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  • רָמָה, ראמה
  • الرامه
Hebrew transcription(s)
 • ISO 259Ráma
 • Also spelledRame (official)
al-Rama (unofficial)
Rameh is located in Northwest Israel
Rameh is located in Israel
Coordinates: 32°56′21″N 35°22′02″E / 32.93917°N 35.36722°E / 32.93917; 35.36722Coordinates: 32°56′21″N 35°22′02″E / 32.93917°N 35.36722°E / 32.93917; 35.36722
Grid position184/260 PAL
 • TypeLocal council (from 2005)
 • Total6,118 dunams (6.118 km2 or 2.362 sq mi)
 • Total7,650
 • Density1,300/km2 (3,200/sq mi)
Name meaning"Lofty" or "Elevated"[2]

Rameh (Arabic: الرامة‎; Hebrew: רָמָה; also ar-Rame or ar-Rama) is an Arab town in the Northern District of Israel. Located east of Nahef and Karmiel, in 2018 it had a population of 7,650.[1]


Edward Robinson identifies Rameh with the ancient Ramah of Asher (Joshua 19:29), citing its location and ancient sarcophagi discovered on a hill outside the village as evidence.[3]

The village is situated on an ancient site, atop a hill at the edge of Beit HaKerem Valley. To the east are remains of Roman baths, dating to the 2nd to 4th century, and oil presses from the same period. South and southeast are remains of buildings foundations, including an Aramaic inscription on a lintel, which indicate a 3rd to 4th century synagogue. To the northeast of the Roman bath are the remains of a large basilica. This was excavated in 1972, and very large column bases were found, together with polychrome mosaics representing fauna and flora.[4]

Many remains of pottery vessels dated to the Late Roman period (fourth–fifth centuries CE) have also been found,[5] together with building remains from the Byzantine period.[6] Rameh was a major town during the rule of the Crusaders.[citation needed]

Ottoman era[edit]

In 1517, Rameh was with the rest of Palestine incorporated into the Ottoman Empire after it was captured from the Mamluks, and by 1596, it was a village under the administration of the nahiya ("subdistrict") of Akka, part of Safad Sanjak, with a population of 96 households, all Muslim. It paid taxes on silk spinning (dulab harir),[7] goats, beehives, and a press that was used for processing either olives or grapes, in addition to paying a fixed, or lump sum; a total 21,986 akçe. Half of the revenue went to a waqf.[8][9]

A map from Napoleon's invasion of 1799 by Pierre Jacotin showed the place, named as "Ramah",[10] while in 1838, er Rameh was noted as Christian and Druze village in the Esh-Shagur district, located between Safad, Acca and Tiberias.[11][12]

Victor Guérin visited the village in 1875, and found it to have 800 inhabitants, half Christian and half Druze.[13]

In 1881 the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine (SWP) described it as "a village, built of stone, of good materials, containing a Greek chapel and about 600 Christians and 500 Druzes; it is situated in plains, with large olive-groves, gardens and vineyards; five perennial springs near the village, and several cisterns in it."[14]

A population list from about 1887 showed that er Rameh had about 1,125 inhabitants; 425 Druze, 125 Greek Catholic Christians and 575 Muslims.[15]

British Mandate era[edit]

It was one of the largest villages in the Galilee during the period of Ottoman Empire control. In 1923, Rameh became the first village in Palestine to receive self-governing status granted by the British Mandate and had the largest olive orchards in the area. It was granted permission to self-govern through a village council.[16]

In the 1922 census of Palestine conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Al Rameh had a total population 847; 28 Muslims, 624 Christians, and 195 Druze.[17] Of the Christians, 474 were Orthodox, 47 Catholics, 102 Greek Catholic (Melchite) and 1 Maronite.[18] This had increased in the 1931 census of Palestine, when Er Rama had 254 houses, with a total population of 1142. Of these, 70 were Muslim, 746 Christians, and 326 Druze.[19]

In the 1945 statistics Er Rama had a population of 1,690; 90 Muslims, 1,160 Christians and 440 "others"(=Druze),[20] with 24,516 dunams of land, according to an official land and population survey.[21] Of this, 8,310 dunams were plantations and irrigable land, 3,078 used for cereals,[22] while 56 dunams were built-up land.[23]

State of Israel[edit]

It was captured by Haganah forces in 1948, becoming a part of Israel, and later achieving local council status in 1954.[citation needed]


53% of the residents of Rameh are Christian,[24] 31% are Druze[25] and 16% are Muslim.

Notable residents[edit]

In alphabetical order by surname, article excluded:

  • Mira Awad (born 1975) - singer, actress, and songwriter
  • Angelina Fares (born 1989) - gymnast, 2007 Miss Israel beauty pageant contestant and subject of "Lady Kul El-Arab" documentary film; born in Rameh
  • Basel Ghattas (born 1956) - politician, Balad party, member of the Knesset (2013–2015-...)
  • Archbishop Theodosios (Hanna) of Sebastia (born 1965) - clergyman, Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem
  • Hanna Mwais (1913–1981) - politician, member of the Knesset for Hadash (1977-1981)
  • Elias Nakhleh (1913-1990) - politician, member of the Knesset (1959-1974)
  • Samih al-Qasim (1939-2014) - poet of Palestinian Druze descent
  • Imad Sheiban (born 1951 ): world renowned intervention cardiologist, associate professor of Cardiology

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Population in the Localities 2018" (XLS). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 25 August 2019. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  2. ^ Palmer, 1881, p. 92
  3. ^ Robinson, 1856, pp. 64-65.
  4. ^ Dauphin, 1998, p. 705
  5. ^ Cinamon, 2009, Er-Rama
  6. ^ Dalali-Amos, 2011, Er-Rama
  7. ^ Rhode, 1979, p. 145 for the silk tax, and p. 5 for the date.
  8. ^ Hütteroth and Abdulfattah, 1977, p. 190
  9. ^ Note that Rhode, 1979, p. 6 writes that the register that Hütteroth and Abdulfattah studied from the Safad-district was not from 1595/6, but from 1548/9
  10. ^ Karmon, 1960, p. 166
  11. ^ Robinson and Smith, 1841, vol. 3, 2nd appendix, p. 133
  12. ^ Robinson and Smith, 1841, vol. 3,p. 250
  13. ^ Guérin, 1880, p. 453
  14. ^ Conder and Kitchener, 1881, p. 204
  15. ^ Schumacher, 1888, p. 174
  16. ^ Survey of Palestine British Mandate of Palestine. Vol. 1, p.132.
  17. ^ Barron, 1923, Table XI, Sub-district of Acre, p. 36
  18. ^ Barron, 1923, Table XVI, p. 50
  19. ^ Mills, 1932, p. 102
  20. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics, 1945, p. 4
  21. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 41
  22. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 81
  23. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 131
  24. ^ Ettinger, Yair (2003-05-13). "Urban Plan Seen as Racist Move in Arab Sector". Haaretz. Retrieved 2019-05-09.
  25. ^ "The Druze population in Israel - a collection of data on the occasion of the Prophet Shuaib holiday" (PDF). CBS - Israel. Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. April 17, 2019. Retrieved 2019-05-08.


External links[edit]