Al-Muzayri'a

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This article is about the former Palestinian village in Ramle Sub-district. For other uses, see Mazraa (disambiguation).
al-Muzayri'a
Roman Mausoleum in Mazor, Israel.jpg
Roman mausoleum, converted into a mosque, dedicated to the prophet al-Nabi Yahya ("the Prophet John").
al-Muzayri'a is located in Mandatory Palestine
al-Muzayri'a
al-Muzayri'a
Arabic المُزيرعة
Name meaning El Mezeirảh, The sown lands[1]
Also spelled al-Muzeiri'a
Subdistrict Ramle
Coordinates 32°02′56.89″N 34°56′58.39″E / 32.0491361°N 34.9495528°E / 32.0491361; 34.9495528Coordinates: 32°02′56.89″N 34°56′58.39″E / 32.0491361°N 34.9495528°E / 32.0491361; 34.9495528
Palestine grid 145/161
Population 1,160[2][3] (1945)
Area 10,822[2] dunams
Date of depopulation 12 July 1948[4]
Cause(s) of depopulation Military assault by Yishuv forces
Current localities Mazor[5][6] Nechalim[6]

Al-Muzayri'a (Arabic: المُزيرعة‎‎) was a Palestinian village in the Ramle Subdistrict. It was depopulated in 1948.

Location[edit]

Al-Muzayri'a was located 15 kilometers (9.3 mi) north-northeast of al-Ramla, on limestone hill, overlooking the coastal plain. A wadi ran along its southern part, and separated it from the village of Qula. The village was about 1 km east of the al-Ramla-Haifa railway line. It was also located to the east of the al-Ramla-Jaffa highway.[6]

History[edit]

The location has a long history of habitation. A Roman mausoleum, still standing, (about 1 km south of the village site) was converted into a mosque dedicated to a prophet, al-Nabi Yahya ("the Prophet John").[when?] About 1 km northeast of the village was Khirbat Zikhrin, a Roman-Byzantine site that was inhabited during Mamluk and Ottoman periods. The place has been excavated since 1982.[6]

Ottoman era[edit]

In 1596, Al-Muzayri'a was part of the Ottoman Empire, nahiya (subdistrict) of Jabel Qubal under the liwa' (district) of Nablus with a population of thirty-nine. It paid taxes on a number of crops, including wheat, barley, and olives, as well as goats, and beehives.[7]

The village was possibly abandoned during the 17th century, only to be reoccupied in the 18th century by a family from Dayr Ghassana, named al-Rumayh.[6] A. Mansell mentioned passing the village in the early 1860s.[8]

The French explorer Victor Guérin passed by in 1870, and described the village as sitting on a stony hill, he noted that its houses appeared small.[9] An Ottoman village list of about the same year showed that “Mezari” had 68 houses and a population of 234, though the population count included only men. It also noted “a very old temple”.[10]

In 1882, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine described it as "an adobe village on the edge of the hills, near Qula."[11]

British Mandate era[edit]

Mihrab, pointing towards Mecca, in the Roman Mausoleum

In the 1922 census of Palestine, conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Muzaira'a had a population of 578, all Muslims,[12] increasing in the 1931 census to 780, still all Muslims, in a total of 186 houses.[13]

In 1919, a school for boys was founded in the village. By 1945, it had become a full-fledged elementary school, with 207 students, including children of the neighboring villages. 35 dunums of land was attached to the school. A school for girls was founded in 1945, and had an initial enrollment of 78 students.[6]

In 1944/45, the village had a population of 1,160, all Muslim,[3] and the total land area was 10,822 dunams.[2] A total of 953 dunums of village land was used for citrus and bananas, 5,895 dunums were used for cereals, 35 dunums were irrigated or used for orchards,[6][14] while 25 dunams were classified as built-up urban areas.[15]

1948 and aftermath[edit]

Al-Muzayri'a was located in the territory allotted to the Arab state under the 1947 UN Partition Plan.[16]

The Israeli moshav of Nehalim was founded in 1949 on the northwestern part of former village land. The moshav of Mazor was founded the same year on the western part of former village land.[6]

The Palestinian historian Walid Khalidi, described the place in 1992: "The site is largely forested. While a few houses remain, most have been reduced to rubble. Cacti and stone terraces are visible on the site."[6]

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Palmer, 1881, p. 239
  2. ^ a b c Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 67
  3. ^ a b Department of Statistics, p. 30
  4. ^ Morris, 2004, p. xviii, village 210
  5. ^ Morris, 2004, p xxii, settlement # 98
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i Khalidi, 1992, p. 399
  7. ^ Hütteroth and Abdulfattah, 1977, p. 136. Quoted in Khalidi, 1992, p. 399
  8. ^ Mansell, 1863, p.39. Cited in Khalidi, 1992, p.399
  9. ^ Guérin, 1875, p. 390
  10. ^ Socin, 1879, p. 157
  11. ^ Conder and Kitchener, 1882, SWP II, p. 297
  12. ^ Barron, 1923, Table VII, Sub-district of Ramleh, p. 22
  13. ^ Mills, 1932, p. 22.
  14. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 116
  15. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 166
  16. ^ "Map of UN Partition Plan". United Nations. Archived from the original on 7 August 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-06. 

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]