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September 29, 1995 - Image 50

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1995-09-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Start the year off
on the Right Foot...

Wednesday, October 4, 1995
9:00 p.m.

at the Annual

(21 and over with valid Ill)

GABRIEL LEVENSON SPECIAL TO THE JEWISH NEWS

BREAK THE FAST
DANCE

• Door Prizes -

Win 2 tickets to the Jewish Ensemble Theatre
or a 3-month Health Club Membership

• Music by SI 8. 11Q

it44

• Refreshments

Admission: $8.00 in advance
or $ 10.00 at the door.

69 \

Cures And Crocodiles
Found In Tiberias

egend has it that the health-
giving hot springs of this
lakeside town of Tiberias
owe their existence to the
wisdom of King Solomon. No
more immune to the stress of ur-
ban living (even in holy
Jerusalem) than the rest of us
sedentary mortals, his majesty
developed an excruciating back-
ache — for which a panel of court
physicians recommmended heat-
ed baths as the only cure.
Whereupon, Solomon —
among whose titles was Master
of the Demons, and who want-

L

: 89)n
I 193E

were denied the pleasure of
bathing in the complex of pools
which Roman hyrdraulic engi-
neers would contrive for a suc-
cession of overfed Caesars
conveyed to the spa to sweat off
excess poundage.
One such complex of hot baths
is in the area of Tiberias; it was
known to the Greek historian,
Eunapeus, as the second largest
in the entire Roman Empire. It
has been revived and used again
in modern times since its exca-
vation by a team of Israeli ar-
chaeologists. The ancient baths

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ed a really hot bath — dispatched have been reopened as Hammat
a work-crew of strong, young dev- Gader National Park, now one of
ils to the bowels of the earth to the country's most popular tourist
heat up the underground waters. attractions.
Immersion in the hot springs
Not the least of the park's fea-
evidently helped the king, as it tures are its facilities as a spa.
has, in the 30 centuries since, the The natural hot spring water in
thousands of other sufferers, en- an open-air mineral pool contains
during a variety of ailments, who sulphur, chloride, calcium and
have made the pilgrimage to this magnesium. The constant year-
pleasant spot on the shores of the round temperature is exactly
Sea of Galilee.
107.6 degrees. Adjoining are also
In turn, Israelites, Romans, a covered pool, more than a dozen
Arabs, Crusaders, Turks, mod- water-massage installations and
ern Israelis and now, increas- a large bathhouse with showers
ingly, Americans have enjoyed and changing rooms. Scheduled
the naturally heated baths, the Egged buses make the 12-mile
healing mud packs, the unfailing run frequerntly between Tiber-
sunshine and the succulent fish tias itself and Hammat Park.
(known locally as "St. Peter's")
There is, happily, a continuity
which abound in the freshwater, between the ancient and modern.
inland sea.
Visitors can see the ruins of the
Herod Antipas, son of Herod elaborate baths in which the Ro-
the Great, founded Tiberias in man emperors disported them-
the first century of the Common selves: the caldarium, hot-water
Era, on the site of Rakkath, the pool; tepidarium, with luke-warm
biblical town allotted by Joshua water; and the frigidarium, the
to the tribe of Naphtali. Herod cold-water pool from which the
named the new town "Tiberias," shivering royalty would emerge
after the then-reigning Rdman for a brisk towelling by their
emperor, Tiberius, and declared slaves and a rubdown with per-
it capital of Galilee.
fumed olive oil.
The local population was large-
Israel's democratic society of-
ly Jewish fishermen, but they fers no such sybaritic excesses,

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