JUDAEA, the name given to the southern part of Palestine as occupied by the Jewish community in post-exilic days under Persian, Greek and Roman overlordship. In Luke and Acts the term is sometimes used loosely to denote the whole of western Palestine. The limits of Judaea were never very precisely defined and - especially on the northern frontier - varied from time to time. After the death of Herod, Archelaus became ethnarch of Samaria, Idumea and Judaea, and when he was deposed Judaea was merged in Syria, being governed by a procurator whose headquarters were in Caesarea.
For a description of the natural features of the country see Palestine; for its history see Jews and Judah. Cf. T. Mommsen, The Provinces of the Roman Empire, ch. xi.
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