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Sepharad is a Biblical placename of uncertain location. Persian inscriptions refer to two places called "Saparda", one in Media and the other in Asia Minor: the latter may be Sardes. It is only mentioned once in the Bible, in the Book of Obadiah. After the Peshitta (2nd century), it was identified with the Iberian Peninsula. The descendants of the Iberian Jews are still called Sephardim, and Sepharad is the modern Hebrew for Spain.

The location of Biblical Tarshish seems to be actually Tartessos in Southern Spain.[citation needed]

The abbot Chaud explained the connection through Hesperia, one of the Classical Greek names used for Iberia. St. Jerome's Vulgate translates bi-Sepharad as "in the Bosphorus".

[edit] References

  • Obadiah, 1-20:
    • And the captivity of this host of the children of Israel shall possess that of the Canaanites, even unto Zarephath; and the captivity of Jerusalem, which is in Sepharad, shall possess the cities of the south. (KJV)
    • et transmigratio exercitus huius filiorum Israhel omnia Chananeorum usque ad Saraptham et transmigratio Hierusalem quae in Bosforo est possidebit civitates austri. (Vulgate)

Zarephath (Sarepta in Lebanon) was itself later identified with France.


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