Hebron


Hebron. Vue generale. – Hebron gen View. – Hebron. Vista General. – Ebron veduta generale.
[Hebron: General View]
c.1910

Google Street View (location).

Hebron (Al-Khalil in Arabic) is located 32 kilometers south of Jerusalem and is built on several hills and wadis, most of which run north-to-south. The Hebrew word Hebron is explained as being derived from the Hebrew word for friend (haver), a description for the Patriarch Abraham. The Arabic Al- Khalil, literally “the friend,” has a nearly identical derivation and also refers to Abraham (Ibrahim), whom Muslims similarly describe as the friend of God. Hebron is one of the oldest continually occupied cities in the world and has been a major focus of religious worship for over two millennia.
Jewish Virtual Library

Late in the 19th century the production of Hebron glass declined due to competition from imported European glass-ware, however, the products of Hebron continued to be sold, particularly among the poorer populace and travelling Jewish traders from the city. At the World Fair of 1873 in Vienna, Hebron was represented with glass ornaments. A report from the French consul in 1886 suggests that glass-making remained an important source of income for Hebron, with four factories earning 60,000 francs yearly. While the economy of other cities in Palestine was based on solely on trade, Hebron was the only city in Palestine that combined agriculture, livestock herding and trade, including the manufacture of glassware and processing of hides. This was because the most fertile lands were situated within the city limits. The city, nevertheless, was considered unproductive and had a reputation “being an asylum for the poor and the spiritual.” Differing in architectural style from Nablus, whose wealthy merchants built handsome houses, Hebron’s main characteristic was its semi-urban, semi-peasant dwellings.

Hebron was ‘deeply Bedouin and Islamic’, and ‘bleakly conservative’ in its religious outlook, with a strong tradition of hostility to Jews. It had a reputation for religious zeal in jealously protecting its sites from Jews and Christians, but both the Jewish and Christian communities were apparently well integrated into the town’s economic life. As a result of its commercial decline, tax revenues diminished significantly, and the Ottoman government, avoiding meddling in complex local politics, left Hebron relatively undisturbed, to become ‘one of the most autonomous regions in late Ottoman Palestine’. The Jewish community was under French protection until 1914. The Jewish presence itself was divided between the traditional Sephardi community, whose members spoke Arabic and adopted Arab dress, and the more recent influx of Ashkenazi Jews. They prayed in different synagogues, sent their children to different schools, lived in different quarters and did not intermarry. The community was largely Orthodox and anti-Zionist.
Wikipedia.

Christmas Day Procession, Bethlehem


Bethlehém. Le jour de Noël – Christmas Day – La Fiesta de Navidad en Belén – La Festa della nascità a Betlem
[Bethlehem. Christmas Day]

A horizontal postcard depicting the area of the ceremony infront of the Church of the Nativity on Christmas day. It descrobes the procession with the cross to the Church of the Nativity. In the center a priest with white cape, holding a big cross. On both sides two lines of clergy men, also in white capes. (The capes above black cloaks.) This procession is in a big crowd of people, and also on the roofs around. The clothing looks like an arab clothing – colored cloaks, turbans, and so forth, and also western people with suits. On the side we can wee horses and camels. The point of view for this picture is from the Church of the Nativity to its plaza.
National Library of Israel

The Square is flanked by two other major attractions – the Church of St Catherine and the Church of Nativity. Manger Square takes its name from the adjacent Church of the Nativity that enshrines the Grotto the Nativity (the “manger”) where Jesus was born although the square itself is not mentioned in the Bible. As the heart of Bethlehem’s Old City Manger Square is the center for all tourist activity and the starting point of most Bethlehem tours. Manger Square is also the site of many events throughout the year. Flanking the Square are the 4th century Church of Nativity; Church of St. Catherine; the Mosque of Omar; Bethlehem Municipality building; souvenir stores and the Bethlehem Peace Center. During the Ottoman-era Manger Square was an open space used as a fresh produce and livestock market. In 1929 the market was moved to a new location in the Old City.
BeinHarim Tours

Elisha’s Spring, Jericho


JERICO
Fontaine d’Elisee
Elisas’s fountain
Elizaquelle

Date: not sure. Maybe 1920s

Approximate location.

And the men of the city said unto Elisha, Behold, I pray thee, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord seeth: but the water is naught, and the ground barren. And he said, Bring me a new cruse, and put salt therein. And they brought it to him. And he went forth unto the spring of the waters, and cast the salt in there, and said, Thus saith the Lord, I have healed these waters; there shall not be from thence any more death or barren land. So the waters were healed unto this day, according to the saying of Elisha which he spake.
2 Kings 2:19-22 (King James Version)

Elisha’s Spring (also called the Prophet’s Fountain and Elisha’s Fountain) is a fresh water spring near the archaeological mound of Tel Jericho where remains of settlements were found dating back to about 8,000 BC. The people who settled here so long ago would have done so to take advantage of the fresh water which is such a scarcity in the harsh desert environment just north of the Dead Sea. Elisha’s Spring makes Jericho an oasis or City of Palms in the otherwise dry surroundings. The perennial spring continues to produce plenty of water which has a temperature of 26˚C.
Bein Harim Tourism Services

Life in the Holy Land

Images on Wikimedia Commons (more under the Ein El Sultan category)>

Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem


Hand writing says “Church of Saint George, Bethlehem”

No date clues on the card, but this website has the same images, so most likely 1910s.

Google Street View

Feuding monks at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem don’t just cast the first stone—they stockpile rocks in anticipation of future altercations. Several holy men landed in the hospital two Christmases ago after a fight broke out over the dusting of church chandeliers. The occasional brawls at the 1,700-year-old basilica, believed to mark the birthplace of Jesus Christ, reflect the difficulty of housing three Christian denominations under a single roof.

And now that roof is rotting, threatening the structural integrity of the building. Parts of the wooden truss structure date to the 15th century, and holes in the timbers allow dirty water to drip upon the precious paintings and mosaics below. The problem has been worsening for decades, but the resident clerics—from the Greek Orthodox and Armenian Orthodox churches and the Franciscan order of the Roman Catholic Church—are jealous of each other’s claims of custody and have been unable to agree on a plan of action.
Endangered Site: Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem (Smithsonian Magazine)

The present Church of the Nativity is one of the earliest Christian structures. The original Basilica, erected in the 4th century by Emperor Constantine, was completely destroyed in the Samaritan Revolt of 529 A.D. It was replaced during the reign of Justinian (527-65) on the same site, by a larger Basilica, slightly different in plan and incorporating different parts of the original building. Evidence of the turbulent history of the church can be readily seen in the fabric of the building; for centuries it was one of the most fought-over of the Holy Places. It was only by chance that this building escaped destruction during the Persian invasion of A.D. 614. It was the only major church in the country to be spared. Later, the building was seized and defended by a succession of Moslem and Crusader armies; this explains the fortress-like appearance of the church’s exterior. This is also a common feature of most of the ancient religious buildings in the Holy Land. In the course of time, the complex was expanded by the addition of several chapels and monasteries belonging to different Christian Churches.
Church of the Nativity: History & Structure:

Sanctuary Bethlehem has virtual tour (I’d recommend using the on screen controls rather than the mouse), 3D models and a lot of information about various rooms, buildings, caves etc. (under Visit menu)

Wikipedia