Ke'desh (Heb. id., קֶדֶשׁ, sanctuary; Sept. Κέδες, but Κάδες in Jos 21:32; Κάδης in Jg 4:6, v. r. 9: Κεδεέ v. r. in 1Ch 6:72), the name of three towns in Palestine.
1. A city in the extreme southern part of the territory originally assigned to Judah (Jos 15:23, where it is mentioned between Adadah and Hazor), and doubtless included in the portion afterwards set off to Simeon (Jos 19:1-9). As the associated places seem to indicate a position towards the Dead Sea, we may conjecture that it was the same as KADESH-BARNEA (the names being the same in Heb.), which lay there, and is not mentioned in either of the foregoing lists, although it certainly was included within the district indicated.
2. A Levitical city of the tribe of Issachar (1Ch 6:72), otherwise called KISION (Jos 19:20; "Kishon," 21:28).
3. A "fenced city" of Naphtali (Jos 19:37, where it is mentioned between Hazor and Edrei), hence also called KEDESH-NAPHTALI (i.e. Kadesh of Naphtali, Jg 4:6); appointed as one of the cities of refuge (Jos 19:7, where it is located on Mt. Naphtali), being a Levitical city assigned to the Geshonites (Jos 21:32; 1Ch 6:76). It was one of the original Canaanitish royal cities, whose chieftains were slain by Joshua (Jos 12:22). and was reckoned as a Galilsean town (Jos 19:7; Jos 21:32; 1Ch 6:76). It was the residence of Barak (Jg 4:6), and there he and Deborah assembled the tribes of Zebulon and Naphtali before the conflict (ver. 9,10). Near it was the tree of Zaananim, where was pitched the tent of the Kenites Heber and Jael, in which Sisera met his death (ver. 11). It was probably as its name implies, a "holy place" of great antiquity, which would explain its selection as one of the cities of refuge; and its being chosen by the prophetess as the spot at which to meet the warriors of the tribes before the commencement of the struggle " for Jehovah among the mighty." It was one of the places depopulated by Tiglath-pileser (2Ki 15:29). Josephus calls it Kedesa (ἡ Κέδεσα, Ant. 5:1, 18, and 24) or Cydisa (Ant. 9, 11, 1), and places it under the name of Cedasa (Κεδάσα), on the border between Galilee and Tyre (Ant. 13:5, 6), to the latter of which it adhered in' the final struggle (War, 3, 18, 1). It was here that Jonathan the Maccabee gained the victory over the princes of Demetrius (Κάδης, 1 Macc. 11:63,73). It is probably the same with the Cydis (Κύδις ἡ Νεφθαλί) mentioned as the birthplace of Tobit (i, 1). Eusebius (Ononzast. s.v. Κεδές) mentions it by the name of Cydossos (Κυδοσσός, Jerome Cidissus), as lying in the neighborhood .of Paneas, about 20 Roman miles from Tyre. It is also probably the same with the strongly-fortified place in this district called Cydyssi by Josephus (Κυδυσσοί, War, 4:2, 3). Kedesh was situated near the "plain" of Zaanaim, on. the route taken by Barak (who was a native 'of the place) in the pursuit of Sisera, and hence must have been beyond Mt. Tabor, in the direction from the Kishon (Jg 4:6,9-11). The indications correspond very well to the position of the modern village of
Kedes, discovered by Dr. Robinson on the hills west of the lake el-Huleh (Researches, 3:355; Biblibtheca Sacra, 1843, p. 11). and fully described by Rev. E. Smith (Bibl. Sac. 1849, p. 374, 375) as being a small place romantically situated on a hill in a rich and beautiful plain,- abundantly supplied with water, and containing extensive ruins apparently of Roman origin (see also Robinson's Researches, new edit., 3:366-369; Van de Velde, Narrative, ii, 417). From the 12th century (Benj. of Tudela, in Bohl's Early Travels, p. 89) it has been reputed to possess the graves of Deborah, Barak, Ahinoam, Jael, and Heber (Schwarz, Palest. p. 183; comp. p. 91). Porter, in 1858, saw close by the site the black tents of nomads pitched under the terebinths (Handbook for Palest. p. 443), like those of Heber the Kenite (Jg 4:11.).
"In the Greek (Κυδίως) and Syriac (Kedesh de Naphtali) texts 'of Tob. 1:2 though not in the Vilgate or A.V. — Kedesh is introduced as the birthplace of Tobias. The text is exceedingly corrupt, but some little support is lent to this reading by the Vulgate, which, although omitting Kedesh, mentions Safed-post viam quae ducit ad .Occidentem, in sinistro habens civitatem Saphet.
"The name Kedesh exists much farther north than the possessions of Naphtali would appear to have extended, attached to a lake of considerable size on the Orontes, a few miles south of Hums, the ancient Emessa (Thomson, in Ritter, Damascus, p. 1002 sq.). The lake was well known under that name to the Arabic geographers (see, besides the authorities quoted by Robinson [iii, 594, new ed.], Abulfeda in Schultenis's Index Geogr., 'Fluvius Orontes,' and 'Kudsum'), aid they connect it in part with Alexander the Great. But this and the origin of the name are alike uncertain. At the lower end of the lake is an island which, as already remarked, is possibly the site of Ketesh, the capture of which by Sethos I is preserved in the records of that Egyptian king" (Smith).