Mount Of, Or Monnt Olivet Olives (Aral). Jebel et-Tur), a mountain of Palestine celebrated in Biblical history. It is a few hundred yards E. of Jerusalem, separated from it by the valley of Jehoshaphat, through which flows the brook Kedron. It is a ridge rather than a single hill, having three summits. The centre, a little rounded top on which stands the village of Tur, is 2,643 ft. above the sea and 384 ft. above the valley; and being higher than the most elevated part of Jerusalem, it is before one's eyes from nearly all the streets, and affords the most favorable view of the city. The sides are partly cultivated in terraces, streaked here and there with bare rock, and dotted with the olive trees from which the mountain takes its name. From this central summit, according to a very old tradition, the ascension of Jesus took place; and a church was built here by the empress Helena on the site of one now occupied by the Armenians. The garden of Geth-semane lies on the declivity near the foot of the hill. The central summit is apparently the highest, but, according to the latest and most accurate surveys, the northern exceeds it by about 20 ft. Toward the north the ridge sweeps around to the west and spreads out into the high level tract of the city.
On the south it sinks down into a lower ridge over against the "well of Nehemiah," now called by the Franks the "Mount of Offence," in allusion to the idolatrous worship established by Solomon " in the hill that is before Jerusalem." From this summit the Dead sea may be seen. On the east the mount of Olives overlooks the "wilderness of Judah," which stretches over a succession of desolate hills for 10 m., and is then bounded by the valley of the Jordan. The road to Bethany passes over Mt. Olivet. The Saviour used to sit here with his disciples, and retire hither alone to rest and pray. Here he delivered some of his parables, and passed the last night before he was seized and delivered up to Pontius Pilate.
Mount of Olives.