YEHUD (Heb. יְהוּד ,יְהֻד), urban settlement in central Israel, 8 mi. (12 km.) E. of Tel Aviv. On the site, mentioned in Joshua 19:45 as one of the towns of the tribe of Dan, ancient tombs, coffins, and remnants of structures were found. An Arab village on the site, named Yahdiyya, expanded in the 20th century, as a result of the development of the region by Jewish settlement. Earlier, several of the founders of *Petaḥ Tikvah, who had to evacuate that settlement temporarily because of the danger of malaria, stayed at Yehud between 1882 and 1893. In Israel's *War of Independence Yahūdiyya was taken, together with the nearby Lydda Airport, by Israel forces in July 1948 and evacuated by its Arab inhabitants. At the end of the same year the first Jewish settlers arrived, and the place soon absorbed numerous newcomers from various countries, subsequently increasing its population from 3,200 in 1950 to 8,600 in 1970. The original plan to base local settlement on full or auxiliary farming was gradually superseded by urbanization and industrialization, as Yehud became part of the outer ring of the Tel Aviv conurbation. In 1951 Yehud received municipal council status and in 1955 it received city status. Its area is 1.6 sq. mi. (4.1 sq. km.). While a number of inhabitants continued to be employed in other centers of the Tel Aviv region, industry, with 32 local enterprises (motor cars, sweets, knitting, textiles, and other branches), became the principal foundation of Yehud's economy. To a certain degree the town also served as a commercial center for settlements of the vicinity (Neveh Efrayim (Monosson), Savyon, Gannei Yehudah, etc.). In the mid-1990s the population was approximately 17,300, increasing to 22,000 in 2002.
[Shlomo Hasson /
Shaked Gilboa (2nd ed.)]