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Yavne'el, Israel

Coordinates:  32° 42' 34.00" N  35° 29' 58.00" E
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Yavne'el1 is a moshav that was founded on 7 October 1901 in the Yavne'el Valley, southwest of Tiberias. Currently, the town encompasses 31,680 dunams2, equivalent to 12.23 square miles. The name of Yavne'el is associated with the biblical city of Yamah3 which was located within the territory of the Tribe of Binyamin.

The region around Yavne'el has been occupied from at least the Late Bronze Age (ca. 2500 BCE - 1150 BCE). Archeological remains have been found from the Iron Age, and from Persian, Hellenistic, Roman, and Late Byzantine Eras. Also found were buildings from the Umayyad (661 CE - 750 CE), Abbasid (750 CE - 1258 CE), and Mamluk (1250 CE - 1517 CE) Caliphates. During the Ottoman Era (1299 CE - 1923 CE) the Ottoman Turks controlled the region around Yavne'el. Potsherds from the Roman period and an Ottoman period seal have been found near Yavne'el.

During the Ottoman Era, the Muslim village near the future site of Yavne'el, was named Yemma. The Ottoman defter4 (tax register) for the year 1555-6 mentions the village. Napoleon's cartographer created a map during the 1799 campaign that includes the village of Yemma. More than seventy-five years later, in 1875, a visitor to the area, Victor Guérin, described the village as in ruin, built of basaltic stone, and situated in a fertile valley. Six years after Guérin's visit the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine characterized Yemma in similar terms, adding that one-hundred Muslims lived in the village, which had neither gardens nor trees, but did have two springs and cisterns. Southwest of the village was a water source located among the rocks of the valley.

Yavne'el, 1921
Yavne'el, 1921
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The Jewish Colonization Association founded Yavne'el on land purchased jointly by Baron Rothschild, and by Jewish villagers from Metula and from the Hauran region; the settlers from the latter region had been evicted from there by the Ottoman authorities in 1898.

The British Mandate Census of 1922 listed 365 Jews (81.7%) as living in Yamma (Yabnieh) out of a total population of 447 people. The 1931 census showed that the total number of residents living in the village remained the same; but the number of Jews increased by twenty-six people (to 391 residents or 87.5%) while the Muslim population decreased by the same number, to fifty-six people. The 1931 census also indicated that the village consisted of one-hundred-two houses. (See Census Page for census details.)

Rabbi Eliezer Shlomo Schick
Rabbi Eliezer Shlomo
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By 1945, the Yavne'el population had grown; there were then 590 Jews living in the village. The trend in the relative size of religious groups continued; in that year the village consisted of Jews alone. During the first decade of the twenty-first century the village population reached 3,100 people. The Israeli Farmers Union, the Galilee Squadron, and the Golani Brigade were founded in Yavne'el.

Yavne'el is the home of a community of newly religious adherents. The community, calling itself Breslov City, was founded in 1986 by the Hasidic Rabbi Eliezer Shlomo Schick. In 2015, the community consisted of four-hundred families, forming 30% of the total population.

Ruth Amiran, Archaeologist, 1914 - 2005
Ruth Amiran
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Notable Residents


  1. Wikipedia: Yavne'el
  2. Dunam
  3. In English Yamah is translated as 'to the west';
    the biblical meaning is 'toward the sea'
  4. Wikipedia: Defter

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Created: 23 June 2018

Last Modified: 07-07-2018

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