Migdal, Ḥorvat

By Etan Ayalon


Ḥorvat Migdal (Ẓur Natan) is about 25 a. in area and located in the center of a long spur on the western slopes of the Samaria Hills, near Moshav Ẓur Natan. It occupies an excellent ecological and economic position, due to its proximity to the Via Maris, the transverse road from Shechem to the Mediterranean coast, and a constant water supply at the spring of ‘En Dardar located at its foot. An inscription uncovered in the synagogue at the site attests that in the Byzantine period the village was called Antesion, a name unknown in historical sources. It has been identified with a fortified Crusader site called Casale Moyen, but the total absence of finds, especially coins, from this period makes this identification improbable. In the Mameluke period the Arab village of Majdal Yibwa was established on its ruins; the tomb known as Sheikh Musharaf was built on the edge of the village, on top of the hall of the synagogue.

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