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Golgotha

Greek: Γολγοθᾶς

Aramaic: ܓܓܘܠܬܐ

the common name of the spot where Jesus was crucified

also known as: Calvary, Gagulta

It is interpreted by the evangelists as meaning “the place of a skull” (Matthew 27:33; Mark 15:22; John 19:17).

This name represents in Greek letters the Aramaic word Gulgaltha, which is the Hebrew Gulgoleth (Numbers 1:2; 1 Chronicles 23:3, 24; 2 Kings 9:35), meaning “a skull.” It is identical with the word Calvary.

It was a little knoll rounded like a bare skull. It is obvious from the evangelists that it was some well-known spot outside the gate (compare Hebrews 13:12), and near the city (Luke 23:26), containing a “garden” (John 19:41), and on a thoroughfare leading into the country. Hence it is an untenable idea that it is embraced within the present “Church of the Holy Sepulchre.”

The hillock above Jeremiah’s Grotto, to the north of the city, is in all probability the true site of Calvary. The skull-like appearance of the rock in the southern precipice of the hillock is very remarkable.