Vale of Siddim

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Vale of Siddim or Valley of Siddim (Hebrew: עֵ֖מֶק שִׂדִּים‘ê-meq haś-Śid-dîm; "Salt Sea",[1] "sea of the Arabah",[2] "east sea",[3] Arabic: Bahr Lut (the Sea of Lut), "Lake Asphaltitus",[4] "Dead Sea"[5]) is a Hebrew Bible place name mentioned in the Book of Genesis Chapter 14: 'And the vale of Siddim was full of slime pits'.[6]

The text of Genesis explains that during the days of Lot, the vale of Siddim was a river valley where the Battle of Siddim occurred between four Mesopotamian armies and five cities of the Jordan plain.

Siddim is thought to be located on the southern end of the Dead Sea where modern bitumen deposits have been found in respect to the tar pits (asphalt, slime pits) mentioned in Genesis 14:10. This scripture indicates that the valley was filled with many of these pits that the armies of Sodom and Gomorrah fell into during their retreat from Mesopotamian forces. It has been suggested by theologians that the destruction of the cities of the Jordan Plain by divine fire and brimstone may have caused Siddim to become a salt sea, what is now the Dead Sea.[5]


  1. ^ Genesis 14:3
  2. ^ Deuteronomy 3:17
  3. ^ Ezekiel 47:18; Compare Joel 2:20
  4. ^ Josephus
  5. ^ a b Freedman, Myers, and Beck. Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible, 2000, (ISBN 0802824005, ISBN 978-0-8028-2400-4), p. 1218, Siddim, Valley of
  6. ^ Genesis 14:3, 8, 10