Barak went down from Mount Tabor, and ten thousand men after him.

Judges 8:18 Then said he to Zebah and Zalmunna, "What kind of men were they whom you killed at Tabor?" They answered, "They were like you. Each one resembled the children of a king."

1 Samuel 10:3 "Then you shall go on forward from there, and you shall come to the oak of Tabor; and three men shall meet you there going up to God to Bethel, one carrying three young goats, and another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a bottle of wine:

1 Chronicles 6:77 To the rest of the Levites, the sons of Merari, were given, out of the tribe of Zebulun, Rimmono with its suburbs, Tabor with its suburbs;

Psalms 89:12 The north and the south, you have created them. Tabor and Hermon rejoice in your name.

Jeremiah 46:18 As I live, says the King, whose name is Yahweh of Armies, surely like Tabor among the mountains, and like Carmel by the sea, so shall he come.

Hosea 5:1 "Listen to this, you priests! Listen, house of Israel, and give ear, house of the king! For the judgment is against you; for you have been a snare at Mizpah, and a net spread on Tabor.



Tabor: A Levitical City in Zebulun

Tabor: A Mountain on the Border of the Tribe of Issachar

Tabor: A Mountain on the Border of the Tribe of Issachar: The Place for Assembling Barak's Army

Tabor: A Plain

Related Terms

Aznoth-tabor (1 Occurrence)

Chisloth-tabor (1 Occurrence)

Az'noth-tabor (1 Occurrence)


Chesulloth (1 Occurrence)

Aznothtabor (1 Occurrence)

Barak (14 Occurrences)


Daberath (3 Occurrences)

Issachar (40 Occurrences)

Nazareth (29 Occurrences)

Oak (22 Occurrences)

Sisera (18 Occurrences)

Zebulun (46 Occurrences)

Bethshemesh (19 Occurrences)

Beth-shemesh (19 Occurrences)

Kishon (6 Occurrences)

Nain (1 Occurrence)

Nekeb (1 Occurrence)

Japhia (5 Occurrences)

Chislothtabor (1 Occurrence)

Chis'loth-ta'Bor (1 Occurrence)

Abinoam (4 Occurrences)

Sarid (2 Occurrences)

Sun-rising (14 Occurrences)

Sis'era (19 Occurrences)

Sunrise (25 Occurrences)

Shahazumah (1 Occurrence)

Sharon (9 Occurrences)

Terebinth (15 Occurrences)

Kedesh (12 Occurrences)

Limit (115 Occurrences)

Zeb'ulun (41 Occurrences)

Boundary (83 Occurrences)



Deborah (10 Occurrences)

Hermon (16 Occurrences)

Proceeded (72 Occurrences)

Gideon (45 Occurrences)

Touched (96 Occurrences)

Hukkok (1 Occurrence)

Galilee (73 Occurrences)

Mount (311 Occurrences)

Plain (113 Occurrences)

Naphtali (51 Occurrences)

Reached (152 Occurrences)

Malchiel (3 Occurrences)


Hul (2 Occurrences)

Har-magedon (1 Occurrence)

Zalmun'na (8 Occurrences)

Zaanannim (2 Occurrences)

Zaanaim (1 Occurrence)

Kisloth (1 Occurrence)

Kids (12 Occurrences)

Kartah (2 Occurrences)

Unwalled (39 Occurrences)

Oak-tree (11 Occurrences)

Outgoings (21 Occurrences)

Joyously (8 Occurrences)

Jokneam (5 Occurrences)

Jug (11 Occurrences)

Japhi'a (5 Occurrences)

Lassharon (1 Occurrence)

Lasharon (1 Occurrence)

Looms (2 Occurrences)

Gibeath (2 Occurrences)

Westwards (6 Occurrences)

Flask (15 Occurrences)

Timbrel (7 Occurrences)

Table-vessels (2 Occurrences)

Tabret (3 Occurrences)

Rimmono (1 Occurrence)

Resembled (18 Occurrences)

Resembling (19 Occurrences)

Reacheth (23 Occurrences)

Rim'mono (1 Occurrence)

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