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MISREPHOTH-MAIM (Heb. מִשְׂרְפוֹת מַיִם), one of the farthest limits of the flight of the Canaanites after defeat by the waters of Merom (Josh. 11:8) and a boundary of the Sidonians (Josh. 13:6). Some scholars suggest reading Misrefot mi-Yam ("at the sea," i.e., on the west). It may be mentioned in the Egyptian Execration texts, dating to approximately 1800 b.c.e., as ʾisrpʾi, which appears beside Achsaph. Abel and others identified it with Khirbat al-Mushayrifa, near Rosh ha-Nikrah. This site was partly excavated in 1951 by Miriam Tadmor and M. Prausnitz, and remains dating to the early Bronze Age, including a wall of early Bronze ii–iii, and to middle Bronze Age I, were uncovered. However, the site did not yield remains of the late Bronze Age, which corresponds to the time of the biblical descriptions. Recently, Aharoni suggested that it is not the name of a city, but a definition of the border of Sidon, which may be identified with the outlet of the Litani River.


Prausnitz, in: Atiqot, 1 (1955), 139ff.; Tadmor and Prausnitz, ibid., 2 (1959), 72ff.; Abel, Géog, 2 (1938), 388; Aharoni, Land, index; M. Noth, Das Buch Josua (1938), 43.

[Michael Avi-Yonah]

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