Japhi'a (Heb. Yaphi'a, יָפַיעִ, splendid; Sept. Ι᾿αφιε v.r. Ι᾿αφαγαί and Φαγγαί, but Ι᾿εφιέ. in 2Sa 5; 2Sa 15), the name of two men, and also of a place.
1. The king of Lachish, who joined the confederacy at the instance of Adoni-zedek against Joshua, but was defeated and slain after confinement in the cave of Makkedah (Jos 10:3 sq.). B.C. 1618.
2. 'One of the sons of David (q.v.) by some one of his full wives whose name is not given, born at Jerusalem (2Sa 5; 2Sa 15; 1Ch 3:7; 1Ch 14:6). B.C. post 1046.
3. A town on the eastern part of the southern boundary of Zebulon, situated on high ground between Daberath and Gath-hepher on the north (Jos 19:12). Reland (Palcest. p. 826) thinks it is the town Sycaninum (ἡ Συκαμίνος or Συκαμίνων, Steph. Byz. Συκάμινον), on the Mediterranean, opposite Carmel, between Ptolemaisa and Caesarea (Pliny, 5, 15, 5), according to the Itin. Ainton. twenty Roman miles from the latter; called Hephat ( ῾Ηφά) in the time of Eusebius (Onoze. s.v. Ι᾿αφέδ), and still extant (Golii Not. ad Alfrag. p. 132) under the name of Haiffa (Robinson's Researches, 3, 194). He also regards it as the Jebba of Pliny (5, 18), which Gesenius, however (Thesaur. p. 613), shows is distinguished from Sycaminum.. This position does not agree with the requirements of the text. The place has been identified by Dr. Robinson (Researches, 3:200) with the modern village Yafa, about a mile and a half southwest of Nazareth (Schubert, Reise, 3, 203), where the Italian monks fix the residence of the apostle James (Raumer, Palast. p. 127). See Quaresmius, Elucidatio, 2, 843; and Early Travels, p. 186: Maundeville calls it the "Castle of Saffra." So, too, Von Harff, A.D. 1498 (Pilgerfahrt, p. 195). Although situated in a valley, the tribal line must have crossed ("went up," text of Joshua) the hills on the south of it (Keil; Comment. ad loc.). It contains about thirty houses, with the remains of a church, and has a few single palm-trees. Eusebius and Jerome doubtless refer to this place, as "Japhet, in the tribe of Zebulon, still called Jophe, or the ascent of Japho" (Onoma. s.v. Japhic). The Japha (Ι᾿αφά) fortified by Josephus (Life, 37, 45) was probably the same, a large and strong village of Galilee, afterwards captured by Trajan and Titus, under the orders of Vespasian. In the storm and sack of the place, according to the same writer, 15,000 of the inhabitants were put to the sword, and 2130 made captives ( lar, 2, 20, 6; 3:7, 31). With this location De Saulcy (Narrat. 1, 73) and Schwarz (Palestine, p. 170) coincide, as also Van de Velde (ilemnzoi, p. 321) and Porter (Handbook, p. 385).