Ancient Sources

The Peraea and the Dead Sea

21. Waters of Callirhoe - (Zara)



Josephus, War 1.33.5 (1st cent. A.D.)
(Herod) went over Jordan, and made use of the hot waters of Callirrhoe, which run into the lake As-phaltitis, but are themselves sweet enough to be drunk.

No biblical text available

Josephus, War 1.33.5 (1st cent. A.D.)
(656) After this, the distemper seized upon his whole body, and greatly disordered all its parts with various symptoms; for there was a gentle fever upon him, and an intolerable itching over all the surface of his body, and continual pains in his colon, and dropsical tumors about his feet and an inflammation of the abdomen,-and a putrefication of his privy member, that produced worms. Besides which he had a difficulty of breathing upon him, and could not breathe but when he sat upright, and had a convulsion of all his members; insomuch that the diviners said those diseases were a punishment upon him for what he had done to the rabbis. (657) Yet did he struggle with his numerous disorders, and still had a desire to live, and hoped for recovery, and considered of several methods of cure. Accordingly, he went over Jordan, and made use of those hot baths at Callirrhoe, which run into the lake Asphaltitis, but are themselves sweet enough to be drank. And here the physicians thought proper to bathe his whole body in warm oil, by letting it down into a large vessel full of oil; whereupon his eyes failed him, and he came and went as if he were dying, (658) and as a tumult was then made by his servants, at their voice he revived again. Yet did he after this despair of recovery, and gave orders that each soldier should have fifty drachmae apiece, and that his commanders and friends should have great sums of money given them.

Map Section 3 Place Discussion

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Created Saturday, December 16, 2000 at 11:56:39
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copyright - Studium Biblicum Franciscanum - Jerusalem 2000