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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(Heb. Rakkath', רִקִּת, shore; Sept. ῾Ρακκάθ v. r. Δακέθ ), a fortified city in the tribe of Naphtali, mentioned only in Joshua 19:35, where it is grouped between Hammath and Chinnereth. We may hence infer that it lay on the western shore of the lake of Galilee, not far distant from the warm baths of Tiberias,which are on the site of the ancient Hammath (q.v.). According to the rabbins (Megillah, 6 a), Rakkath stood upon the spot where the city of Tiberias was afterwards built (see Lightfoot, opp. ii, 223). (See CINNERETH). Rakkath appears to have fallen to ruin at an early period, or at least it was not a place of sufficient note to be mentioned in history, and the name passed away altogether when Tiberias was founded. The statement of Josephus that ancient tombs had to be removed to make room for the buildings of Tiberias does not, as Dr. Robinson supposes, make it impossible that the city stood on the site of Rakkath (Josephus, Ant. 18:2, 3; Robinson, Bib. Res. ii, 389). Rakkath may have stood close on the shore where there were no tombs; while Tiberias, being much larger, extended some distance up the adjoining rocky hill-sides, in which the tombs may still be seen. Thomson (Land and Book, ii, 66) identifies Hammath with the Emmaus of Josephus (Ant. 18:2, 3), and supposes Rakkath to be the same name with the Arab Keralk, at the mouth of the Jordan; but this latter rather represents the ancient Tarichlla (q.v.). The ennmeration of the towns in the connection requires us to understand this to be the same with the name preceding, i.e. Hammath-Rakkath. (See NAPHTALI, TRIBE OF).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Rakkath'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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