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For other uses, see Bethany (disambiguation).
The Greek Orthodox Church in Bethany, near the traditional tomb of Lazarus of Bethany

Bethany, in the Bible, was the name of a village near Jerusalem—see Bethany (biblical village)—mentioned in the New Testament as the home of the siblings Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, and, according to the Gospel of John, the site of a miracle in which Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. This village is commonly identified with the present-day West Bank city of al-Eizariya ("place of Lazarus"), located about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) east of Jerusalem on the south-eastern slope of the Mount of Olives. During the Crusades, al-Eizariya was still referred to as Bethany by Christians.

The Raising of Lazarus episode, shortly before Jesus enters Jerusalem for the last time, takes place in Bethany.[1] Bethany near the River Jordan in John 1:28 might refer to a town further north in Perea, i.e. Bethabara;[2] or it might refer to the more northerly territory of Batanaea.[3]

In the winter, temperatures in Bethany can drop below zero, but summer sees temperatures as high as 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit).[citation needed] Many places are named for the biblical village of Bethany. Bethany is also used as a female given name. It is of Aramaic origin, and means "house of dates".[4]


  1. ^ Moloney, Francis J., Daniel J. Harrington (1998). The Gospel of John. Liturgical Press. ISBN 0814658067. page 325.
  2. ^ Sloyan, Gerard Stephen (1987). John. ISBN 0-8042-3125-7. page 11.
  3. ^ Carson, D. A. (1991). Gospel According to John. ISBN 978-0851117492. pages 146–147.
  4. ^ Easton's Bible Dictionary