- See Tira for other sites with similar names.
|Name meaning||The Fortress|
|Also spelled||Tirat al-Lawz|
|Date of depopulation||16 July 1948|
|Cause(s) of depopulation||Military assault by Yishuv forces|
|Current localities||HaHotrim, Tirat Carmel, Megadim, Kefar Gallim, Beyt Tzvi|
The Crusaders called al-Tira, St. Yohan de Tire, and in the thirteenth century the village contained a Greek Orthodox abbey of St. John the Baptist. In 1283 it was mentioned as part of the domain of the Crusaders, according to the hudna between the Crusaders and the Mamluk sultan Qalawun.
In 1596, al-Tira was a village with a population of 286 under the administrative jurisdiction of the nahiya ("subdistrict") of Shafa, part of Sanjak Lajjun of the Ottoman Empire. It paid taxes on a number of agricultural products, including wheat, goats, beehives, and vineyards,
Victor Guérin visited in 1870, “I first examined a small mosque, which appears to have been formerly a Christian church. Aligned from west to east it has only a single nave and is terminated towards the east by an apse. One enters through a rectangular door crowned by a fine monolithic lintel. This church, which has been constructed with very regular ashlars, is covered by slightly pointed vaults, above which there is a flat terrace roof.”
After the heavy conscription imposed by the Ottomans in 1872, there was a decline in the village's prosperity, but it subsequently recovered.
British Mandate era
By 1945, its 5,240 Muslims and 30 Christians shared two elementary schools, one for boys, the other for girls. Its economy was based on the cultivation of grain, vegetables and fruit, watered with the natural springs of the village. In 1943, al-Tira produced more olives and oil than any other village in the Haifa District. The abundance of almond trees in al-Tira gave rise to the village's nickname, Tirat al-Lawz ("Tira of the almonds").
1948 and later
Tira was lightly attacked by the Haganah on the night of 21–22 April 1948 "to prevent assistance being given to the Haifa Arabs", according to a British report. This caused an evacuation of some women and children of the village, according to Haganah military sources. At dawn on April 25, the Haganah mortared Tira, and in the early hours of 26 April it launched a strong attack on the village, with the apparent aim of conquest, using mortars and machine guns. An infantry company reached the eastern outskirts of the village and conquered positions on the Carmel slopes overlooking the village, but was apparently halted by fire from British units. The village's non-combat population was then evacuated by the British, leaving several hundred armed men to defend it. It fell to Israeli forces in July.
Tira was first settled with Jewish immigrants in February 1949; by April it contained 2,000 settlers.
The Palestinian historian Walid Khalidi described the village remains in 1992: "The village site is partly occupied by an Israeli settlement. Some of the houses, such as one belonging to 'Irsan al-Dhib, remain standing. The cemetery is unkempt and there are several broken gravestones. The remains of two shrines are visible and the school is used by Israeli students, both Arab and Jewish. There are forests and some residential houses in the mountainous part of the surrounding land."
Al-Tira had two mosques, named the Old and the New. The Old mosque was originally a church, and was already out of use by 1932. The New mosque appears to be still standing, but now converted into a synagogue. The age of the New Mosque is not agreed upon; Pringle states that it is the mosque built by Assaf in 1579 C.E. However, Petersen, who inspected it in 1994, reports that this is incorrect, and that an inscription set in an arched recess by the door to what was the entrance to the prayer hall records, in provincial nasskhi script, the construction of the mosque to Ishaq ibn Amir in 687 H. (1288-1289 CE)
- Palmer, 1881, p. 117
- Morris, 2004, p. xviii, village #173. Also provides cause of depopulation.
- Morris, 2004, p. xx, settlement #8.
- Khalidi, 1992, p. 198.
- "Welcome to al-Tira". Palestine Remembered. Retrieved 2007-12-09.
- Rami Nashashibi (1996). "Destroyed Palestinian Villages: al-Tira". Center for Research and Documentation of Palestinian Society. Retrieved 2007-12-09.
- Khalidi, 1992, p. 195
- Pringle, 1998, pp. 370-1
- Also cited in Petersen, 2001, p. 306
- al-Qalqashandi version of the hudna, referred in Barag, 1979, p. 208, no. H2
- Heyd, 1960, 110 n.4. Cited in Petersen, 2001, p. 306
- Khalidi, 1992, p.196.
- Guérin, 1875, pp. 282-3
- Conder and Kitchener, 1881, SWP I, p.285. Quoted in Khalidi, 1992, p.196
- Morris, 2004, p. 208-209
- Golan, 2001; Spatial Transformation (In Hebrew). Cited in Morris, 2004, p. 395
- Petersen, 2001, p. 306
- Barag, Dan (1979). "A new source concerning the ultimate borders of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem". Israel Exploration Journal 29: 197–217.
- Barron, J. B., ed. (1923). Palestine: Report and General Abstracts of the Census of 1922. Government of Palestine.
- Conder, Claude Reignier; Kitchener, Herbert H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine: Memoirs of the Topography, Orography, Hydrography, and Archaeology 1. London: Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Guérin, Victor (1875). Description Géographique Historique et Archéologique de la Palestine (in French). 2: Samarie, pt. 2. Paris: L'Imprimerie Nationale.
- Heyd, Uriel (1960): Ottoman Documents on Palestine, 1552-1615, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Cited in Petersen (2001)
- Khalidi, Walid (1992). All That Remains: The Palestinian Villages Occupied and Depopulated by Israel in 1948. Washington D.C.: Institute for Palestine Studies. ISBN 0-88728-224-5.
- Mills, E., ed. (1932). Census of Palestine 1931. Population of Villages, Towns and Administrative Areas. Jerusalem: Government of Palestine.
- Morris, Benny (2004). The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-81120-1.
- Mülinen, Egbert Friedrich von, 1908, Beiträge zur Kenntnis des Karmels "Separateabdruck aus der Zeitschrift des Deutschen Palëstina-Vereins Band XXX (1907) Seite 117-207 und Band XXXI (1908) Seite 1-258." ("Et-Tire": p. 142 ff. )
- Palmer, E. H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine: Arabic and English Name Lists Collected During the Survey by Lieutenants Conder and Kitchener, R. E. Transliterated and Explained by E.H. Palmer. Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Petersen, Andrew (2001). A Gazetteer of Buildings in Muslim Palestine (British Academy Monographs in Archaeology) 1. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-727011-0.
- Pringle, Denys (1998). The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: L-Z (exluding Tyre) II. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0 521 39037 0. Also cited in Petersen (2001)
- Rey, Emmanuel Guillaume (1883). Les colonies franques de Syrie aux XIIme et XIIIme siècles (in French). Paris: A. Picard. (p. 432)
- Welcome to al-Tira
- SWP map V, IAA
- SWP map 5, Wikimedia commons
- al-Tira from the Khalil Sakakini Cultural Center
- Rami Nashashibi (1996): al-Tira, Center for Research and Documentation of Palestinian Society.