Israel - Provinces & Cities
Israel officially known as the State of Israel is a country in Western Asia, located on the southeastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea and the northern shore of the Red Sea. It has land borders with Lebanon to the north, Syria to the northeast, Jordan on the east, the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to the east and west,respectively, and Egypt to the southwest. Israel’s economic and technological center is Tel Aviv,while its seat of government and proclaimed capital is Jerusalem, although international recognition of the state’s sovereignty over Jerusalem is limited.
Israel has evidence of the earliest migration of hominids out of Africa.Canaanite tribes are archaeologically attested since the Middle Bronze Age,while the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah emerged during the Iron Age.The Neo-Assyrian Empire destroyed Israel around 720 BCE.Judah was later conquered by the Babylonian, Persian and Hellenistic empires and had existed as Jewish autonomous provinces.The successful Maccabean Revolt led to an independent Hasmonean kingdom by 110 BCE,which in 63 BCE however became a client state of the Roman Republic that subsequently installed the Herodian dynasty in 37 BCE, and in 6 CE created the Roman province of Judea.Judea lasted as a Roman province until the failed Jewish revolts resulted in widespread destruction,the expulsion of the Jewish population and the renaming of the region from Iudaea to Syria Palaestina.Jewish presence in the region has persisted to a certain extent over the centuries. In the 7th century CE, the Levant was taken from the Byzantine Empire by the Arabs and remained in Muslim control until the First Crusade of 1099, followed by the Ayyubid conquest of 1187. The Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt extended its control over the Levant in the 13th century until its defeat by the Ottoman Empire in 1517. During the 19th century, national awakening among Jews led to the establishment of the Zionist movement followed by immigration to Palestine.
Israel is a small country with a relatively diverse topography, consisting of a lengthy coastal plain, highlands in the north and central regions, and the Negev desert in the south. Running the length of the country from north to south along its eastern border is the northern terminus of the Great Rift Valley.The State of Israel is the only Jewish nation in the modern period, and the region that now falls within its borders has a lengthy and rich history that dates from prebiblical times. The area was a part of the Roman Empire and, later, the Byzantine Empire before falling under the control of the fledgling Islamic caliphate in the 7th century CE. Although the object of dispute during the Crusades, the region, then generally known as Palestine, remained under the sway of successive Islamic dynasties until the collapse of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I, when it was placed under British mandate from the League of Nations.