the Fourth Week of Lent
Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature
(Hebrews Ataroth', עֲטָרוֹת , crowns; Sept. Ἀταρώθ ), the name of several places in Palestine.
1. A city east of Jordan, not far from Gilead, and in the vicinity of Dibon, Jazer, and Aroer, in a fertile grazing district (Numbers 32:3), rebuilt by the Gadites (Numbers 32:34), although it must have lain within the tribe of Reuben, probably on the slope of the hill still retaining the name Attarus (Burckhardt, 2, 630), where there is a river having the same name (Van de Velde, Memoir, p. 220).
2. A city on the border of Ephraim and Benjamin, between Janohah and Naarath, toward Jericho (Joshua 16:7), and also between Archi and Japhleti (Joshua 16:2). Professor Robinson discovered a place by the name of Atara, perhaps identical with this, now a large village on the summit of a hill, about six miles N. by W. of Bethel (Researches, 3, 80). The ruins of another place by the same name, nearer Jerusalem on the north, have also been noticed (ibid. 3, Appendix, p. 122), situated at both ends of a defile, leading into the Wady Atara, which extends a distance of 2000 yards, about halfway between Beeroth and Mizpah (De Saulcy, 1, 101; 2, 257). This locality agrees better with the Ataroth of Ephraim than the other (see Schwarz, Palest. p. 146). The Ataroth (Ἀταρούθ ) of Eusebius (Onomast. s.v.) lay four miles north of Samaria. This Ataroth is also called "‘ ATAROTH-ADDAR" or "ATAROTH-ADAR" (Hebrews Atroth' Addar', עִטְרוֹת אִדָּר, crowns of Addar [greatness]; Sept. Ἀταρὼθ Ἀδάρ and Ἀθάρ ) in Joshua 16:5; Joshua 18:13; where, as well as above, it is located between Bethel and Beth-horon (see Schwarz, Palest. p. 124).
3. "ATAROTH [OF] THE HOUSE OF JOAB" (Hebrews Atroth' Beyth Yoab, עִטְרוֹת בֵּית יוֹאָב, crowns of the house of Joab; Sept. Ἀταρὼθ οἴκου Ι᾿ωβάβ . v.r. Ι᾿ωάβ ), a city (nominally) in the tribe of Judah, founded by the descendants of Salma (1 Chronicles 2:54). Schwarz (Palest. p. 143) identifies it with Latrum (for el-Atron), on the road from Jerusalem to Jaffa, west of Saris, which (although slightly beyond the ancient bounds of Judah) appears plausible, as the well Ayub in the immediate vicinity may be a relic of the epithet here applied distinctively to this place.
4. ATAROTH-SHOPHAN (Hebrews Atroth' Shophan', עִטְרוֹת שׁוֹפָן, crowns of Shophan [hiding]; Sept. merely Σοφάρ ), another city (nominally) of the tribe of Gad, mentioned in connection with No. 1 (Numbers 32:35). The English version overlooks the distinction evidently intended by the suffixed word, translating "Atroth, Shophan," as if two places were thus denoted. The associated names would appear to indicate a locality not far from the border between Gad and Reuben (probably, however, within the latter), perhaps at the head of Wady Eshteh, near Merj-Ekkeh (Robinson's Milap), as the place was famous for pasturage.
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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Ataroth'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​a/ataroth.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.