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Bethany – Baptism Site

Bethany – Baptism Site

Bethany (Baptism Site), one of the most important recent discoveries in Middle Eastern archeology has been the identification of a site on the east bank of the River Jordan, near the Dead Sea, as Bethany-beyond-the-Jordan, the place where John the Baptist lived, and where he most likely baptized Jesus Christ. Archeologists have uncovered a wealth of sites – 21 at the last count – along Wadi Kharrar, a small side-valley of reeds and flowing water that runs for 2km from its source down to the River Jordan. These discoveries – eleven Byzantine churches, five baptismal pools from the Roman and Byzantine periods, caves of monks and hermits, and lodges for pilgrims – plus a wealth of medieval accounts of pilgrims and travellers to the area, rapidly convinced both Jordanian and international opinion as to the veracity of the site.

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