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Reference: Megiddo


One of the most important of the fortress cities of ancient Canaan. It was captured by Thothmes iii in the 23rd year of his reign, the spoils being magnificent; and it is mentioned several times in the Tell el-Amarna correspondence. Though nominally belonging to Manasseh (Jos 17:12,18; Jg 1:27-28), the Canaanites remained in possession. Near the 'waters of Megiddo' the Canaanites under Sisera were defeated by Barak and Deborah (Jg 5:18-21). Solomon restored its fortifications (1Ki 9:15). Here king Ahaziah (2Ki 9:27) died; and the good king Josiah, interfering in a quarrel between Pharaoh-necho and the king of Assyria, and opposing the former's progress in the dangerous passage of Megiddo, was also slain (2Ki 23:29-30; 2Ch 35:22), to the grief of all Israel (Zec 12:11). Finally, it was at Armageddon (RV Har-Magedon, 'the mountains of Megiddo') that the mysterious conflict of Re 16:10 was to take place.

The site of Megiddo may now be considered as proved to be Tell el-Mutesellim ('Hill of the Governor'), a great mound about 4 miles N.W. of Tell Ta'annak (Taanach; cf. Jos 12:21; 17:11; Jg 5:19 etc.). The Importance of the site can be seen at a glance, for it guards the great pass from the Plain of Sharon to that of Esdraelon, which in all history, from Thothmes iii. to Napoleon 1., has been a route of armies. The hill has recently been excavated by the German Palestine Society, and fortifications going back before b.c. 2000 have been uncovered, as well as the most extensive remains of successive cities which have occupied this site for many centuries. Here was found the seal of Shama', 'the servant of Jerohoam'

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