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GILBOA, MOUNT gĭl bō’ ə (גִּלְבֹּֽעַ; LXX Γελβουε; etymology unknown). A mountain or range of mountains, about eight m. long and from three to five m. wide, lying to the E of the , on the border between Samaria and Galilee. The highest peak, Sheikh Burqān, is only 1,696 ft, above sea level, but it falls off rather abruptly on the E to the Jordan, 2,000 ft. below. The western slope inclines more gradually to the Esdraelon, 300 ft. above sea level. On these western slopes occurred the last battle and the death of Saul and his three sons, Jonathan, Abinadab, and Malchishua (
The name Gilboa (which always has the definite article in Heb. except in
Jezreel (q.v.), summer capital of the house of Omri (
G. A. Smith, The Historical Geography of the Holy Land, 25th ed. (1931); Y. Aharoni, The Land of the Bible: A Historical Geography (1962; Eng. tr. by A. F. Rainey, 1967).
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)
The modern name of the mountain is Jebel Faqu`a. It rises on the eastern edge of the plain of Esdraelon, and, running from Zer`in to the Southeast, it then sweeps southward to join the Samarian uplands. It presents an imposing appearance from the plain, but the highest point, Sheikh Burqan, is not more than 1,696 ft. above sea level. In the higher reaches the range is rugged and barren; but vegetation is plentiful on the lower slopes, especially to the West. The Kishon takes its rise on the mountain. Under the northern cliffs rises `Ain Jalud, possibly identical with HAROD, WELL OF, which see. In Jelbun, a village on the western declivity, there is perhaps an echo of the old name.