and its surroundings


Edited By

K. Baedeker.

Leipsic:  Karl Baedeker



Freiburg i. Br: Karl Baedeker, Guidebooks

(The following excerpt is from the classic 1876 travel guide by Baedeker.)

"After 9 minutes a road diverges to the right, leading to Hebron and the Pools of Solomon (p. 253).  To the right here stand an insignificant building styled the Tomb of Rachel (Arabic: Kubbet Rahil).  The dome of the tomb closely resembles those of the innumerable Muslim welies (p. 35), and the whitened sarcophagus is apparently modern.  The entrance is on the N. side  The tomb is revered by Muslims, Christians and Jews, and is much visited by pilgrims, especially of the last-named faith.  The walls are covered with the names of these devotees.  The tradition appears to agree with the Bible narrative. Rachel died on the route to Ephratah (Bethlehem), in giving birth to Benjamin, and was buried 'in the way' (Gen. xxxv.19).  Throughout the whole of the Christian period the tradition has always attached to the same spot, and for many centuries the supposed tomb was marked by a pyramid of stones, of which the number was said to have been twelve, corresponding with the twelve tribes of Israel.  The monument seems to have been altered in the 15th cent., since that time it has been completely restored.  A serious objection to the genuineness of the tomb, however, is founded on the passage 1 Samuel x.2, where the boundary between Judah and Benjamin could not, for many reasons, have passed this way, it is more probable that the tomb lay on the N. side of Jerusalem."

The Friends of Rachel's Tomb
Dale Baranowski, Director, P.O. Box 24, 9094200 Elazar, Israel

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