Gabbatha in the Bible
Gabbatha in the New Testament
Gabbatha is given (Jn 19:13) as the name of a special pavement (Grk: to lithostroton), and is probably a transcription in Greek of the Aramaic Heb: gabhetha', meaning "height" or "ridge." Tradition which now locates the Pretorium at the Antonia and associates the triple Roman arch near there with the "Ecce Homo" scene, naturally identifies an extensive area of massive Roman pavement, with blocks 4 ft. x 3 1/2 ft. and 2 ft. thick, near the "Ecce Homo Arch," as the Gabbatha.
This paved area is in places roughened for a roadway, and in other places is marked with incised designs for Roman games of chance. The site is a lofty one, the ground falling away rapidly to the East and West, and it must have been close to, or perhaps included in, the Antonia. But apart from the fact that it is quite improbable that the Pretorium was here, it is almost certain that the Grk: lithostroton was a mosaic pavement (compare Est 1:6), such as was very common in those days, and the site is irretrievably lost.
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