New Evidence for the History of Indigenous Aramaic Christianity in Southern Jordan


  • W. J. (Bill) Jobling


Pre-Islamic Southern Jordan has for some time been a much neglected Aramaic-speaking domain in the history of the spread of the early Christian movement as it emerged from its Judaic origins. This is in spite of the large Byzantine site of Khirbet Humayma at the northern end of the Hisma and the sites in and around the Wadi Ramm, Petra and the copper-rich Wadi Araba. Now recent excavations of a large tripartite basilica which was discovered at Petra in 1990 and the discovery in its environs of ancient scrolls in December, 1993, have revived interest in the episcopal sees of Palestina Tertia, or Third Palestine, and the history of their origins and development.