AZEKAH (Heb. עֲזֵקָה), biblical town in the Shephelah on the road leading north from Lachish to Beth-Horon. Eusebius describes Azekah (Onom. 18:10–12) as a village situated between Eleutheropolis (Bet-Guvrin) and Jerusalem. After the second battle of Ai, Joshua pursued the fleeing Canaanites down the ascent of the Beth-Horon road to Azekah and a hailstorm wrought havoc among them as far as Azekah (Josh. 10:10, 11). The town was included in the northern district of Judah (ibid. 15:35). In the days of Saul the border between Israel and Philistia ran between Socoh and Azekah in the valley of Elah and it was here that the armies of the two peoples were drawn up during the battle between David and Goliath (I Sam. 17:2). The town was fortified by Rehoboam to protect Judah against Egypt and the Philistine cities (II Chron. 11:9). Because of Judah's involvement in the Ashdod-led rebellion of 713–12 B.C.E., a part of the Assyrian army invading Philistia in 712 attacked and captured Azekah which lay close to the Philistine border and almost due east of Ashdod (Sargon II Inscription). A reference to this attack, which probably resulted in Judah's submission, may be contained in Isaiah 20 ff. In 588 B.C.E. Lachish and Azekah were the last two provincial fortresses of Judah to hold out against Nebuchadnezzar (Jer. 34:7). A passage in a Lachish ostracon which dates from this period seems to imply that Lachish was still standing after Azekah had fallen. The campaigns of both Sargon II and Nebuchadnezzar indicate that Azekah lay astride the approach road to Jerusalem. After the fall of Jerusalem Azekah continued to be a Jewish town (cf. Neh. 11:30). It is generally identified with Tell Zakariyeh where excavations carried out in 1899–1900 uncovered remains of a rectangular fortress with square towers from the period of the Kingdom of Judah. Azekah is possibly mentioned in a baraita (Dem. 5:2, 53; Yev. 122a) as a place producing quality fruit, although the meaning of the passage is uncertain. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: F.J. Bliss and R.A.S. Macalister, Excavations in Palestine (1902), 12–27; Tadmor, in: BIES, 24 (1960), 24; idem, in: Journal of Cuneiform Studies, 12 (1958), 80–83; Abel, Geog, 2 (1938), 257; Z. Vilnay, Israel Guide (1961), 167–8; Aharoni, Land, index. (Michael Avi-Yonah)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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  • Azekah — dug over a town in the Shephelah or low hills of Judah.Azekah guarded the upper reaches of the Valley of Elah. It is identified with Tell Zakariyeh, about 26 km (16 mi) northwest of Hebron. Excavations reveal walls and towers at the place. In the …   Wikipedia

  • Azekah —    Dug over, a town in the Shephelah or low hills of Judah (Josh. 15:35), where the five confederated Amoritish kings were defeated by Joshua and their army destroyed by a hailstrom (10:10, 11). It was one of the places re occupied by the Jews on …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • LACHISH OSTRACA — LACHISH OSTRACA, a collection of inscribed sherds discovered at lachish by J.L. Starkey . Eighteen were discovered in 1935 in a room adjacent to the city gate, among the ruins of stratum II, which was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia, and …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Socoh (Shephelah) — Socoh or Soco (Hebrew: שוכו, שוכה) was a town in the Shephelah of Judah, situated between Adullam and Azekah (Josh. 15:35).The Philistines camped between Socoh and Azekah prior to the encounter of David and Goliath (Sam. 17:1). Rehoboam fortified …   Wikipedia

  • АЗЕК — [Азека; евр. , ], г. в Сев. Иудее. Впервые упоминается в библейском рассказе о победе Иисуса Навина над 5 амморейскими царями (Нав 10. 10 11); далее в описании городов колена сынов Иудиных (Нав 15. 35); в истории Давида и Голиафа (1 Цар 17. 1); в …   Православная энциклопедия

  • HEZEKIAH — (Heb. חִזְקִיָּהוּ ,חִזְקִיָּה; YHWH is (my) strength, shortened form of יְחִזְקִיָּהוּ; in cuneiform transcription Ḫazaqiau, YHWH is strong ), son of Ahaz, king of Judah (II Kings 18–20; II Chron. 29–32). Hezekiah reigned for 29 years in… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • SOCOH OR SOCO — (Sokhko; Heb. שׂוֹכוֹ, שׂוֹכֹה). (1) Town in the Shephelah of Judah, situated between Adullam and Azekah (Josh. 15:35). The Philistines camped between Socoh and Azekah prior to the encounter of David and Goliath (I Sam. 17:1). Rehoboam fortified… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • ẒEDAKAH — (Heb. צְדָקָה; righteous act, or charity ), word derived from the root צדק ( to be correct ). In the Bible, it is variantly used: as righteousness, in the sense of piety (Gen. 15:6); as justice (Amos 5:7; 6:12); as right in one s claims (II Sam.… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Biblical archaeology — Part of a series on The Bible …   Wikipedia

  • Sokho — (transliterated thus from the Hebrew; also Sokhoh or Sochoh, but not with initial Sh; transliterated Soco from Greek transliterations; spelled שוכה ,שוכו and שכה in Biblical Hebrew and סוכו in Mishnaic Hebrew; meaning perhaps related to fence or… …   Wikipedia

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