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ZANOAH (Heb. זָנוֹחַ), name of two biblical cities in Judah.

(1) A town "in the Lowland" near Zorah, Jarmuth, and Adullam (Josh. 15:34). It is mentioned in the list of Judean cities with Adullam and Lachish (Neh. 11:30). The inhabitants of Zanoah and their leader Hanun were among those who rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem in Nehemiah's time (Neh. 3:13), and it may be conjectured, therefore, that Zanoah was a center of secondary rank in its district, probably that of Keilah. In the time of Eusebius (Onom. 92:13), Zanoah was a village within the boundaries of Eleutheropolis (Bet Guvrin) on the way to Ailia (Jerusalem). The site is identified with Khirbat Zanū ʿ between Beth-Shemesh and the valley of Elah, where pottery of the Late Bronze and Iron ii ages, as well as remains from later periods, was found. According to the Mishnah, the quality of the fine flour of Zanua was unsurpassed (Men. 8:1; corrected Mss.).

(2) A Judean city in the mountain region, in the same district as Maon, Carmel, Ziph, and Juttah (Josh. 15:56). Therefore, it was probably to the S.E. of Hebron, but the exact site is unknown.

An agricultural moshav with the name Zanoah, originally of Yemenite Jews, mostly new immigrants, was established south of Beth-Shemesh in 1950. Later the Yemenites were replaced by North African Jews, mostly from Morocco. Its population in 1969 was 318. In the mid-1990s the population was approximately 340


S. Yevin, in: Zion, 9 (1943), 59; Y. Aharoni, in: iej, 8 (1958), 30; W.F. Albright, in: basor, 18 (1925), 11; M. Noth, Das Buch Josua (1938), 65–66; A. Alt, in: pjb, 30 (1934), 13.

[Michael Avi-Yonah]