Plural RAMOTH, an eminence; and hence many places in Palestine are named Ramah, Ramath, Ramath, Ramathaim, etc. Sometimes the same place is called by one or other of these names indiscriminately, all signifying the same, 2Ki 8:28-29. Sometimes Rama, Or Ramoth, is joined to another name, to determine the place of such city or eminence; and it is sometimes put simply for a high place, and signifies neither city nor village.
1. The principal Ramah was a city of Benjamin, near Gibeah, towards the mountains of Ephraim, six miles from Jerusalem north, and on the road from Samaria to Jerusalem, Jos 18:25; Jg 19:13; Ne 11:33. It was near the border line between Judah and Israel, and Baasha king of Israel caused it to be fortified, to obstruct the passage from the land of Judah into his own territory, 1Ki 15:17,21-22. It is also referred to in Isa 10:29; Jer 31:15; 40:1; Ho 5:8. Dr. Robinson finds it in the modern village Er-Ram, on a conical hill a little east of the road above-mentioned. The ruins are broken columns, a few bevelled stones, and large hewn stones, and an ancient reservoir on the southwest side. The village is almost deserted.
2. A city in mount Ephraim, called also Ramathaim-Zophim, or Ramah of the Zuphites, the place of Samuel's birth, residence, and burial, 1Sa 1:1,19; 7:17; 8:4; 25:1; 28:3. Dr. Robinson suggests Soba, five miles west of Jerusalem, as its possible site. The resemblance of its name Ramathaim to Arimathea of the New Testament, together with intimations of early historians, have led to the general belief that these two places were identical. Arimathea, there is little doubt, lay on one of the hills east of Lydda, some twenty miles north-west of Jerusalem; and this site would meet most of the scriptural intimations as to the Ramah of Samuel. The chief difficulty is found in the account of Saul's first visit to Samuel, 1Sa 9:4-12; 10:2. The young prince "passed through the land of the Benjamites," going south or south-west, "and came to the land of Zuph" and the city where Samuel then was. After his interview with the prophet, and on his return home to Giveah of Benjamin, he passed "by Rachel's sepulchre in the border of Benjamin at Zelzah." But the only "Rachel's sepulchre" we know of was near Bethlehem, many miles south of the direct road from Arimathea to Gibeah. Accordingly, if we suppose this interview took place at Arimathea, we seem obliged to suppose another Rachel's sepulchre between it and Gibeah; or if "Rachel's sepulchre" was at Bethlehem, to infer that the city where Saul actually found Samuel, and at which the prophet had only that day arrived, 1Sa 9:10, was not his usual residence, but some place south or south-west of Bethlehem, only visited by him at intervals in his annual circuits as judge.
3. A city of Asher, Jos 19:29.
4. A city of Naphtali, Jos 19:36. The site of both these places, visited by Dr. Robinson, is still called Rameh.
5. A city of Gilead, 2Ki 8:28-29. See RAMOTH.
The name of several places in Palestine, so called from their 'loftiness,' that being the radical meaning of the word. These are as follows:
1. City of Benjamin. It was on the frontier between Judah and Israel. Baasha, king of Israel, sought to build or fortify the place against Asa, king of Judah, but this was averted by Israel being attacked by the king of Syria at the request of Asa, who sent him a rich present of gold and silver. Jos 18:25; Jg 4:5; 19:13; 1Ki 15:17-22; 2Ch 16:1-6; Ezr 2:26; Ne 7:30; 11:33; Isa 10:29; Jer 31:15; 40:1; Ho 5:8. Called RAMA in Mt 2:18. Identified with er Ram, 31 51 N, 35 14' E.
3. Fortified city of Naphtali. Jos 19:36. Identified with er Rameh, 32 57' N, 35 22' E.
4. Boundary city in Asher. Jos 19:29. Identified by some with Ramia, 33 7' N, 35 18' E.
(a hill). This is the name of several places in the holy land.
1. One of the cities of the allotment of Benjamin.
Its site is at er-Ram, about five miles from Jerusalem, and near to Gibeah.
Its people returned after the captivity.
2. The home of Elkanah, Samuel's father,
the birthplace of Samuel himself, his home and official residence, the site of his altar ch.
and finally his burial-place, ch.
It is a contracted form of Ramathaim-zophim. All that is directly said as to its situation is that it was in Mount Ephraim,
a district without defined boundaries, The position of Ramah is a much-disputed question. Tradition, however places the residence of Samuel on the lofty and remarkable eminence of Neby Samwil which rises four miles to the northwest of Jerusalem. Since the days of Arcult the tradition appears to have been continuous. Here, then, we are inclined in the present state of the evidence, to place the Ramah of Samuel.
3. One of the nineteen fortified places of Naphtali.
Dr. Robinson has discovered a Rameh northwest of the Sea of Galilee, about 8 miles east-south-east of Safed.
4. One of the landmarks on the boundary of Asher,
apparently between Tyre and Zidon. Some place it 3 miles east of Tyre, others 10 miles off and east-southeast of the same city.
5. By this name in
and 2Chr 22:6 only, is designated Ramoth-gilead.
6. A place mentioned in the catalogue of those reinhabited by the Benjamites after their return from the captivity.