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|JAFFA (YAFA) : The History of an Old Palestinian Arab City|
|Jaffa in History:
Jaffa : (Arab. Yafa or Yaffa, Heb. Yafo, Bible Joppa), is a Palestinian Arab city, which lies in the West central of Palestine, on the Mediterranean Sea. Jaffa is military occupied by Israel since 1948, and is part of the unified city Tel Aviv-Yafo since 1950. Founded by the Canaanites in the 18 th century B.C.E., Jaffa has been historically important largely because of its port (which was closed in 1965 to merchant shipping, when the port of Ashdod was completed). The small old port is used as a fishing harbor and became an international marina. From archaeological discoveries and ancient documents we learn that Jaffa existed as a port city some 4,000 years ago, serving Egyptian and Phoenician sailors in their sea voyages. Historians belive that Jaffa is the only port in the world which can boast uninterrupted inhabitation throughout it's entire existence. The Canaanites named the city jaffa which meant the beautiful. The Christian legend tells us that Jaffa was named after Prophet Noah's son, Yefet, who built it after the Flood. The biblical account mentions that the cedars from Lebanon for the construction of Prophet Sulaiman's (Solomon) Temple came in via Jaffa to Jerusalem. Prophet Younes (Jonah) departed from this city in his flight from God and was engulfed by a Whale.Greek legend tells of the chaining of the beautiful Andromeda to the rocks facing Jaffa's shore. Simon the Tanner lived in Jaffa, and it was here that the apostle Peter performed a miracle. Roman legions, Amrou Bin Ala's, Richard the Lion-Hearted, Salah-Aldin Alayubi, Napoleon and Ottoman sultans all conquered the city. jaffa was captured by Egypt in 1472 B.C. and made a provincial capital. In 701 B.C. the city was besieged by Sennacherib, king of Assyria. It was often held by Philistia, and not until after the Captivity in Babylon (6th cent. B.C.) did it become Hebrew territory. Alexander the Great took Jaffa in the late 4th cent. B.C. The city changed hands frequently in the fighting between the Maccabees and the Syrians (2d and 1st cent. B.C.) and was destroyed by Vespasian in A.D. 68. The rebuilt city of Jaffa was conquered by the Arab Moslem Amrou Bin Ala's in 636. Under Islamic rule, Jaffa was the port of the provincial capital, Ramleh. The Crusaders took it in 1126, Salah-Aldin Alayubi recaptured it in 1187, and Richard I retook the city in 1191. Under the Crusaders, Jaffa was given the status of "Port of Jerusalem". In 1196 the Arabs again captured Jaffa. Between 1291-1515 Palestine comes under Islamic Mameluke rule, and Jaffa becomes the chief port of entry for travelers and pilgrims of all religions, and remains so up to the 20th century. In 1515 the city, then in decline, was annexed by the Ottoman Sultan Salim I. In the late 17th century Jaffa began to develop again as a seaport. It was captured by Napoleon in 1799. Under the governorship of Mohammed "Abu Nabut" Aja in 1820, Jaffa begins a period of development and expansion; and in 1832 the Egyptian forces of Mohammed Ali conquests Jaffa. In 1842 Mohammed Ali forces were defeated by the Ottomans. In 1917 during the World War I British troops under General Allenby defeated the Ottomans and took Jaffa, which became part of the British-administered Palestine mandate (1922-1948). In 1947 and 1948 there was sharp fighting between Jaffa, which was largely inhabited by Arabs, and the adjoining Jewish city of Tel Aviv. On the 13th of May 1948 (A day before the proclamation of the State of Israel), the Arab forces in Jaffa were defeated after long fighting with the Zionist underground Haganah and Irgun Zva'i Leumi forces, and the city was occupied by these Zionist Bands. On 24 April 1950 the Jewish city of Tel Aviv and the Arab city of Jaffa were unified, and the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality was established. Today, Palestinian Arabs constitute about 25.000 inhabitants out of a total of 35.000 people. Jaffa has an old fishing harbor, modern boat docks, and a tourism center. Jaffa is a major tourist attraction with an exciting combination of old, new and restored. It offers art galleries, souvenir shops, exclusive restaurants, sidewalk cafes, boardwalks and shopping opportunities. It offers a rich variety of culture, entertainment and food (fish restaurants). The city is noted for its export of the famous Jaffa oranges.
Author & Webmaster: Dr. Sc. Norman Ali Bassam Ali Taher Khalaf-Sakerfalke von Jaffa.
|My Favourite Links:|
|The City of JAFFA (YAFA)|
|Gazelle: The Palestinian Biological Bulletin|
|Yahoo! Palaestina Club|
|Jaffa City: History and Society Situation|
|Name:||Dr. Sc. Norman Ali Bassam Ali Taher Khalaf-Sakerfalke von Jaffa|