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Perea or Peraea (Greek: Περαία, "the country beyond"), was the portion of the kingdom of Herod the Great occupying the eastern side of the Jordan River valley, from about one third the way down from the Sea of Galilee to about one third the way down the eastern shore of the Dead Sea; it did not extend too far to the east. Traditionally, its limits have been considered to be the eastern bank of the Jordan River between the rivers Arnon (Wadi Mujib) in the south and Hieromax (Yarmouk River) in the north.  Herod the Great's kingdom was divided by the Romans into a tetrarchy, of which Herod Antipas received both Perea and Galilee.
Perea was the area inhabited by the Israelite Tribes Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh. New Testament commentators speak of Jesus' "Perean Ministry", beginning with his departure from Galilee (Matt 19:1; Mark 10:1) and ending with the anointing by Mary in Bethany (Matt 26) or his journey towards Jerusalem commencing from Mark 10:32.
Pliny the Elder
Beyond Idumaea and Samaria stretches the wide expanse of Judaea. The part of Judaea adjoining Syria is called Galilee, and that next to Arabia and Egypt Peraea. Peraea is covered with rugged mountains, and is separated from the other parts of Judaea by the river Jordan (in the original Latin: "Supra Idumaeam et Samariam Iudaea longe lateque funditur. pars eius Syriae iuncta Galilaea vocatur, Arabiae vero et Aegypto proxima Peraea, asperis dispersa montibus et a ceteris Iudaeis Iordane amne discreta.")
Other Sites Named Perea
The Christian Armenians who were deported from Armenia and forcibly settled in the New Julfa/Isfahan region of Iran named a major village "Perea" in honor of the important significance of Perea as the resting place of John the Baptist.
Hasmonean Kingdom Established 167 BCE (Judas Maccabeus)
Hasmonean Kingdom Collapse 67 BCE (Hyrcanus II)
- Perea entry in historical sourcebook by Mahlon H. Smith
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