Kiryat Ye'arim (Hebrew: קִרְיַת יְעָרִים), also known as Telz-Stone, is an ultra-Orthodox town in the Jerusalem District of Israel. It is located in the approximate area of an ancient place mentioned in the Bible, from which it takes its name. It is bordered on one side by the Muslim Arab village of Abu Ghosh, and on the other side by the secular Jewish community of Neve Ilan.[2] In 2017 it had a population of 4,840

Kiryat Ye'arim

  • קִרְיַת יְעָרִים
  • قرية يعاريم
Hebrew transcription(s)
 • ISO 259Qiryat Yˁarim
 • Also spelledKiryat Yearim (unofficial)
Beth midrash in Kiryat Ye'arim
Beth midrash in Kiryat Ye'arim
Kiryat Ye'arim is located in Jerusalem, Israel
Kiryat Ye'arim
Kiryat Ye'arim
Coordinates: 31°48′13.53″N 35°6′9.03″E / 31.8037583°N 35.1025083°E / 31.8037583; 35.1025083Coordinates: 31°48′13.53″N 35°6′9.03″E / 31.8037583°N 35.1025083°E / 31.8037583; 35.1025083
District Jerusalem
 • TypeLocal council
 • Head of MunicipalityAvraham Rozental
 • Total4,840
Name meaningTown of forests



Kiryat Ye'arim is located approximately 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) west of Jerusalem, just north of the Tel AvivJerusalem highway. Neighboring Kiryat Ye'arim to the northeast is the Arab town of Abu Ghosh. Kiryat Ye'arim is between 661.8 and 749.5 meters above sea level.[3]

Biblical connectionEdit

Kiriath-Jearim in the Hebrew BibleEdit

The modern town of Kiryat Ye'arim (Town of Forests) is named for Kiriath-Jearim, mentioned in the Bible as the site where the Ark of the Covenant has been kept for 20 years, according to the Book of Samuel. From here the Ark was taken to Jerusalem by King David (I Chronicles 13, 5-8).

Location of Kiriath-JearimEdit

There are those who believe that a nearby tell[dubious ] contains the remains of the biblical town. Another theory is that the biblical town was located under the modern Arab village of Abu Ghosh.[4]


Six hundred dunams of modern-day Kiryat Ye'arim were purchased before 1948 by Menashe Elissar, a businessman who was attracted to the site as the location of the biblical Kiryat Ye'arim.[5]

The modern community was established in 1973[6] by a group of students and teachers from Yeshivat Telz in America. Despite the official name of "Kiryat Yearim," it is widely known as Telz-Stone, after the yeshiva and American Greetings founder-chairman Irving I. Stone, who helped to finance the community's early development.[2]

Kiryat Yearim, circa 1904

Archaeological digEdit

In 2017 it was announced that the first archaeological dig will begin at the site of the convent centered on the Church of Our Lady of the Ark of the Covenant in Abu Ghosh, led by Israel Finkelstein of Tel Aviv University and by Christophe Nicolle and Thomas Römer of the College de France.[7] For more, see under Abu Ghosh.


According to the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), at the end of 2005 Kiryat Ye'arim had a population of 3,100, predominantly Jewish, with a growth rate of 1.2%. Many of the residents are immigrants from North America, Europe and South Africa.


Kiryat Ye'arim is home to three Orthodox post-high school yeshivas aimed at foreign students, particularly from the U.S.: Neveh Zion, Keser Dovid and Yishrei Lev [8]


  1. ^ "Localities File" (XLS). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 2017. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  2. ^ a b Community Profiles: Telz-Stone/Kiryat Yearim
  3. ^ "Local Authorities in Israel 2005, Publication #1295 - Municipality Profiles - Kiryat Ye'arim" (PDF) (in Hebrew). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 2008-02-16.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ The Plot Thickens in Saga Between Hollywood Has-been and Haredi Community
  6. ^ Itineraries in Conflict: Israelis, Palestinians, and the Political Lives of Tourism, Rebecca L. Stein
  7. ^ Ben Zion, Ilan (8 February 2017). "Archaeologists to break ground at biblical site where Ark of the Covenant stood". Times of Israel. Retrieved 8 February 2017.
  8. ^ "Kiryat Yearim (Telz-Stone)". Nefesh B'Nefesh - Aliyahpedia. Retrieved 19 April 2016.