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Kiryat Ata (Hebrew: קִרְיַת אָתָא; also Qiryat Ata) is a city in the Haifa District of Israel. Also still known by its former name of Kfar Ata (Hebrew: כְּפַר עָטָּה), in 2018 it had a population of 58,267.[1]

Kiryat Ata

  • קִרְיַת אָתָא
Hebrew transcription(s)
 • ISO 259Qiryat ʔataˀ
 • Also spelledQiryat Ata (official)
Kiryat Ata (unofficial)
Kiryat ata.jpg
Official logo of Kiryat Ata
Kiryat Ata is located in Haifa region of Israel
Kiryat Ata
Kiryat Ata
Coordinates: 32°48′N 35°06′E / 32.800°N 35.100°E / 32.800; 35.100Coordinates: 32°48′N 35°06′E / 32.800°N 35.100°E / 32.800; 35.100
Grid position160/244 PAL
Country Israel
District Haifa
 • TypeCity (from 1969)
 • MayorYaakov Peretz
 • Total16,706 dunams (16.706 km2 or 6.450 sq mi)
 • Total58,267
 • Density3,500/km2 (9,000/sq mi)


The Early Bronze Age site at Qiryat Ata has been extensively excavated since 1990, revealing stratified remains from the Neolithic, EB (=early Bronze age), IB and EB II periods.[2][3][4][5] At Tell el ‘Idham remains from a continuous habitation from the early Bronze age, through the Persian age down to the Roman era have been identified.[6]

Archaeologists Mordechai Aviam and Dan Barag (1935–2009) thought it to be the Capharatha (Greek: Καφαραθ᾽) mentioned by Josephus[7] in the Lower Galilee, one of several views tentatively identified for the site.[8]

Rock-hewn winepresses dating to the Byzantine era have been found here. Some have had crosses and Greek letters incised, supporting the theory that there was a Byzantine monastery located in the area.[9][10] Ceramics from the Byzantine era have also been found here,[11][12] and a building from the Byzantine or early Islamic period has been excavated.[12]

In 1283 it was mentioned as part of the domain of the Crusaders, according to the hudna between the Crusaders and the Mamluk sultan Qalawun. At the time it was called Kafrata.[13] Ceramics from the Mamluk era have also been found here.[12][14] An excavation at Independence Street, Qiryat Ata, showed nearly continuous settlement dating from the Persian and Hellenistic eras up to the Mamluk era (late eleventh–early fifteenth century CE).[15]

Ottoman eraEdit

Incorporated into the Ottoman Empire in 1517, Kufrata appeared in the census of 1596, located in the Nahiya of Acca, part of Safad Sanjak. The population was 15 households, all Muslim. They paid a fixed tax rate of 20% on wheat, barley, fruit trees, cotton, goats and beehives, in addition to occasional revenues; a total of 1508 akçe.[16][17] The village appeared under the name of Koufour Tai on the map that Pierre Jacotin compiled during Napoleon's invasion of 1799.[18]

In 1859 the population was estimated to be 100, and the cultivation was 16 feddans.[19] In 1875 Victor Guérin visited, and found the village to have 50 houses.[20] In 1881 the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine described Kefr Etta[21] as "a small adobe village, on the plain, with a well on the north and olives on the east."[19]

A population list from about 1887 showed that Kh. Kefr Etta had about 285 inhabitants; all Muslims.[22]

British Mandate eraEdit

Kiryat Ata, 1947

In the 1922 census of Palestine conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Kufritta showed a population of 400; 7 Christians and 393 Muslims,[23] where all the Christians were of the Orthodox faith.[24]

In 1925 a Zionist organisation purchased 10,000 dunums in Kefr Etta from Alexander Sursock, of the Sursock family of Beirut. At the time, there were 75 families living there.[25]

In the 1931 census Kufritta had a population of 4 Muslims and 29 Jews, in a total of 13 occupied houses.[26]

In the 1945 statistics the population of Kefar Atta (Kufritta) consisted of 1,690 Jews and the land area was 6,131 dunams, according to an official land and population survey.[27][28] Of this, 6 dunams were designated for citrus and bananas, 39 dunams for plantations and irrigable land, 1,527 for cereals,[29] while 3,591 dunams were built-up areas.[30]

Kiryat AtaEdit

HaTzionut Boulevard

In the early 20th century, the lands of the Arab village of Kefr Etta were purchased by a Warsaw religious foundation named "Avodat Israel" through intermediaries in the American Zion Commonwealth. Avodat Israel founded Kfar Ata in 1925. During the 1929 Arab riots the town was attacked and abandoned. A year later the residents returned and rebuilt the community. It was renamed Kiryat Ata in 1965 when the village was merged with adjacent Kiryat Binyamin.[citation needed]


Kiryat Ata has a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and cool and rainy winters. The hottest month is July and the coldest is February. Snowfall is rare, but snow was recorded three times in the 20th century: in 1950, 1992 and 1999. Annual precipitation is approximately 524 millimeters (21 in).


According to CBS, in 2001 the ethnic makeup of the city was 99.8% Jewish and other non-Arab, without significant Arab population. See Population groups in Israel. According to CBS, in 2001 there were 23,700 males and 24,900 females. The population of the city was spread out with 31.4% 19 years of age or younger, 15.7% between 20 and 29, 18.5% between 30 and 44, 18.3% from 45 to 59, 4.1% from 60 to 64, and 11.9% 65 years of age or older. The population growth rate in 2001 was 0.8%.


In 2000, there were 17,236 salaried workers and 1,226 self-employed. The mean monthly wage was ILS 5,157. Salaried males had a mean monthly wage of ILS 6,759 (a real change of 4.6%) versus ILS 3,456 for females (a real change of 2.7%). The mean income for the self-employed was 6,470. There were 1,092 people who received unemployment benefits and 4,153 people who received an income guarantee.

Panorama of Kiryat Ata


In 2000, there were 20 schools and 8,762 students in the city: 14 elementary schools with 4,899 students, and 11 high schools with 3,863 students. 52.0% of 12th graders were entitled to a matriculation certificate in 2001.


The city's main football club, Maccabi Ironi Kiryat Ata, plays in Liga Alef, the third tier of Israeli football. The local basketball club, Elitzur Kiryat Ata, are in Ligat HaAl, the top division.


Archaeological surveys at Khirbet Sharta in the northeast part of the city revealed traces of habitation dating to the Bronze, Iron, Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, and Mamluk eras.[citation needed] In 2010, an archaeological survey was conducted at the ancient site of Kiryat Ata by Hagit Turge on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA),[31] and in 2014 and 2016 by Orit Segal.[32]

Sister citiesEdit

Notable peopleEdit


  1. ^ a b "Population in the Localities 2018" (XLS). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 25 August 2019. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  2. ^ Golani, 2006, Qiryat Ata
  3. ^ Tabar, 2010, Qiryat Ata
  4. ^ Hamid, 2010, Qiryat Ata
  5. ^ Golani, 2012, Qiryat Ata
  6. ^ Volynsky, 2012, Qiryat Ata
  7. ^ Josephus, Vita 185 (§ 37)
  8. ^ Aviam, 2004, p. 92
  9. ^ Talmi, 2013, Qiryat Ata, Giv‘at Allonim (B)
  10. ^ Talmi, 2013, Qiryat Ata, Giv‘at Allonim (A)
  11. ^ Dauphin, 1998, p. 669
  12. ^ a b c Bouchenino, 2005, Qiryat Ata
  13. ^ al-Qalqashandi version of the hudna, referred in Barag, 1979, p. 207, no. 59
  14. ^ Shadman, 2006, Qiryat Ata
  15. ^ The Mamluk (and any later) era had been severely disturbed by modern development. See Torgë and Sa‘id, 2015, Qiryat Ata
  16. ^ Hütteroth and Abdulfattah, 1977, p. 193
  17. ^ Note that Rhode, 1979, p. 6 writes that the Safad register that Hütteroth and Abdulfattah studied was not from 1595/6, but from 1548/9
  18. ^ Karmon, 1960, p. 162
  19. ^ a b Conder and Kitchener, 1881, SWP I, p. 285
  20. ^ Guérin, 1880, p. 409
  21. ^ meaning "Village of Etta", where Etta is a personal name, according to Palmer, 1881, p. 110
  22. ^ Schumacher, 1888, p. 178
  23. ^ Barron, 1923, Table XI, Sub-District of Haifa, p. 33
  24. ^ Barron, 1923, Table XVI, p. 49
  25. ^ List of villages sold by Sursocks and their partners to the Zionists since British occupation of Palestine, evidence to the Shaw Commission, 1930
  26. ^ Mills, 1932, p. 94
  27. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics, 1945, p. 14
  28. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 48
  29. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 90
  30. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 140
  31. ^ Israel Antiquities Authority, Excavators and Excavations Permit for Year 2010, Survey Permit # A-5948
  32. ^ Israel Antiquities Authority, Excavators and Excavations Permit for Year 2014, Survey Permit # A-7186; Excavators and Excavations Permit for Year 2016, Survey Permit # A-7672


External linksEdit