KIRIATH-JEARIM (Heb. קִרְיַת יְעָרִים), city of the Hivites belonging to the Gibeonite confederation (Josh. 9:17). Its original name was Kiriath-Ba'al or Baalah. Kiriath-Jearim was situated on the border of Judah and Benjamin (Josh. 15:9, 60; 18:14, 15) and was connected with the family of caleb (I Chron. 2:50, 52, 53). The tribe of Dan camped in its vicinity for some time (Judg. 18:12). When the Ark was rescued from the Philistines, it was placed in the house of Abinadab in Kiriath-Jearim (I Sam. 6:21; 7:1, 2) until eventually brought by David to Jerusalem (II Sam. 6:2ff.; I Chron. 13:5, 6; II Chron. 1:4). It was the home town of uriah , the son of the prophet Shemaiah, who fled to Egypt and was caught and executed by the king Jehoiakim (Jer. 26:20). The inhabitants of Kiriath-Jearim were among those who returned from Babylonian exile (Ezra 2:25; Neh. 7:29). According to Eusebius, the place was a station 9 or 10 mi. from Jerusalem on the road to Diospolis (Lod; Onom. 48:22; 114:23). The identification of Kiriath-Jearim with Tell/Deir (Dayr) al-ʿAzār about 8 mi. (13 km.) west of Jerusalem in the village of abu ghosh is generally accepted. The Crusaders considered this site to be the ancient Emmaus, also calling it Fontenoid because of the springs below the tell. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Abel, in: RB, 34 (1925), 580; 43 (1934), 351; M. Noth, Das Buch Josua (1938), 61–62, 81; EM, S.V. Ba'alah (includes bibliography); Aharoni, Land, index; Avi-Yonah, Geog, index. (Michael Avi-Yonah)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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