I Kings 16:24 has a king of North Israel buying some empty-ish land and building a new city on it to serve as the capital.

If I understand the laws of Yovel ("jubilee year") correctly, then the city of Shomron/Samaria was not walled in the times of Joshua, and thus reverts to its ancestral owner every 50 years or so.

How did that work, having a full capital city of the kingdom revert back every few decades? Was there a halachic reason why the Yovel wasn't observed? Or perhaps it was supposed to be observed, but simply wasn't as they people were worshiping idols anyhow?

  • Maybe a girl inherited it and one of the kings married her.
    – Heshy
    Jan 14, 2022 at 19:41
  • 1
    daat.ac.il/he-il/hagim/hodashim/purim_adar/elizur-zmaney.htm I think this is a summary of a longer piece he wrote elsewhere, but I can't find it now before shabbat
    – Double AA
    Jan 14, 2022 at 20:18
  • For some reason I've always understood that Shemer was not Jewish.
    – Harel13
    Jan 15, 2022 at 16:30
  • I've found some opinions that the kings of Israel regarded Shomron with the same level of halachic holiness as Yerushalayim. Does Yerushalayim have special status during Yovel?
    – Harel13
    Jan 15, 2022 at 20:01
  • @Harel13 Jerusalem was walled at the time the Jews entered Israel, so you could buy land permanently there. Shomron, it appears, was not.
    – Shalom
    Jan 15, 2022 at 23:40


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