What is the oldest city in the world?

Do you know the oldest city in the world? Where is it situated? Does it exist nowadays? You’ll find out everything you wanted to know about world’s oldest city here right now!

oldest city

Here's a simple question. And what city is the oldest in the world? But not just the very first city, which appeared on our Earth, but the city that since its inception despite of all the facts, have been always inhabited. Well, the most ancient city exists even nowadays and it is considered to be in Palestine, the city Jericho that appeared in the ancient copper age (about 9000 BC).


history of ancient city

After the Moses death and the exodus from Egypt the Israelites were led by Jesus Navin. According to the Yahweh will, he decided to lead them to conquer Canaan. The first town on his way, for some reason, appeared Jericho (why it happened is not clear yet) it was not situated either on the way out of Egypt, nor in the way out of that desert. The fortress was considered impregnable for centuries, so Jesus sent out spies. Obviously, the scouts have confirmed the worst fears of Israelis regarding the power of the Jericho walls, Jesus, a commander chose tactics of the siege, which doesn't have any analogues in the world history.

Jericho city

Cope Passover, Jesus made the entire male population of Israel go through the strict rite of circumcision, which was not changed at all since then. After that, the Israelites walked on a safe distance around the Jericho walls during six days. The procession was headed by the soldiers behind them there were men hopelessly blowing the horns and the trumpets, followed by the magicians and priests bearing the unique ark, and that procession was closed with old men, children and women. There were 4 million people (!), all were ominously silent, the air resounded just with howling and whistling of pipes. Besieged people watched a strange way of siege with the surprise, knowing the magic sense of what was happening. Nonetheless they did not surrender to the mercy of God's chosen people.

beautiful ancient city

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However, on the seventh day, Jesus (by the way, in violation of the covenant to rest on every seventh day) decided to storm. The Israelites walked around the walls six times, maintaining a deathly silence. And on the seventh lap they together cried loudly. The walls could not stand the screams and cries and collapsed. Perhaps with them Canaanites fainted too... The Israelis broke into that city and murdered all the inhabitants, every man, and even animals. Only the prostitute Rahab was spared. She was the one, who had let the Israeli spies to stay at her place for only one night. That city was burned to the ground.

Researches of the world's oldest city

the oldest city

Many forces have been spent on trying to find Canaanite Jericho. Much energy has been spent by researchers in search of Jericho, Israel. Search feature was the fact that science has tried to reconcile the Bible with the history: the majority of archeologists of the past were Christians. They sought confirmation of the Old Testament in Egypt and Syria, Babylonia and Palestine. From the search of the pharaoh, which occurred at the exodus from Egypt, there was a real problem, unsolvable for centuries. That's why it was extremely important to find Jericho - so it is something, if there is something that stands on the same place, on the Jordan... However, they had no idea - what it is: Canaanite or Israelite Jericho? There was found neither one nor another.

beautiful jericho

Jesus cursed Canaanite Jericho (Bk. IN, VI, 25). In the middle of the XIX century Tobler and Robinson assumed the approximate place where it was supposed to be, this ‘nightmare for scientists’ Jericho. Choosing the hill among the plain, near the Jordan, they began excavations on it, and found nothing. In 1868, Warren also dug on the hill and also nothing was found. In 1894, Blaise drew the attention of all scientists to the same hill, believing that there are still lurks beneath Jericho. A German archaeologist Sellin in 1899 studied the surface of the hill and found a few shards of Canaanite pottery. He came to the conclusion that his predecessors were still right: most likely, the ancient town lies under the accretions. Especially as there preserved village called Erich Jordan. And nearby.

hill on Jordan

In 1904, the Germans Thiersch and Gelyper were here and collected new data points to the correctness of the conclusions of all those who tried to find Jericho in the vicinity of Erich. But the honorable discoverer is still Sellin. In 1907 Sellin extracted materials, confirmed all dreams of archeologists: he found the house and part of the city wall with tower (five rows of masonry and adobe masonry with height of 3 meters). Finally, in 1908, the East German society organized more serious excavations led by Sellin, Langen-Egger and Vattsinger. In 1909 they were joined by Nöldeke and Schulze.

Hill (reminiscent of the ellipse) stretched to the north-northeast to south-southwest, the city covered an area of 235,000 square meters. Archaeologists have unearthed completely (to the north) the city wall with width of 3 meters, discovered a second city wall with width of 1, 5 meters. Another part of the wall was discovered on the same northern slope of a hill with a stone base and raw masonry, its height was 7 meters. Examining the area of 1350 square meters between the city walls and northern trial excavations, later in the upper layers scientists found Muslim cemetery, and in the lower ones - the remains of the city's buildings.

ancient city

The excavations on the west side of the hill revealed the stone stairs, constructed after the destruction of the city walls, under the stairs there were also the remains of much older buildings. In the northern part of the hill there were discovered Hittite walls of the building (building named ‘Hilani’). Towards the east wall, which was not saved, there were the remnants of houses. Not far from the inner city walls - blocks of houses and street under the wall. On an area of 200 square meters to the west they found the city wall. Also there were the remains of buildings and under the wall they found a Byzantine necropolis. Near the south-western wall there were the remains of the Jewish era house.

Palestine ancient city

Initially, archaeologists have counted eight layers, successive one another: the Muslim, the most recent submitted graves; Byzantine layer; Late-Jewish, with fragments of Attic ware - classical era; Ancient-Jewish (house above the ancient wall); Israel, which includes the house ‘Hilani’, house in the center (close to the missing east wall), tombs, stairways and outside city wall; Late-Canaanite (was found between the outer and inner city walls and ceramics); Ancient-Canaanite - remains of the city houses and the outer and inner city wall. Finally, the original layer, which was divided into several periods, it includes the house under the inner city wall, some arrays of bricks in the north-west.

city remains

Despite significant shortcomings, which have been excavated, even the fact that scientists wanted to make a lot of discoveries ‘recall with the Bible’, the main contribution of Sellin and his colleagues in science is the story of Jericho ceased to be calculated from the Jesus Navin and the scientific world got the oldest known city in the world, oldest city on Earth, its roots (in the representation of the 1920s) goes to IV BC.

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