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Other transcription(s)
 • Arabic الزبابدة
 • Also spelled al-Zababida (official)
az-Zubabdeh (unofficial)
Zababdeh Community Center
Zababdeh Community Center
Zababdeh is located in the Palestinian territories
Location of Zababdeh within the Palestinian territories
Coordinates: 32°23′07″N 35°19′24″E / 32.38528°N 35.32333°E / 32.38528; 35.32333Coordinates: 32°23′07″N 35°19′24″E / 32.38528°N 35.32333°E / 32.38528; 35.32333
Palestine grid 180/199
Governorate Jenin
 • Type Village council (from 1995)
 • Jurisdiction 5,719 dunams (5.7 km2 or 2.2 sq mi)
Population (2007)[1]
 • Jurisdiction 3,665

Zababdeh or Zababida (Arabic: الزبابدة‎‎) is a Palestinian town in the northern West Bank located 15 kilometres (9.3 miles) southeast of Jenin and 2 kilometres (1.2 miles) from the Arab American University.


Sherds from Middle Bronze Age II, Iron Age I & II, through to the Byzantine era have been found at the site.[2]

Remains of a Frankish bovaria (=farm) has been noted,[3] while sherds from the Mamluk and Ottoman era have also been found.[2]

Ottoman era[edit]

The village was (re-)founded in 1834 by three Christian Greek Orthodox families who purchased the land from Jenin Muslims.[4]

In 1882, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine (SWP) described it as a "moderate sized village at the south edge of the arable plain called Wady es Selhab, supplied by a well on the east, with a low hill covered with brushwood on the south."[5] The Latin Catholic mission established its presence in the village in 1883.[4]

In the 19th century sister Marie-Alphonsine Danil Ghattas lived here.[6]

British Mandate era[edit]

In the 1922 census of Palestine, conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Zababdeh had a population of 482; 64 Muslims and 418 Christians,[7] increasing in the 1931 census to 632; 91 Muslims and 541 Christians, in a total of 134 houses.[8]

In 1945 Zababida had a population of 870; 90 Muslims and 780 Christians,[9] and the jurisdiction of the village was 5,719 dunams of land, according to an official land and population survey.[10] 2,510 dunams were used for plantations and irrigable land, 3,067 dunams for cereals,[11] while 16 dunams were built-up (urban) land.[12]

Jordanian era[edit]

After the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Zababdeh was ruled by the Hashemites of Jordan.


Zababdeh came under Israeli occupation along with the rest of the West Bank after the 1967 Six-Day War.

According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics 2007 census, there were 3,665 residents,[1] of which roughly two-thirds are Christians,[13] and by law the mayor has to be a Christian.[citation needed], divided into Latin, Greek Orthodox, Greek Catholic and Anglican communities. For two decades, from 1974-5 until he was posted to a position as parish priest in Gaza (1995), the village priest was Manuel Musallam, a Fatah activist and native of Birzeit, who developed excellent educational facilities in the village that attracted commuting Muslim students from Jenin.[4] Conflicts with Muslim residents are rare, according to Weaver.[4]


  • Awwad
  • Dawoud
  • Daibes
  • Esaid
  • Kasbasri
  • Khalil Ibrahim
  • Sharqawi
  • Turkman
  • Two Khoury families related only by marriage

In Media[edit]

Zababdeh was featured in an short films Salt of the Earth: Palestinian Christians in the Northern West Bank examining the lives of nine Palestinian Christians living in and around the cities of Jenin and Nablus. Released by Salt Films, Inc., in 2004, the film was produced by Presbyterian missionaries Marthame and Elizabeth Sanders while they lived and worked in the Palestinian Christian village of Zababdeh.[14]

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Zababdeh is twinned with:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b 2007 Locality Population Statistics. Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS).
  2. ^ a b Zertal, 2007, p. 126
  3. ^ Ellenblum, 2003, p. 250
  4. ^ a b c d Alain Epp Weaver, 'The crescent and the cross are the marks on my hands: The performance of Palestinian unity amid political fragmentation,' in Paul S Rowe, John H.A. Dyck, Jens Zimmermann (eds.) Christians and the Middle East Conflict, Routledge 2014 pp.137-151, p.138.
  5. ^ Conder and Kitchener, 1882, SWP II, p. 229
  6. ^ Irving, 2012, p. 248
  7. ^ Barron, 1923, Table IX, Sub-district of Jenin, p. 29
  8. ^ Mills, 1932, p. 71
  9. ^ Department of Statistics, 1945, p. 17
  10. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 55
  11. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 100
  12. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 150
  13. ^ 64% according to [1]: "Zababdeh is one of the larger Villages with significant Christian populations in the north of the West Bank with 2,251 Christians out of 3,500 citizen."
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Welcome to Zababdeh". Retrieved 8 November 2013. 


External links[edit]