Tabgha, Galilee, Israel — The Middle East
Church of Heptapegon
The Seven Springs
The Judeo-Christians of Capharnaum venerated a large rock upon which Jesus is said to have laid the bread and fish before he fed the five thousand (Mk 6:30-44)
ca. 350 AD
Used as an altar, the rock was the very center of the first church at this site, built be a Jewish nobleman from Tiberias. Oriental communities venerated him as Saint Josipos. The church was built in close alignment with the ancient Via Maris.
ca. 480 AD
A Byzantine church with an unusual transept was erected. Its mosaic floor is of great artistic value. The building and its mosaics reveal Egyptian influence. The historic rock, reduced in size, was moved and placed beneath the altar.
During the Persian invasion the Heptapegon Church was destroyed and faded into oblivion. After the Muslim conquest (636 AD) Christian activity ceased around the lake for centuries.
1932 The ancient church ruins, hidden for 1300 years, were excavated by Father Mader and his team. The mosaics were found, surprisingly, to be, to a large extent, intact.
1980/82 The ancient Byzantine basilica was reconstructed on its original foundations by the architects Goergen and Baumann. (Koln, Deutscher Verein vom Heiligen Land)
Fr. Bargil Pixner
Erected by Custodia Terrae Sanctae, Ordo Fratrum Minorum, Franciscan Friars.
Location. 32° 52.412′ N, 35° 32.964′ E. Marker is in Tabgha, Galilee. Marker can be reached from Route 87 0.8 kilometers east of Route 90. Click for map. The marker is off the church's courtyard, on the wall of the open breezeway.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 kilometers of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Capharnaum (approx. 2.4 kilometers away); The Synagogue of Capharnaum (approx. 2.5 kilometers away); The Synagogue of Jesus (approx. 2.6 kilometers away in Northern District); Domestic Building (approx. 9.8 kilometers away in Northern District); The Architecture of Tiberias (approx. 9.8 kilometers away in Northern District); The Synagogue (approx. 9.8 kilometers away in Northern District); Doors of Burial Caves / Burial Customs - Sarcophagi (approx. 9.8 kilometers away in Northern District); "Magic on the sea of galilee..." (approx. 9.8 kilometers away in Northern District).
More about this marker. The panel contains illustrations of the floor plan of the old church, portraits of St. Josipos, and renderings of the church's famous mosaics.
Also see . . .
1. Church of the Loaves and Fishes.
2. Via Maris. Wikipedia
3. Tabgha. Tabgha (also spelled Tabhka) is not a city, but a small area on the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee, not far from Capernaum. In ancient times, Tabgha was known as Heptapegon - "Place of the Seven Springs." These seven springs produce warm water, which increases the production of algae in this part of the lake, which attracts more fish. Fisherman have thus flocked to Heptapegon for thousands of years. ...
Additional keywords. "Feeding the 5,000"; Mount of the Beatitudes.
Categories. • Arts, Letters, Music • Churches, Etc. •
Credits. This page originally submitted on July 2, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,232 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on July 2, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 3. submitted on July 3, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 4. submitted on July 2, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 5, 6. submitted on July 3, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 7, 8. submitted on July 4, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. 9, 10, 11, 12. submitted on April 15, 2013, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.