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GATH-HEPHER (Heb. גַּת חֵפֶר), a town on the border of the territory of *Zebulun, between *Japhia and Eth-Kazin (Josh. 19:13). It is referred to as the birthplace of the prophet *Jonah (ii Kings 14:25). The biblical site has been identified with Khirbat al-Zurraʿ (now called Tel Gath Hepher), near the Arab village of Mashhad, 2½ mi. (4 km.) southeast of *Sepphoris. An examination of the tell has revealed Iron Age pottery on its surface. A tomb in the village traditionally that of Jonah (al-Nabī Yūnis) attests the existence of a local tradition which was already noted by Jerome in the preface to his Latin commentary on the Book of Jonah.


Albright, in: basor, 35 (1929), 8; em, s.v.

[Michael Avi-Yonah]