Ascalon, Gaza, Negev and Sinai

117. Bethagidea - (Kh. al-Jindi)

This village, mentioned only in the Madaba map, is identical with Hirbat al-Jundi, 4 km north of Tall Abu Hurera and 12 km southeast of Gaza.

Herbert Donner, The Mosaic Map of Madaba, Kempen 1992, 74

Bellarmino Bagatti (Ancient Christian Villages of Judaea and Negev, Jerusalem - in the press)

Betakabea, Betagabea

Cyril of Scythopolis says that the village of Betakabea (kome Betakabeom ), located 12 miles from Gaza, was the birthplace of a monk named Achthabios, a priest who lived a pious life in the monastery of St. Euthymius. A brother of his, Romanus, was made ill by witchcraft. Being at the point of death, he called upon St. Euthymius who cured him in a dream. The cured man then betook himself to the monastery to give thanks on the saint's grave, and told the story of the miracle to the monks, among whom was Cyril himself. On the anniversary of his healing he used to offer a thanksgiving dinner to all his fellow-villagers (Life of Euthymius, ch.57; Festugière III, 1, pp.134-35).
Since Cyril does not give directions, it is difficult to localize the village. The variant transcriptions of the toponym in the codices (E. Schwartz, Kyril von Skythopolis [Leipzig 1939], p. 78) make it clear that it was not very common name.

A suggestion by Leah Di Segni (Jerusalem):
Possibly Betakabea or Betagabea can be identified with Bethacatha, said by Sozomen to be a village near Gaza (Historia Ecclesiastica III, 14), and with Bethagidea which appears in the Madaba map in this area. The latter was identified by Avi-Yonah (Gazetteer, p.36) with H. Beth ha-Gaddi, Arabic Kh. el-Jundi, where ruins of buildings and caves were observed.

For more sources and bibliography see:
Tabula Imperii Romani. Iudaea - Palaestina (Jerusalem 1994) s.v. "Bethagidea", 79.

Map Section 9 Place Sources

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Created Tuesday, December 19, 2000 at 23:40:42
by Eugenio Alliata ofm in collaboration with Stefano de Luca ofm
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copyright - Studium Biblicum Franciscanum - Jerusalem 2000