Shomron - Sebastei
On the road between Shkem and Genin lay the remains of the ancient city of
Samaria, Capital of Israeli Kingsom of Omri and Ahav. The Bible tells us
"...And he bought the mountain Shomron from Shemer for two silver Kikars,
and he built the mountain, and he called the city he built on the name of
Shemer the lord of the mountain: Shomron."
Why here ? It seems that Omri chose a neutral city, just like David chose
for his Kingdom. Shomron didn't have any traditions attached, and for this
reason all teh northern tribes would be united with this capital. It wouldn't
replace the traditional places of worship, only the economical, legislative
and political center of the Kingdom.The great kings of Israel - Omri, Ahav,
and Yerovam II, Shomron has become a large city with an impressive citadell
and a beautiful palace. This palace is what the prophets called "House of
Shen". This was a great mistery until the recent excavations, which revealed
some small but precious articles of Shenhav - tusk. These articles, mainly
women adornaments, reveal the prophets call for modesty and give us a hint
about the social problems of Shomron and their kings.
The city stood many times in siege (Matzor), and most of them successfully,
against Aram and Ashur. It's walls were high and thick, and the palaces were
full of supply.
In the city gate sat the city court, which helped King Ahav to go with Yehoshafat
King of Judea to war against Aram. But in this battle Ahav was killed, and
his blood was spread all over the city by Shomron's pool, and the dogs licked
it, and the whores washed in it, if you remember... (Kings A, 22).
Next time I will tell you about the Roman city of Herodes in Samaria called
Sabastei, and about the Columns Road, the Stadium, amphitheatre, Forum and
How to get there
From Rosh Ha-Ain: drive north to Kalkilia, but before the city, right after
the barricades (mahsom...) turn right, and continue with the signs to Alfei
Menashe, Kdumim, Shavei Shomron. About 3km north to Shavei Shomron
you will see the hill of Samaria, right after the turn to the village Sebastia.
From Natanya:Drive to Shkem through Okef Tul-Karem, and on the turn to Shavei
Shomron turn left. About 3km north to Shavei Shomron you will see the hill
of Samaria, right after the turn to the village Sebastia.
From Shkem: if you come from Shkem then you already know...
What is there to see ?
City Walls and Towers. Israeli period, Shomroni period (Sanbalat &Co.),
Helenistic period, Roman period, Bisantine period. Oh my God, I start to
sound like an arab tour guide from Sebastia...
If you need help - just call/write