The capital of the kingdom of Israel, i.e. of the ‘Ten [northern] Tribes’, founded by King Omri (c.880 bc) and c.721 captured by the Assyrians, who resettled the territory with pagans from other parts of their empire (2 Kgs. 18: 9–12 and ch. 17). According to Jewish tradition, the Samaritans known to later Judaism and the NT were the descendants of these settlers. Of the OT they accepted only the Pentateuch, in a slightly divergent form (the Samaritan Pentateuch). The hostility of the Jews to the Samaritans was proverbial. See also Good Samaritan.
Subjects: Biblical Studies.