The people of Issachar had "Carmel and the river for their bounds in length": the people of Zabulon, "Carmel and the sea."
Carmel was not so much one mountain as a mountainous country, containing almost the whole breadth of the land of Issachar, and a great part of that of Zabulon. It was, as it seems, a certain famous peak among many other mountain tops, known by the same name, lifted up and advanced above the rest. The promontory Carmel, in Pliny, and in the mountain a town of the same name, heretofore called Ecbatane; where probably Vespasian sometimes consulted the oracle of the god Carmel.
The sea washes upon the foot of the mountain. "R. Samuel Bar Chaiah Bar Judah said, in the name of R. Chaninah, Any one sitting upon mount Carmel when the orb of the setting sun begins now to disappear, if he goes down and washes himself in the great sea, and goes up and eats his Truma, it is to be presumed that he washed in the day time."
"Carmel and the river." What is that river? Kishon, say the maps: for some describe it not far from Carmel, pouring out itself into the sea: and that not without a reason, fetched from 1 Kings 18:40. But you must suppose Kishon to flow south of Carmel,--not, as some would have it, on the north.
"The lake Cendevia flows at the foot of Carmel; and out of it the river Pagida or Bel, mingling glassy sands with its small shore"; so Pliny,--who hath moreover these words, "Near is the colony of Claudius Caesar, Ptolemais, heretofore Ace, the town Ecdippa, the white promontory, Tyrus, heretofore an island, &c. Thence are the town Ide [otherwise Enhydra], and Sarepta, and Ornithon; and Sidon, skillful in making glass," &c.
These places you may call not so much the bounds of Galilee as of Phoenicia: for in Ptolemais itself, or Acon, was the separation and parting of the land of Israel from Phoenicia. Hence Josephus, "Phoenice and Syria do compass the two Galilees, the upper and the nether so called: and Ptolemais and Carmel set bounds to the country on the west."--What! do Ptolemais and Carmel stint the whole length of Galilee on the west? He had said elsewhere, which we also have produced elsewhere, that the land of Nephthali was extended as far as mount Libanus (on the north): alas, how far behind Ptolemais! And the land Asher was extended so far also: but "Ptolemais was the sea-borders of Palestine" (to use Pliny's words), for from hence onward were the territories of Tyre and Sidon; and Galilee was not now bounded any longer by the sea, but by those territories.
We saw in the scheme produced by us in the second chapter of this little work, wherein the compass of the land under the second Temple is briefly described, how, "The walls of Aco" are there set for a bound; and that in the sense which we speak of, which afterward also will appear more....