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LYDDA (Lod).

Ancient town southeast of Tel Aviv, on the road to the Judean hills. Lydda had a considerable population after the Jewish return from Babylonian captivity in 537 B.C.E., serving as an important commercial center between Damascus and Egypt. The Romans called it Diospolis, “the City of God,” and burned it down during the Bar Kokhba revolt. In the 2nd and 3rd centuries, Lod was known for its Talmudical academy. It was conquered by the Israel Army during the War of Independence in 1948. Israel’s largest airport is now located near the town.

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