Sites & cities that bear the name of Haluza


Today in : Israel
First trace of activity : ca. 3rd century B.C.E
Last trace of activity : ca. 8th century C.E
Recorded names : الخلصة‎, חלוצה‎, Al-Khalasa, Halasa, Chellous, Χελλοὺς, ΕΛΟΥϹΑ, Elusa, al-Khalūṣ

Description : Haluza (Arabic: الخلصة‎; Hebrew: חלוצה‎), also known as Al-Khalasa, Halasa, Chellous (Χελλοὺς in Greek, although in the 6th-century Madaba Map the town appears as ΕΛΟΥϹΑ), Elusa, al-Khalasa and al-Khalūṣ (Arabic), was a city in the Negev near present-day Kibbutz Mash'abei Sadeh that was once part of the Nabataean Incense Route. It lay on the route from Gaza to Petra. In the 5th century it was surrounded by vinyards and was famous for its wines. Due to its historic importance, UNESCO declared Haluza a World Heritage Site along with Mamshit, Avdat and Shivta. The ruins of Halusa are located in a large plain 20 km (12 mi) southwest of Beersheba, Israel. Many inscriptions have been found there. In the vicinity, according to the Targums, was the desert of Sur with the well at which the angel found Hagar (Genesis 16:7). (See Revue Biblique, 1906, 597). In 2014, two archaeological survey-excavations were conducted at Haluza on behalf of the University of Cologne in Germany and Haifa University. Archaeological surveys of the area are partly hampered by the presence of shifting sands. However, Nabataean streets have been found, along with two churches, a theatre, wine press and tower. The bishopric of Elusa is included in the Catholic Church's list of titular sees. In March 2019, a team of German and Israeli archaeologists announced the discovery of a 1,700-year-old Greek inscription, bearing the name of the city of Elusa. By analysing rubbish removed from the city, it has been determined that it underwent a major decline around the middle of the sixth century, about a century before the Islamic conquest. The excavators propose that their findings call for a reevaluation of the settlement history of the Negev region in the late Byzantine period. One possible cause for the crisis is raised as the Late Antique Little Ice Age, a cold snap believed to have been caused by "volcanic winter".

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