The Desert of the Exodus: Journeys on Foot in the Wilderness of the Forty Years' Wanderings; Undertaken in Connection with the Ordnance Survey of Sinai and the Palestine Exploration Fund

By E. H. Palmer | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XVIII.
THE WILDERNESS OF KADESH.

'Ain Gadís; Reasons for its Identification with Kadesh; its situation on the Southern Border of the Holy Land. — Ascent of the Spies. — Site of Eshcol. — Dr. Robinson's Kadesh. — Wády Muweilih. — Christian Hermitages. — Nature of Arab Tribe-marks. — Baal-worship. — 'Ain Gaseimeh. — Entrance into the Negeb, or South Country.

IMMEDIATELY below the ruins, Wády Lussán begins to narrow, and presently debouebes upon a large, open plain, where it is met by Wády Jerúr and other smaller wádies, which take their rise in the plateau of Jebel Magráh. The view is a fine one, although the outlines assumed by the limestone are not very imposing, and the landscape lacks the beautiful coloring of the Sinai mountains. From the cliffs which bound the plain runs down a valley called Wády Gadís, a spring of that name rising at its head, and the plain itself may be identified almost indisputably with the Wilderness of Kadesh. This is, perhaps, the most important site in the whole region, as it forms the key to the movements of the children of Israel during their forty years' wanderings.

The identification of 'Ain Gadis with Kadesh was first suggested by Dr. Rowlands,* but he applied the name wrongly to 'Ain el Gudeirát, some miles farther northward, and seems not to have visited this spot at all. The 'Ain Gadís discovered by us consists of three springs, or rather shallow pools, called themáil by the Arabs, one of them overflowing in the rainy season, and producing a stream of water. It is situated in about lat. 31° 34' N.,

____________________
*
Williams's Holy City, vol. i., p. 464.
This word is in meaning and etymology identical with the Kadesh of the Bible.

-282-

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