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Esdraelon (ĕsˌdrəēˈlən) [key] [Gr. for Jezreel], fertile plain, c.200 sq mi (520 sq km), extending southeast c.25 mi (40 km) between the coastal plain, near Mt. Carmel, and the Jordan River valley, N Israel; separates the hills of Galilee on the north from those of Samaria to the south. The plain is drained in the west by the Kishon River and in the east by the Harod. Once a swampy, malarial lowland, Esdraelon has been drained and turned into one of Israel's most fertile and densely populated regions. A great variety of crops are produced there in abundance. Since ancient times the plain has been a battleground, especially around Megiddo. Esdraelon is also called the plain of Jezreel or of Megiddo.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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