The city of Ashkelon
Past and Present
The beauty and the historical flavor of Ashkelon feels scarcely the visitor comes to the spacious Shopping center in Afridar, with his beautiful tower clock and contemplates the blue waters of the Mediterranean in squared between white Roman columns of marble and between the elegant good lawn.
Ashkelon is a beautiful place to 56 km to the south of Tel Aviv and 73 km to the Jerusalem Southwest. Resting on the banks of the sea Meditarráneo and close to the desert of the Neguev, it has been favored by a climate especially agreeably, both fresh and dry. Rainy days are rare and it possesses one of the thinnest beaches of the country as well as innumerable places of entertainment. Ashkelon bloomed under the diet of Greek and Roman. Herodes enlarged and embellished in big way the city, which believes it was his birth place.
A few Jews remained in Ashkelon when this one turned in a Christian city under the Byzantine diet. It was taken by the Muslims in the year 638 DC, being so well fortified and defended that the crossed ones could not conquer it until the year 103, when a limited Jewish community was still staying in the place. Destruída comletamente in 1270 for the Sultan Baibars, was left until in 1948, with the reconstruction of the modern Ashkelon, the prediction of Zefania it became true.
The modern Ashkelon consists of several quarters of which the first, called Afridar, was established in the year 1952 across an initiative of the South African Jewish Gathering. Today, the above mentioned quarter has turned into a suburvio with profuse vegetation where there are most of the hotels and places of recreation of Ashkelon. Migdal, previously an Arab people of a few centuries of antiquity and located to the east of Ashkelon, has been incorporated to this strong city in 1955. We recommend a visit to the markets outdoors that are carried out during the mornings from Monday until Thursday.
Information on Ashkelon and his surroundings
Ashdod: 28.8 km to the north of Ashkelon, Asdod is the new Israeli port of deep waters and a strong new city grows in his outskirts. Founded in 1957, it is located 5 km to the north of the Biblical Ashdod, one of five principal cities of the Philistines.
Beit Guvrin: located 38 km to the east of Ashkelon. It had little importance until for decree of the emperor Séptimo Severo, the city was enlarged and fortified. It was conquered for crossed to the beginning of the XIIth century DC, which re-fortified and constructed a citadel. Later Saladino destroyed the city, but the remains of a building of the crossed ones can still appreciate.
Kfar Silver: A school of agriculture called in honor to Abba Hilel Silver, renowned rabbi and American Zionist leader. An American secondary school, Molly goodman School, was established recently under the auspices of the Council of Education of the city of New York.
Kiriat Gat: To 24 km to the east of the city of Ashkelon on the route Ashkelon - Beer Sheva, is an industrial town of rapid growth placed in the heart of the region of Lajish (Jevel Lajish), which one is a network of approximately 30 peoples established from 1954. In his outskirts we can find a Tel that is presumed it is the place of the city of Gat, one of the principal Philistine cities and the place of the giant's birth. Excavations have revealed that the origin of the city dates back to the bronze age, having been pottery remains with the stamps of the Kings of Judea.
Lajish: The famous Biblical city of Lajish is to 32 km to the east of Ashkelon. This was a city much disputed because of his strategic position, since the routes were happening for his outskirts to Egypt and towards the outskirts of the Mounts of Judea and Jerusalem. At present, in the British Museum 701 ADC can appreciate under reliefs in stone of the palace of ninive the victory hardly achieved by the Emperor Assyrian Senaquerib on the Jewish Lajish defenders in the year.
Nine establishments levels have been excavated in the place, the most ancient of them of half of the third millenium ADC. Lajish is mentioned in the Josue book like one of the cities canaanitas destruídas by the Israelis: "And Josue, and the whole Israel with him, happened from Libna to Laquis, and I camp close to her, and it fought it; and God delivered Laquis in israel's hand, and took it on the following day, and hurt it to sword knife-edge, with everything what in her had life, as well as it had done in Libna" (Josue, 10:31,32). David developed Lajish and his grandson Rejavam her fortified. At the end of the VIth century ADC, Nabucodonosor, King of Babylonia, destroyed it completely.
Mareshá: Nearly three kilometers to the south-west of Beit Guvrin find the remains of the city of Merashá, which ADC dates of the IInd century. Fortified by Rejajavam in the same epoch as Lajish, it was conquered by the Idumeos during the period Hasmoneo. ADC was thrown finally by Juan Hircano, Juda's nephew the Macabeo at the end of the IInd century. Excavations done in the place there are reverlado numerous remains of foundations of the city of that epoch, as well as cisterns, caves mortuaorias and a Columbarium with more than 2000 niches. The remains of a basilica belonging to the Crossed ones are close.
He was denying: Founded in 1939 already to 18 km to the Ashkelon south-west, this kibbutz was in his epoch the agricultural establishment more to the south of the country. There was the scene of one of the battles more encarnecidas of the War of the Independence in 1948, when it was attacked by Egyptian forces parked in Metzudat Ioav. The settlers pushed the attack back but the kibbutz was completely destruído, being later reconstruído.
Iad Mordejai: 16 km to the south of Ashkelon. During the War of the Independence a few settlers of Yad Mordejai contained up to 5000 soldiers and armored Egyptians for the space of six days which had enough time for the Haganá to reorganize his defense of Tel Aviv. Actuelmente can appreciate the above mentioned big act of courage immortalized in the reconstruction of the Egyptian attack that includes tanks fictitious, a plane, weapon and a troop and covers a three acres surface.
An explanation in several languages is offered in the place. Iad Mordejai was founded by members of the movement Jalutziano and it takes the name of the leader of the Raising of the Ghetto of Warsaw, Mordejai Anilevich. In the center of the kibbutz in a park species there gets up a statue of the Jewish hero and close to her the remains of a water tower, destruída for the Egyptian cannons during the attack of 1948. There exists also in the place a museum dedicated to the period from the Raising of the Ghetto of Warsaw up to the War of the Independence.
Source: Shalom Online