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Garden of Gethsemane

For other uses, see Gethsemane (disambiguation).

Coordinates: 31°46′46″N 35°14′25″E / 31.779402°N 35.240197°E / 31.779402; 35.240197

Gethsemane (Template:Lang-grc-gre, Gethsēmanē; Hebrew: גת שמנים‎, Gat-Šmânim; Aramaic: גת שמני‎, Gath-Šmânê; Template:Lang-syc, Gat Šmānê, lit. "oil press") is a garden at the foot of the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem most famous as the place where, according to the gospels, Jesus and his disciples are said to have prayed the night before Jesus' crucifixion.


Gethsemane appears in the Greek of the Gospel of Matthew[1] and the Gospel of Mark[2] as Γεθσημανή (Gethsēmanē). The name is derived from the Aramaic ܓܕܣܡܢ (Gaṯ-Šmānê), meaning "oil press".[3] Matthew (26:36) and Mark (14:32) call it χωρἰον (18:1), a place or estate. The Gospel of John says Jesus entered a garden (κῆπος) with his disciples.[4]


According to the New Testament it was a place that Jesus and his disciples customarily visited, which allowed Judas to find him on the night of his arrest.[5]

There are four[6] locations claimed to be the place where Jesus prayed on the night he was betrayed.

  1. The Church of All Nations overlooking a garden with the "Rock of the Agony."
  2. The location near the Tomb of the Virgin to the north.
  3. The Greek Orthodox location to the east.
  4. The Russian Orthodox orchard, next to the Church of Maria Magdalene by an orchard.

Dr. Thomson, author of The Land and the Book, wrote: "When I first came to Jerusalem, and for many years afterward, this plot of ground was open to all whenever they chose to come and meditate beneath its very old olive trees. The Latins, however, have within the last few years succeeded in gaining sole possession, and have built a high wall around it. The Greeks have invented another site a little to the north of it. My own impression is that both are wrong. The position is too near the city, and so close to what must have always been the great thoroughfare eastward, that our Lord would scarcely have selected it for retirement on that dangerous and dismal night. I am inclined to place the garden in the secluded vale several hundred yards to the north-east of the present Gethsemane."[7]

Pilgrimage site

According to

Olive trees

A study conducted by the National Research Council of Italy in 2012 found that several olive trees in the garden are amongst the oldest known to science.[9] Dates of 1092, 1166 and 1198 AD were obtained by carbon dating older parts of the trunks of three trees.[9] DNA tests show that the trees were originally planted from the same parent plant.[9]

See also


  • Taylor, Joan E., "The Garden of Gethsemane," Biblical Archaeology Review 21/4 (July/August 1995) 26-35:

External links

  • Catholic Encyclopedia on Gethsemane
  • Paul’s Knowledge of the Garden of Gethsemane Narrative, by Christopher Price
  • FotoTagger Annotated Galleries - Gethsemane in the art and reality
  • Article on the history of the Russian monastery itself

Template:New Testament places associated with Jesus

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