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[buh-thez-duh] /bəˈθɛz də/
a pool in Biblical Jerusalem, believed to have healing powers. John 5:2–4.
a city in central Maryland; residential suburb of Washington, D.C.
(lowercase) a chapel. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Bethesda
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • At this time his intended college at Bethesda occupied much of his attention.

    George Whitefield Joseph Belcher
  • Wait until my father has taken thee to the Pool of Bethesda!

    Christmas Light Ethel Calvert Phillips
  • Under this strict regime, as was to be expected, there was not a little restlessness at Bethesda, as the chapel was called.

  • I would have it like the porch—not of Bethesda, but of heaven itself.

    Weighed and Wanting George MacDonald
  • On returning to Bethesda, his heart seems to have been full of the orphan-house and the college.

    George Whitefield Joseph Belcher
British Dictionary definitions for Bethesda


(New Testament) a pool in Jerusalem reputed to have healing powers, where a paralysed man was healed by Jesus (John 5:2)
a chapel of any of certain Nonconformist Christian sects
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Bethesda

1857, name of a pool in Jerusalem (John v:2), from Greek Bethesda, from Aramaic beth hesda "house of mercy," or perhaps "place of flowing water." Popular as a name for religious meeting houses among some Protestant denominations.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Bethesda in the Bible

house of mercy, a reservoir (Gr. kolumbethra, "a swimming bath") with five porches, close to the sheep-gate or market (Neh. 3:1; John 5:2). Eusebius the historian (A.D. 330) calls it "the sheep-pool." It is also called "Bethsaida" and "Beth-zatha" (John 5:2, R.V. marg.). Under these "porches" or colonnades were usually a large number of infirm people waiting for the "troubling of the water." It is usually identified with the modern so-called Fountain of the Virgin, in the valley of the Kidron, and not far from the Pool of Siloam (q.v.); and also with the Birket Israel, a pool near the mouth of the valley which runs into the Kidron south of "St. Stephen's Gate." Others again identify it with the twin pools called the "Souterrains," under the convent of the Sisters of Zion, situated in what must have been the rock-hewn ditch between Bezetha and the fortress of Antonia. But quite recently Schick has discovered a large tank, as sketched here, situated about 100 feet north-west of St. Anne's Church, which is, as he contends, very probably the Pool of Bethesda. No certainty as to its identification, however, has as yet been arrived at. (See FOUNTAIN ØT0001378; GIHON.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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