A city in Galilee where the parents of Jesus lived; therefore, His own home in childhood and early manhood. Accordingly He is called "Jesus of Nazareth" (John 1:45), also "Nazarene" (Acts 6:14). The town is picturesque, and is situated on the side of a hill (Luke 4:29), commanding a splendid view of the plain of Esdraelon and Mount Carmel. During the days of Christ it was held in contempt, but no reason is given for this (John 1:46). Jesus taught in the synagogue of the city (Luke 4:29). The "Virgin's fountain," the only one in the city, can safely be associated with the life of Christ. It was in Nazareth that Jesus labored as a carpenter (Mark 6:3). Its modern name is En-Nasira.

Today, Nazareth houses a larger Arab population than any other city in Israel, and is the cultural capital for its Arab citizens.

Aptly explained in the above writeup by ephealy, Nazareth was the childhood home of Jesus and where he labored as a carpenter. Recently though, archaeological investigations within the city have yielded new insight into the city's cultural diversity and may even explain why it was held in contempt in the days of Christ. In the summer of 2003, forensic archaeologists and biblical scholars descended on a small souvenir shop owned by the family of a Christian Arab by the name of Elias Shama. It seems that in the previous years, Shama had been doing a little exploring in the basement of his shop. Shama discovered some 4 foot high passageways seperated by small brick columns all leading to a walled-off room. Inside here, underneath a white marble floor, were ash residues indicating the presence of a once functioning furnace. When Shama finally shared the news of these findings, many here-to-before uninterested parties became quite interested.

It seems these passageways, or tunnels, were the foundations of a very large Roman style bathhouse dating from the time of Christ. An expert on Holy Land digs, Professor Richard Freund, believes the significance of such findings "cannot be overstated."


I am sure that what we have here is a bathhouse from the time of Jesus and the consequences of that for archaeology, and for our knowledge of the life of Jesus, are enormous.


Further excavations even showed an older bathhouse under the one discovered by Shama. Radiocarbon dates have yet to be released but the presence of the underfloor system of heating channels and the "cold room" leave no doubt as to its usage and the stratigraphy leaves little doubt as to its proximity to the time of Christ.

These findings also change a historians view of the place and significance of Nazareth in the Roman Empire. Until now, Nazareth was perceived as a small and poor Jewish settlement where families lived in hillside caves. A village where Jesus would have had little or no contact with Romans or their culture until he parted as an adult. But the size of this giant bath, large enough to serve a large Roman garrison, leads scholars to believe that Nazareth may have been the "local hub of military control from Rome" instead of the previously perceived village of Sephori. This would indicate that Joseph, Mary, and Jesus actually lived in the "very heart of Roman military power" and would give Jesus the opportunity to be fully indoctrinated in Roman customs and to be understanding and tolerant of Roman culture.

Much lies in the balance here. Further excavation has been halted by both financial and political roadblocks, but some day Shama hopes to continue and possibly uncover trinkets and artifacts from where Jesus lived. His shop is close to collapsing due to the excavations on the bathhouse project but he remains optimistic in spite. Shama hopes one day, "to make the bathhouse of Jesus live again, just like it was 2000 years ago."


Sources:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,3604,1067930,00.html
http://www.cronaca.com/archives/001593.html
http://www.classicalvalues.com/archives/000491.html
Nazareth the rock band were comprised of Dan McCafferty (raw vocals), Manny Charlton (chiming guitars), Pete Agnew (steady, sturdy basslines) and Darryl Sweet (skinman). Originally, they were a trio of Dunfermline, Scotland-based semi-professionals, Charlton not joining the troupe until 1969.

Signing up with the Warner Brothers' label, the band had their first self-titled album out in 1971 and were doing the Scottish circuit, where they garnered a respectable reputation as a lean, mean, no-nonsense hard-rock combo, but it was clear only a shift to London could translate that to national acclaim.

The move was duly made and their third album, "Razamanaz", produced by former Deep Purple bassman Roger Glover, yielded results. Two lifts from the album, "Broken Down Angel" and "Bad Bad Boy", gave them their first U.K. hits in 1973, followed up the same year by a Joni Mitchell composition(!), "This Flight Tonight".

The continent was next, "Loud 'n' Proud" topping the album charts in Finland, Sweden and Switzerland and placing second in West Germany. It also helped Nazareth make the first waves on American shores. This was firmly consolidated in 1975 with release of "Love Hurts" to enormous FM airplay.

Canada also buckled in 1975, the "Rampant" album going pre-release gold. These two albums also saw the group (specifically Charlton) taking over production chores for themselves.

From this time up to the end of the decade, a no-show in the album Top 100 was a rare occurrence. Recruiting Zal Cleminson (from the Sensational Alex Harvey Band) in 1979 did nothing to dim their light, resulting in "No Mean City" and, the following year, "Malice In Wonderland".

Cleminson's guitar was, perhaps surprisingly, replaced by keyboards that year, with Spirit's John Locke being called up. He, in turn, was replaced by Bill Rankin - originally a guitarist joining in 1981.

It was the Eighties now, however, and a new world order was looming. Faced with the folding of their Mountain label and no immediate prospect of a contract and also a chronically-diminished commercial appeal, Nazareth took a sabbatical.

Resurfacing in 1992, they found "No Jive" achieving little in either the U.S. or the U.K. and took cover again, returning in 1999 with "Boogaloo"



Discography.

"Nazareth"
"Exercises"
"Razamanaz"
"Loud 'n' Proud"
"Hair Of The Dog"
"Rampant"
"Close Enough For Rock 'n' Roll"
"Play 'N The Game"
"Nazareth Greatest Hits"
"No Mean City"
"Malice In Wonderland"
"Snaz" (live)
"No Jive"
"Boogaloo"

"Dan McCafferty" (solo)

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