Mount Horeb – Saudi Arabia - Atlas Obscura

Mount Horeb

Site where Moses may have received the Ten Commandments. 


Thought to mean Glowing/Heat, Mount Horeb is one of two names given to a mountain mentioned in the book of Deuteronomy in the Hebrew Bible as a site where the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God. Described in Exodus at the Mountain of G-d, Horeb is also known as the Mountain of Yhvh.

While, officially, the location of Mount Horeb is unknown, Jewish and Christian scholars have long argued as to its whereabouts since biblical times. Elijah is described as having traveled to the site in 1 Kings 19:8, which would imply that its location was familiar at the time that book was written, but there are no biblical references set at a later time.

Still, some have decided that this mountain in Saudi Arabia fits the biblical description, despite the lack of precise Biblical information as to the geographic location of the site. There is an altar at the mountain’s base. There are warning markers around the base that Moses was instructed to make. The rock that gushed water is nearby. The top of the mountain is black because as the Bible says God came down on the mountain with fire.

Visitors are welcome near the site, but the entire mountain is covered in a barbed wire fence and armed Saudi guards that keep patrol, so getting too close is out of the question. The area is supposedly littered with grinding stones for manna, also there are Egyptian and Hebrew carvings on rocks.

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