By Alon Tal
Read or Download All the Trees of the Forest: Israel’s Woodlands from the Bible to the Present PDF
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Extra resources for All the Trees of the Forest: Israel’s Woodlands from the Bible to the Present
Pine trees are mentioned only once in the Bible, and in the past there was some argument about whether any species of these conifers was among the natural local mix of trees. Eventually, pollen samples would resolve the debate, showing that pine trees had always been part of the endemic assemblage, long before the Crusaders arrived. Support for the indigenousness of pine trees in From the Bible to the British 21 general, and for their presence in medieval Palestine, can be found in the writings of al-Muqaddasi, a tenth-century geographer based in Jerusalem.
The Dead Sea and the Sea of Galilee sleep in the midst of a vast stretch of hill and plain wherein the eye rests upon no pleasant tint, no striking object, no soft picture dreaming in a purple haze or mottled with the shadows of the clouds. . It is a hopeless, dreary, heart-broken land. . Palestine is desolate and unlovely. ∏≥ George Marsh, although largely forgotten today, was much more famous than Mark Twain when he visited Palestine in 1864. S. congressman, a past American ambassador to the Ottoman empire and Greece, and an accomplished linguist.
But the primary phenomenon that set societies on the road to ruin was deforestation. Considering this factor in the sudden extinction of the human settlement on Easter Island, Diamond writes: ‘‘The reason for Easter’s unusually severe degree of deforestation isn’t that those seemingly nice people really were unusually bad or improvident. . ’’πΩ The land of Israel is primarily comprised of drylands that are not particularly robust and ultimately are highly vulnerable to human abuse. Consistent with the well-documented desertiﬁcation syndrome, it follows that the tremendous poverty, erosion, depopulation, poor agricultural yields, and low life expectancy that characterized Palestine during the Ottoman reign were also among the misfortunes produced by deforestation.