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SIPH

SIPH or ZIPHI (LXX. Alex. Ζίφ, Vat. Ὀζίβ: Eth. Ζιφαῖος), a city of the tribe of Judah, mentioned in connection with Maon, Carmel, and Juttah (Josh. 15.55). The wilderness of Ziph was a favourite hiding-place of David when concealing himself from the malice of Saul. (1 Sam. 23.14, 26, 26.1; Psalm liv. title.) This wilderness of Ziph was contiguous to the wilderness of Maon (1 Sam. 23.25); and this Maon is connected with Carmel in the history of Nabal and Abigail (25.2). The three names are still found a few miles south of Hebron, as Kirmel, Máin, Ziph. The ruins lie on a low ridge between two small wadys, which commence here and run towards the Dead Sea. “There is here little to be seen except broken walls and foundations, most of them of unhewn stone, but indicating solidity, and covering a considerable tract of ground. Numerous cisterns also remain.” (Robinson, Bibl. Res. vol. ii. p. 191). Ziph is placed by St. Jerome 8 miles E. of Hebron (S. would be more correct), and the desert of Ziph is frequently mentioned in the annals of the recluses of Palestine, while the site of the town was identified by travellers at least three centuries ago. (Fürer, Itinerarium, p. 68.)

[G.W]

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