Tiberias is considered one of the four Holy Cities of Judaism, along with Jerusalem, Hebron, and Safed. It was founded around 20 AD by Herod Agrippa, son of Herod the Great, and became his main capital. At first the more religious Jews would refuse to settle there because of a cemetery that made the site ritually unclean, so Herod brought in Gentiles from the surrounding countryside to populate the city. During the First Jewish-Roman War, Josephus (the same historian who later wrote an account of this war) took a contingent of Jews and annexed the city for the new Jewish revolt. Later when Vespasian reconquered the land, it was left standing because it professed Roman allegiance. The city survives today with remnants from several of it’s former owners, including the Crusaders and the Turks. It is now a predominantly Jewish city. Tiberias was built and populated while Jesus was alive, but there is no record of him visiting the city.  Also, an interesting archaeological find was made near the city of a coin with Jesus name and face, issued by Constantinople for the First Millennium anniversary of Jesus’ birth.

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Tiberias in the 1920s, via Wikimedia Commons

Tiberias in the 1920s
from a postcard, via Wikimedia Commons

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