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Nebi Samwil - Tomb of Samuel
The Tomb of Samuel, (Hebrew: קבר שמואל, Kever Shmuel; popularly known as Nebi Samuel, Arabic: Nebi Samwil), is the traditional burial site of the biblical Hebrew prophet Samuel on the top of a steep hill, 908 metres high, on the outskirts of the Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sanhedria. The tomb is located in the lower level of the building. The ground floor level contains a functioning mosque. Archaeological excavations around the building have turned up several important finds, including the remains of an ancient quarry, and ruins from the First Temple and Hasmonean periods (some identify the site as the Mizpeh in the Book of Samuel. According to a sixth-century Christian author, the site was the burial place of the Prophet Samuel. According to the Scriptures, however, Samuel was buried in his hometown, Ramah, further east (1Samuel 25:1, 28:3). A large monastery was built by the Byzantines, of which little remains. The Crusaders named the place "Mount of Joy", Mons Gaudi, because it was from here they caught their first glimpse of Jerusalem. They built a fortress on the site which was razed by the Mamelukes. Nebi Samuel's strategic location made it the site of battles during the British conquest of Ottoman Palestine in 1917, the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and the 1967 Six-Day War.

Nebi Samwil - Site of a Biblical Town
Nebi Samwil is located on a hill (908 m. above sea level), some 5 km. north of Jerusalem. The hill provides a good view of Jerusalem and controls the roads leading to the city from the north: the road from the Coastal Plain in the west and that from Samaria to the north of Jerusalem. The large mosque with a high, round minaret on the top of the hill is clearly visible from Jerusalem. It is revered by both Jews and Muslims because the cave beneath it is the traditional burial place of the prophet Samuel.

Tradition associates Nebi Samwil with biblical Ramah, the burial place of the prophet Samuel. (I Samuel 25:1; 28:3) But modern studies have identified Nebi Samwil with biblical Mitzpa, a town of cultic importance in the territory of the Tribe of Benjamin. (Joshua 18:26 and Judges 21:1-8) Gedaliah son of Ahikam, who was appointed governor of Judah by the Babylonians, lived in Mitzpa and was assassinated there. (Jeremiah 41:1-10) After the return from exile, the people of Mitzpa participated in repairing the walls of Jerusalem and in the building of the Second Temple. (Nehemiah 3:7, 19)

The cultic importance of Mitzpa to the Jews during the Hellenistic period is evident from a reference in I Maccabees 3:46: They assembled at Mitzpa, opposite Jerusalem, for in former times Israel had a place of worship at Mitzpa. The proximity of Mitzpa to Jerusalem and the discovery, in the archeological excavations, of finds from the First Temple period and from Hasmonean times, lend validity to the identification of the site as the biblical Mitzpa.

Comprehensive excavations were conducted at Nebi Samwil from 1992 to 1999. On the southeastern slopes of the site, previously unknown remains from the beginning of settlement there were found; they had not been damaged by the intensive construction activity of the Crusaders. The Crusader fortress with its fortifications and the building complex outside its walls were uncovered
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