Hebrew GADER, Arabic UM-QEIS
Famous Hellenised city in Syria, one of the ten
known as the Decapolis. The miracle of
the Gadarene swine probably did not take place here, although
there is some confusion of spelling between manuscripts.
Gadara was a centre of high culture and home to a number
of celebrated Greek philosophers; the
Cynic school, sometimes thought to have influenced
early Christianity, was particularly strong. According to
Jewish legend, Gadara was named for the vineyard wall (gader)
where Balaam's ass halted.
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