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What was Iliesis of Tiberias ( אילסיס דטיבריה ) and where was it? A New Solution to an Old Geographic-Linguistic Riddle

Emmanuel Mastey

Pages 283 - 302


The geographic name Iliesis of Tiberias ( אילסיס דטיבריה ) is mentioned six times in Jewish Palestinian Aramaic sources from the Byzantine period, namely, Jerusalem Talmud (a. k. a. Talmud Yerushalmi, or Palestinian Talmud) and in a few aggadic midrashim. It is a compound of an unknown Greek term, and the attributive “of Tiberias,” conjoined by the genitive Aramaic particle ־ ד. Since the Middle Ages, ample attempts have been made to identify the Greek source word, subsequently leading to various solutions. On the basis of a refined analysis of the contexts in which the toponym appears, and an indepth linguistic consideration, a new solution is suggested for the identification of the Greek term and for the nature and location of the site near Tiberias, outside of the city.

This article is written in English.


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