District: Gaza

Population 1948: 420

Occupation date: 01/07/1948

Jewish settlements on village/town land before 1948: None

Jewish settlements on village/town land after 1948: None


The village stood on a slightly elevated spot on the southern coastal plain, bordered on the southeast side by Wadi Suqrir, about 34 km. northeast of Gaza. Crusader scholars seem to be convinced that the castle of Geladia was built on the site of Khirbat Jaladiyya and point to fragments of architecture as evidence for this.

According to Ottoman documents there were 88 inhabitants in the village in 1596. It is possible that the village was abandoned during the 17-th century and was repopulated only in the 1870-ies. The 1931 census registered 228 inhabitants living in houses built of adobe. By 1944-45 the number had increased to 360, all of whom were Muslims. At this time the lands of the village covered 4329 dunams.

In 1890 a mosque was constructed on the order of the Ottoman Sultan Abd al- Hamid II. It had two sections, one for prayer, one for teaching and 43 students attended the mosque school in the mid 1940s. Rainfed agriculture, mostly cereals was the basis of the villages economy.

Occupation and Depopulation
Between the two truce of the war, a period also known as "the ten days" the Israeli army launched an offensive on the southern front to extend its area of control southwards towards the Naqab (Negev). In the process 16 villages between the coast and the Hebron foothills were conquered and at least 20,000 people were uprooted from their homes.

According to Benny Morris al-Jaladiyya was conquered in the ,first stages of the operation on July 9-th to 10-th by the Givati brigade. The inhabitants fled eastwards to Hebron like most inhabitants of the area or southwards to Gaza. Givati sources claimed that the inhabitants fled before the entry of the army although their orders required the villagers to be expelled.

Occupation and Depopulation
Only a few date-palm, carob and fig trees remain. The lands are cultivated by Israeli farmers.

Walid Khalidi' All that remains, 1990, 113-114
Information from additional sources:
According to estimates by Salman Abu Sitta, researcher on Palestinian refugees 418inhabitants lived in the village in 1948. )Salman Abu Sitta, The Palestinian Nakba 1948, 2000, 46(
According to the Mapa Encyclopedia an ancient ruin, Khirbat Gelida stands  on the lands of Moshav Zarhia. The site has not yet been excavated. (Mapa Encyclopedia 2000, 3, 25)