Skip to main content



BEEROTH (Heb. בְּאֵרוֹת; "wells"), one of the Gibeonite cities mentioned as part of a confederacy together with Gibeon, Chephirah, and Kiriath-Jearim (Josh. 9:17). Beeroth is listed with the cities of Benjamin (Josh. 18:25); part of its population had previously fled to Gittaim (ii Sam. 4:3). One of David's heroes came from Beeroth (ii Sam. 23:37; i Chron. 11:39), as did the assassins of Ish-Bosheth (ii Sam. 4:2). The town was resettled after the return from Babylon (Ezra 2:25; Neh. 7:29). Birea, where Bacchides encamped in 161 b.c.e. before the battle with Judah Maccabee (i Macc. 9:4), has been identified with the biblical locality. Beeroth is commonly identified with the Arab town al-Bīra near Ramallah, 9 mi. (14 km.) north of Jerusalem; Bronze Age remains have been found nearby, at Ra's al-Taḥūn. Several attempts to identify Beeroth with Tell al-Naṣb (Mizpeh?) or al-Jib (Gibeon) have been disproved by recent excavations. It has been proposed to locate Beeroth at Nebi Samwil, 1 mi. (1½ km.) south of el-Jib. Although this identification has not yet been confirmed by archaeological findings, it is strengthened by the statement of Eusebius (Onom. 48:9) that a village with this name was situated 7 mi. from Jerusalem on the road to Nikopolis (Emmaus; but according to Jerome, on the road to Neapoli, i.e., Shechem), and its possible appearance on the *Madaba Map.


D.A. Alt, in: zdpv, 69 (1953), 1–29; K. Elliger, ibid., 73 (1957), 125–32; idem, in: Mélanges… A. Robert (1957), 82–94; em, 2 (1965), 8–9; Albright, in: aasor, 4 (1924), 102–11; Z. Kallai, in: Eretz Israel, 3 (1954), 111–5.

[Michael Avi-Yonah]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Beeroth." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . 22 Sep. 2018 <>.

"Beeroth." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . (September 22, 2018).

"Beeroth." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved September 22, 2018 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.