Talk:Mamre

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19th cent travel lit[edit]

has some beautiful descriptions of the site, and we should cull a florilegium of them for a section. Nishidani (talk) 20:04, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

Something odd about the use of 'the Palestinians' in 5th century Greek, so checked another translation[edit]

Indeed, this text is phrased more in line with Greek idiom, and does not use that expression:-

CHAP. IV. WHAT CONSTANTINE THE GREAT EFFECTED ABOUT THE OAK IN MAMRE; HE ALSO BUILT A TEMPLE. I CONSIDER it necessary to detail the proceedings of Constantine in relation to what is called the oak of Mature. This place is now called Terebinthus, and is about fifteen stadia distant from Hebron, which lies to the south, but is two hundred and fifty stadia distant from Jerusalem. It is recorded that here the Son of God appeared to Abraham, with two angels, who had been sent against Sodom, and foretold the birth of his son. Here the inhabitants of the country and of the regions round Palestine the Phoenicians, and the Arabians, assemble annually during the summer season to keep a brilliant feast; and many others, both buyers and sellers, resort thither on account of the fair. Indeed, this feast is diligently frequented by all nations: by the Jews, because they boast of their descent from the patriarch Abraham; by the Pagans, because angels there appeared to men; and by Christians, because He who for the salvation of mankind was born of a virgin, afterwards manifested Himself there to a godly man. This place was moreover honored fit-tingly with religious exercises. Here some prayed to the God of all; some called upon the angels, poured out wine, burnt incense, or offered an ox, or he-goat, a sheep, or a cock. Each one made some beautiful product of his labor, and after carefully husbanding it through the entire year, he offered it according to promise as provision for that feast, both for himself and his dependents. And either from honor to the place, or from fear of Divine wrath, they all abstained from coming near their wives, although during the feast these were more than ordinarily studious of their beauty and adornment. Nor, if they chanced to appear and to take part in the public processions, did they act at all licentiously. Nor did they behave imprudently in any other respect, although the tents were contiguous to each other, and they all lay promiscuously together. The place is open country, and arable, and without houses, with the exception of the buildings around Abraham's old oak and the well he prepared. No one during the time of the feast drew water from that well; for according to Pagan usage, some placed burning lamps near it; some poured out wine, or cast in cakes; and others, coins, myrrh, or incense. Hence, as I suppose, the water was rendered useless by commixture with the things cast into it. Once whilst these customs were being celebrated by the Pagans, after the aforesaid manner, and as was the established usage with hilarity, the mother-in-law of Constantine was present for prayer, and apprised the emperor of what was being done. On receiving this information, he rebuked the bishops of Palestine in no measured terms, because they had neglected their duty, and had permitted a holy place to be defiled by impure libations and sacrifices; and he expressed his godly censure in an epistle which he wrote on the subject to Macarius, bishop of Jerusalem, to Eusebius Pamphilus, 22/174 and to the bishops of Palestine. He commanded these bishops to hold a conference on this subject with the Phoenician bishops, and issue directions for the demolition, from the foundations, of the altar formerly erected there, the destruction of the carved images by fire, and the erection of a church worthy of so ancient and so holy a place. The emperor finally enjoined, that no libations or sacrifices should be offered on the spot, but that it should be exclusively devoted to the worship of God according to the law of the Church; and that if any attempt should be made to restore the former rites, the bishops were to inform against the delinquent, in order that he might be subjected to the greatest punishment. The governors and priests of Christ strictly enforced the injunctions contained in the emperor's letter.'Nishidani (talk) 21:41, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

Legends re the angels and the tree near the well[edit]

‘Among the oaks of Mamre, at a distance from there, dwelt an old man, who was near death when Rabbi Petachia arrived there, and he told his son to show Rabbi Petachia the tree under which the angels rested. He also showed him a fine olive-tree cleft into three parts with a stone in the middle. They have a tradition that when the angels sat down the tree was cleft into three parts, each resting under one part whilst sitting on the stone. The fruits of the tree are very sweet.' Elkan N. Adler,Jewish Travellers from 9th to 18th Century, Asian Educational Services, 1995 p.90

Removed but sourced. Chech[edit]

The Abraham's angel visitation being revered by the Eastern Orthodox Christians as a pre-figurement of the new testament Holy Trinity.[1] The Constantine church appears on the Madaba Map.Nishidani (talk) 21:17, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

  1. ^ Majeska, George P. (1984) Russian Travelers to Constantinople in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries Dumbarton Oaks, ISBN 0-88402-101-7 p 229

Mamre in South Africa[edit]

A new entry on the historically important Moravian Mission of Mamre, in South Africa (Province of the Western Cape) (1806) is needed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 105.226.60.68 (talk) 07:28, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

identification[edit]

This article seems to be entirely lacking when it comes to the identification of the site. How old is the tradition that this place is the Mamre of the Bible? Zerotalk 11:25, 20 March 2016 (UTC)

Pictures[edit]

The Tristram image is most probably the so-called "Oak of Mamre", which is NOT at Mamre, but more than halfway towards historical Hebron, and now within modern Hebron. Mamre is farther north of Hebron.

Madaba Map: there is only a fraction of the name, "MAM", still visible on the mosaic, at the right margin of what is left of it and right next to the modern pillar. Cheers, Arminden (talk) 16:01, 5 December 2016 (UTC)

Removed unsourced Canaanite connection[edit]

@Nishidani and Zero0000: I took out this part of the lead:

"Canaanite cultic shrine dedicated to the supreme, sky god El of the ancient Canaanite religion."

a) unsourced; b) the article doesn't explain this, either; c) not what it's most famous for.

If you have any sources for this, and it's not just put together by an editor's presumptions (very old means Canaanite; open to the sky means El), I'd love to see them and this should be put back in, but probably not in the lead (it can hardly be hard facts, and it's not what Mamre is best known for). Cheers, Arminden (talk) 08:57, 6 December 2016 (UTC)

Good move. It almost certainly was a Canaanite/Amorite cult centre. The difficulty consists in winnowing out the traditional lore hidden behind the quite late Hebrew theological re-use of it. R. E. Clements can be cited for the Canaanite-El equation, if you want. But, like 99% of the ancient history of that area, such references allude to reconstructive theories, reasonable but speculative. That it was, in all likelihood, pre-monotheistic is suggested by the cult of a primordial tree of which traces remain, and, given the many other spoors of remnant evidence indicating Hebron and its environs had an axis mundi creational cosmology before it was appropriated by 'God-fearers', the probability is that the El cult usurped this and recast the whole story as God-centered, and this in turn was spun by the Judean sacerdotal class into a narrative in which El/Yahweh made a covenant turning over the place to the Hebrews. If that occurred, the switch would have occurred late, perhaps under the Hasmoneans, as the Judeans, in strife with the Samaritans, started shifting the pristine Shechem traditions down to their own territory, as you can see in the overlap between the Joseph and patriarchal burial stories. I'm a bit busy and can't quite get the time off to look into my old files or search about - the muddle in ancient sources is turbidly intimdating. Keep up the good work.Nishidani (talk) 13:18, 6 December 2016 (UTC)