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The JUDAEAN MOUNTAINS, or JUDAEAN HILLS (Hebrew : הרי יהודה‎‎ Harei Yehuda, Arabic : جبال الخليل‎ Jibal Al Khalil), is a mountain range in Israel
Israel
and the West Bank
West Bank
where Jerusalem
Jerusalem
and several other biblical cities are located. The mountains reach a height of 1,026 metres (3,366 ft). The Judean Mountains can be separated to a number of sub-regions, including the Mount Hebron ridge, the Jerusalem
Jerusalem
ridge and the Judean slopes. These mountains formed the heartland of the Kingdom of Judah
Kingdom of Judah
, where the earliest Jewish settlements emerged.

CONTENTS

* 1 Geography * 2 Geology and history * 3 Transportation * 4 References * 5 External links

GEOGRAPHY

The range runs in a north south direction from Galilee
Galilee
to the Negev with an average height of 900 metres (2,953 ft). The Judaean mountains encompass Jerusalem
Jerusalem
, Hebron
Hebron
, Bethlehem
Bethlehem
and Ramallah
Ramallah
. The range forms a natural division between the Shephelah
Shephelah
coastal plains to the west and the Jordan Rift Valley
Jordan Rift Valley
to the east. The northern section, in the Ramallah
Ramallah
area, is also known as Samarian Hills
Samarian Hills
, while the middle section is also referred to as ' Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Hills'.

The Judaean Mountains
Judaean Mountains
were heavily forested in antiquity. The range is mostly composed of terra rossa soils over hard limestones .

View from Beit Meir
Beit Meir
in the Judaean Mountains
Judaean Mountains
Elah Valley (Wadi es-Sur) near Adullam
Adullam
with the Judean mountains in the background The Judean Hills viewed from the Dead Sea
Dead Sea

GEOLOGY AND HISTORY

The Judaean Mountains
Judaean Mountains
are the surface expression of a series of monoclinic folds which trend north-northwest through Israel. The folding is the central expression of the Syrian Arc belt of anticlinal folding that began in the Late Cretaceous Period in northeast Africa and southwest Asia. The Syrian Arc extends east-northeast across the Sinai
Sinai
, turns north-northeast through Israel
Israel
and continues the east-northeast trend into Syria. The Israeli segment parallels the Dead Sea
Dead Sea
Transform which lies just to the east. The uplift events that created the mountain occurred in two phases one in the Late Eocene
Eocene
-Early Oligocene
Oligocene
and second in the Early Miocene
Miocene
.

In prehistoric times, animals no longer found in the Levant
Levant
region were found here, including elephants , rhinoceri , giraffes and wild Asian water buffalo . The range has karst topography including a stalactite cave in Nahal Sorek National Park between Jerusalem
Jerusalem
and Beit Shemesh
Beit Shemesh
and the area surrounding Ofra
Ofra
, where fossils of prehistoric flora and fauna were found.

In ancient times the Judean mountains were the allotment of the Tribe of Judah and the heartland of the former Kingdom of Judah
Kingdom of Judah
.

TRANSPORTATION

An Israel
Israel
Railways line runs from Beit Shemesh
Beit Shemesh
along the Brook of Sorek and Valley of Rephaim into Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Malha Train Station .

REFERENCES

* ^ A B C Peter N. Peregrine
Peter N. Peregrine
, Melvin Ember
Melvin Ember
(ed.). Encyclopedia of Prehistory: South and Southwest Asia. 8. Retrieved 2012-02-13. * ^ Judaean_Mountains - Mapcarta * ^ Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Hills - Mapcarta * ^ Arieh Singer (2007). The Soils of Israel. Springer. pp. 129, 143. * ^ E. Abd El-Motaal and T.M. Kusky, 2003, Tectonic Evolution of the Intraplate S-Shaped Syrian Arc Fold-Thrust Belt of the Middle East Region in the Context of Plate Tectonics, The Third International Conference on the Geology of Africa, Vol. (2), pp. 139-157 * ^ Flexer A (1989). " Late Cretaceous evolution of the Judean Mountains as indicated by ostracodes". Terra Nova . 1: 349–358. doi :10.1111/j.1365-3121.1989.tb00385.x . * ^ Bar, Oded; Zilberman, Ezra; Feinstein, Shimon; Calvo, Ran; Gvirtzman, Zohan (2016). "The uplift history of the Arabian Plateau as inferred from geomorphologic analysis of its northwestern edge". Tectonophysics . 671: 9–23. * ^ "History of Jerusalem
Jerusalem
from Its Beginning to David". Biu.ac.il. 1997-03-06. Retrieved 2012-02-13. * ^ "Cambridge History of Judaism". Cambridge.org. p. 210. Retrieved 16 August 2011. "In both the Idumaean and the Ituraean alliances, and in the annexation of Samaria, the Judaeans had taken the leading role. They retained it. The whole political–military–religious league that now united the hill country of Palestine from Dan to Beersheba, whatever it called itself, was directed by, and soon came to be called by others, 'the Ioudaioi'" * ^ A History of the Jewish People, edited by Haim Hillel Ben-Sasson, page 226, "The name Judea no longer referred only to...."

EXTERNAL LINKS

Wikivoyage