Lydda was a city between Jerusalem and Joppa (Jaffa) in the coastal plain of Israel. It is now 10 miles southeast of Tel Aviv-Jaffa.

Lydda was called Lod in the Old Testament and founded by Shamed, a Benjamite. Outside of Judea in the Hellenistic period, in 145 b.c. it was detached from Samaria and given to Jonathan the Hasmonean by Demetrius II. Lydda was Jewish by the time of the Maccabees but Cassius, the governor of Syria, sold its inhabitants into slavery in In 43 a.d. It was burned by Cestius Gallus during the Jewish uprising and occupied by Vespasian in 68.

Famous for purple-dyed materials, Lydda had a large market-place, cattle and pottery industries. After the destruction of Jerusalem, Lydda became a center of rabbinical learning and a seat of the Sanhedrin. Scholars of Lydda included Akiva and Eliezer ben Hyrcanus. It also had a Christian community at the time of Peter.
[356, I Chronicles 8:12, Acts 9:32--35]

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