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SHARUHEN (Heb. שָׁרוּחֶן), city in the territory of the tribe of Simeon (Josh. 19:6); in the Septuagint, the name is translated as "their fields" (sedoteihem). The parallel passage in Joshua 15:32 has Shilhim, and that in i Chronicles 4:31 has Shaaraim. Opinions are divided between these being variations of the same name or different places. In Egyptian sources, Sharuhen appears as a Hyksos stronghold besieged for three years by the army of Ahmose I after the expulsion of the Hyksos from Egypt. It remained an Egyptian fortress under Thutmosis iii. It was evidently the starting point of Shishak's Negev campaign (no. 125 in his list of Canaanite cities). These data have led Albright to identify Sharuhen with Tell al-Fāriʿa (present-day Tel Sharuhen), an ancient mound on the Besor River, about 18½ mi. (30 km.) west of Beer-Sheba. Between 1927–1929 it was excavated by *Petrie, who identified it with Beth-Pelet. Remains include a Hyksos fortification; strata of the Philistine, Israelite, and Persian periods; Hyksos and Philistine tombs; Jewish coins; and a Roman fort.


F. Petrie, Beth Pelet (1930); Albright, in: basor, 33 (1929), 7; Alt, in: jpos, 15 (1935), 310ff.; Abel, Geog, 2 (1938), 451; Aharoni, Land, index.

[Michael Avi-Yonah]