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Ancient Biblical Qer Harreseth (Kir Moab) -- Karak -- Kerak in Jordan

Aerial View Qir Moav -- American Colony (1914) ..... Crusader Fortification -- American Colony (1914) ..... Ramparts of Kerak -- American Colony (1914)

Town in Karak governorate on the Wadi Karak 50 miles South of Amman in West Central Jordan. Karak stands upon a lofty spur projecting westward from the Moab plateau about 10 miles from the Dead Sea. It was an ancient walled citadel and capital of the Moabites (Kir Moab) in the first millennium BC. Tiglath-Pileser [Assyria] carried the captive Syrians here after he had taken the city of Damascus (AFSFC).

II Kings 16:9 And the King of Assyria hearkened unto him: for the King of Assyria went up against Damascus and took it and carried the people of it captive to Kir and slew Rezin

Amos 1:5 I will break also the bar of Damascus and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir saith the LORD

Al-Karak has been inhabited since at least the Iron Age and was an important city for the Moabites. In the Bible it is called Qer Harreseth or Kir of Moab and is identified as having been subject to the Assyrian empire; in the Books of Kings (16:9) and Book of Amos (1:5 and 9:7) it is mentioned as the place where the Syrians went before they settled in the regions north of Palestine and to which Tiglath-Pileser III sent the prisoners after the conquest of Damascus. In 1958 the remains of an inscription was found in Wadi al-Karak that has been dated to the late 9th century BC.

During the late Hellenistic Period al-Karak became an important town taking its name from the Aramaic word for town, Kharkha (כרכא). The area eventually fell under the power of the Nabateans (1).

(1) Al-Karak (Wikipedia)

Archaeological Survey of the Kerak Plateau : ASOR Archaeological Reports : J Maxwell Miller (1991)

The History of the Ancient Near East Electronic Compendium