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it was honoured with a bishop's seat, and it ran the same fortune with the rest, for it was after taken and retaken by the Saracens and Christians; under Fulch the fourth king of Jerusalem, and after the death of Godfry of Bulloin, the king of Damascus wrested it from the Christians, and shortly after by them again it was recovered. Lastly, now it remaineth, with all that part of the world, subjected to the Turk.
§. 4. Of Capernaum, and the cities of Decapolis. AMONG the remarkable cities within this tribe, Capernaum is not the least, so often remembered by the evangelists. This city had the honour of Christ's presence three years; who for that time was as a citizen thereof, in which he first preached and taught the doctrine of our salvation, according to that notable prophecy of Isaiah ix. 2. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light : they that dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.
Capernaum was seated on Jordan, even where it entereth into the sea of Galilee, in an excellent and rich soil ; of whose destruction Christ himself prophesied in these words: And thou, Capernaum, which art lifted up unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell, &c. which shewed the pride and greatness of that city, for it was one of the principal cities of Decapolis, and the metropolis of Galilee. And although there were some marks of this city's magnificence in St. Jerome's time, as himself confesseth, it being then a reasonable burgh or town; yet those that have since, and long since seen it, as Brochard, Breidenbech, and Saliniac, affirm, that it then consisted but of six poor fishermen's houses.
The region of ten principal cities, called Decapolitana, or Decapolis, is in this description often mentioned, and in k St. Matthew, Mark, and Luke also remembered; but I find no agreement among the cosmographers what proper limits it had ; and so Pliny himself confesseth: for Marius Niger, speaking from others, bounds it on the north by the
k Matt. iv. Mark vii. Luke viji. Niger. Comment. Asiæ 4. fol. 503.
mountain Casius in Casiotis, and endeth it to the south at Egypt and Arabia ; by which description it embraceth Phoenicia, a part of Cælesyria, all Palæstina, and Judæa.
m Pliny also makes it large, and for the ten cities of which it taketh name, he numbereth four of them to be situated towards Arabia, to wit, first these three, Damascus, n Opotos, Raphana; then Philadelphia; (which was first called Amana, saith Stephanus, or, as I guess, Amona rather, because it was the chief city of the Ammonites, known by the name of Rabbah, before Ptol. Philadelphus gave it this later and new name;) then Scythopolis, sometime Nysa, built (as is said) by Bacchus in memory of his nurse, who died therein, anciently known by the name of Bethsan ; for the sixth he setteth Gadara, (not that Gadara in Coelesyria, which was also called Antioch and Seleucia,) but it is Gadara in Basan, which Pliny in this place meaneth, seated on a high hill, near the river Hieromaix. This river Ortelius takes to be the river Jaboc, which boundeth Gad and Manasseh over Jordan; but he mistaketh it, for Hieromaix falleth into the sea of Galilee, between Hippos and Gerasa, whereas Jaboc entereth the same sea between Ephron and Phanuel. For the seventh, he nameth • Hippos, or Hippion, a city so called of a colony of horsemen there garrisoned by Herod, on the east side of the Galilæan sea, described hereafter in the tribe of Manasseh over Jordan. For the eighth, Pella, which is also called Butis, and Berenice, seated in the south border of the region over Jordan called Peræa. For the ninth, Gelasa, which Josephus takes to be Gerasa; and Gerasa is found in Cælesyria by Josephus, Hegesippus, and Stephanus; but by Ptolomy (whom I rather follow) in Phænicia. The tenth and last, Pliny nameth Canatha, and so doth Suetonius and Stephanus, which Volaterran calls Gamala, but Hegesippus rightly Camala, a city in the region of Basan over Jordan, so called because those two hills, on which it is seated, have the shape of a camel. m Plin. l. 5. c. 18.
Pliny hath Hippon Dion, for which n Opotos, a city standing in the val- Volaterran reads Hippidion. Ortelius ley of Cælesyria, watered by Chry- takes them for two cities. sorrhoas, as Damascus is. Plin. l. 5.
But the collection of these ten cities, whereof this region took name, is better gathered out of Brochard, Breidenbach, and Saligniac, which makes them to be these; Cæsarea Philippi and Asor, before remembered, Cedes Nephtalim, Sephet, Corazin, Capernaum, Bethsaida, Jotapata, Tiberias, and Scythopolis, or Bethsan. For all other authors disagree herein, and give no reason for their opinion. One place of the evangelist St. Matthew makes it manifest, that this region, called Decapolitana, was all that tract between Zidon and the sea of Galilee: for thus it is written in Matthew iv. And he departed again from the coasts of Tyrus and Zidon, and came unto the sea of Galilee, through the midst of the coasts of Decapolis: so that it was bounded by Damascus and Libanus on the north, by the Phænician sea, between Zidon and Ptolomais, on the west, by the hills of Gelbo and Bethsan on the south, and by the mountains Tracones, otherwise Hermon, Sanir, and Galaad, on the east; which is, from east to west, the whole breadth of the Holy Land; and from the north to the south near the same distance, which may be each way forty English miles.
Of Hamath. BUT to look back again towards Libanus, there is seated, near the foot thereof, the city of P Hammath, or Chammath, of which (as they say) the country adjoining taketh name; the same which Josephus calleth Amathitis and Amathensis: 9 Jacobus Zeigler, Ituræa. Ituræa regio tenet borealia tribus Nephtali, per montem Libanum usque Trachones. “ The country of Ituræa," saith he, "containeth the north
parts of the tribe of Nephtali, along the mount Libanus “ to Trachones.” But herein following Strabo, who calls Trachonitis, Ituræa, he mistakes the seat of this region ;
p The Septuagint write it Ammath. there is added, (in Israel,) to note that Jerome, Emath. Josephus, Amath. it was of old belonging to Judah, Josh. xix. 35. Chammath. ch. xxi. though seated in Israel, that is, in the 32. Chammoth-Dor. i Chron. vi. 76. kingdom of the ten tribes, the other Chammon. 2 Kings xiv. 8. Cham- Chamath being in Syria Soba. math-Jehudæ, as Junius reads it. 9 Zeigler. in Neptal. Whereas also, for further distinction,
and so doth Mercator. For indeed were Ituræa' (which Hegesippus calls Peræa, and G. Tyrius, Baccar) the same with Traconitis, yet Traconitis itself is far more to the east than Hammath in Nephtalim; for Traconitis lieth between Cæsarea Philippi and the mountains Trachones, which the Hebrews call Gilead; and this Hammath, or Chammath, is seated under Cæsarea, towards the sea westward. And it seemeth that this mistaking grew by confounding Emath, or Hamath the Great in Cælesyria, beyond the mountains Trachones, which "Jerome upon Amos calls Antiochia, with Hammath, or Hamath the Lesser in Phænicia, and Nephtalim, which he calleth Epiphania ; for this Hammath, or in our translation Hamath, (and not that which is commonly called Emath, which, 2 Chron. viii. 3. is set far from the north border of Canaan in Syria Soba,) is remembered in Numb. xxxiv. 8. and Numb. xii. 21. and in Ezek. xlvii. 20. In the first of which places it bordereth the land of promise; these being the words: From mount Hor you shall point (that is, direct or draw a line) until it come to Hamath. In the second place, thus: So they went up and searched out the land from the wilderness of Sin unto Rehob, to go to
So Jerome in his comment in be that Chamath-Tsoba; for in the Amos vi. 2. where there is mention line which should make the north of liamath the Great, as it seems, for border, which begins at the great sea, distinction from the other in Neph- they make Moses to name never a talim; though Mat. Beroaldus, reject place eastward along all the breadth ing Jerome, rather follows the opin- of the Holy Land, until we come to ion of Zeigler above mentioned, as Hermon, (for so they expound mount indeed it cannot easily be justified, Hor, Numb. xxxiv. 7.) and beyond that either one or other of these is Hermon eastward in this north side, either Antiochia or Epiphania; how- they make him to name divers towns, beit, that the same city which, Josh. first Chamath, then Tsedad, then Zixix. 35. is called Chammath, and phron, and lastly, Chatsar-henan; placed in Nephtalim, was also called a thing most unlikely, seeing Israel Chamath, (whence the word Hamath had little or nothing eastward beyond and Emath were framed,) it may be Hermon. Therefore we must needs gathered, partly because the other expound Hor to be one of the hills Hamath, 2 Chron. viii. 3. for distinc- near Sidon; and so those towns, as tion is called Chamath-Tsoba, as this they are named, to lie in order on the (as it may seem by Josh. xxi. 32.) north side of Asher, Nephtalim, and was Chamath-Dor, and Chamath- Manasseh ; and in like manner those Judæ, as we have noted 2 Kings xxiv. in Ezekiel ; first Chetlon, then ChaSecondly, because Numb. xxxiv. 8. math; and so in order, Berotha, Siand also Ezek. xlvii. 10. Chameth, in braim, Tsedad, Chauran, Chatsarthe north side of the Holy Land, is Henan. placed too near the west corner to
Hamath. Then in Ezekiel : The west part also shall be the great sea from the border, till a man come over against Hamath; that is, the coast of the sea shall be the west border from the southernmost part of the Holy Land, till you come directly over against Hamath northward; from whence, if a line be drawn to the sea, it will touch the walls of Zidon; which is s the north-west corner of the Holy Land. Now that this Hamath, or Hammath, which Moses also made the confine of the Holy Land, is that of Nephthalim, both the reference which it hath to the west sea, and the city of Rehob adjoining prove it: the other Hamath, or Emath, (being far removed, and beyond the forenamed mountains, which enclose all those lands which Israel ever had possession of,) is that Emath which is also called Ituræa, witness u Stella and Laicstan; and not that in Nephtalim, where * Jonathas Macchabæus attended the army of Demetrius, who fled from him and removed by night.
For though Traconitis be comprehended within Ituræa, (and therefore it is said to be finitima Galileæ Gentium,) yet it hath beginning over the mountains Traconis, and so it stretcheth into the plains of the territory of Ituræa; whence Philip, the brother of Herod, was tetrarch or president both of Ituræa and Traconitis; both which are over Jordan towards the east. But Chamath in Nephthalim is on the west side of Jordan towards the Mediterranean sea.
The country Ituræa was so called of Jethur, one of the sons of Ishmael; it is placed in the bounds of Cælesyria and Arabia y the Desert.
The people of Ituræa were valiant and warlike men, and excellent archers. Of whom Virgil:
• Of which, Josh. xix. 35.
biæs, may in part give witness. Also + Which Rehob, or Rechob, in Josh. the place of 1 Chron. v. 19. confirms xix. 28. is placed in Asher towards it, where Jetur is named among the Zidon, in the confines of Nephthalim. Hagarens, against whom the Ruben
u Tilemanus Stella and Peter Laic- ites and Gadites made war, and whose stan, in their tables of the Holy country they possessed in the time of Land.
Jeroboam, as their forefathers had * Joseph, Ant. 13. 8.
done in the time of Saul, after his y That it doth perly belong to conquest of the Amalekites, 1 Chron. Arabia, the name of Jetur, Ismael's V. 10. where the country is placed at son, whose issue settled in the Ara- the east of Gilead.