Joseph's Tomb

Nicholas Michell

Yet hallowed be the land where Joseph sleeps,
And Jacob's well Tradition guards and keeps.
Though gone the shrine which graced the holy hill,
Green wave the woods on high Gerizim still:
Soft pipes the lonely bird at dying day,
Where incense rolled, and priests were wont to pray.

Author's Note: Joseph was buried at Shechem, now Nablous. Jacob's well, at which Christ conversed with the woman of Samaria, is south-east of that town; the ruins of an edifice built by Helena stand above it.

On the sacred mountain of Gerizim the Samaritans, 32O BC built a temple which, being considered in a measure the rival of that at Jerusalem, served to embitter the feelings and widen the breach between the pure Hebrews and the spurious race. This temple stood no more than two centuries.