From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [1]

TADMOR (Palmyra). In   2 Chronicles 8:4 we read that Solomon built ‘Tadmor in the [Syrian] desert.’ It has long been recognized that Tadmor is here a mistake for ‘ Tamar in the [Judæan] desert’ of the corresponding passage in 1Kings (  1 Kings 9:18 ). The Chronicler, or one of his predecessors, no doubt thought it necessary to emend in this fashion a name that was scarcely known to him. (That it is really the city of Tadmor so famous in after times that is meant, is confirmed by the equally unhistorical details given in   2 Chronicles 8:3-4 regarding the Syrian cities of Hamath and Zobah.) Hence arose the necessity for the Jewish schools to change the Tamar of   1 Kings 9:18 in turn into Tadmor [the Qerç in that passage], so as to agree with the text of the Chronicler. The LXX [Note: Septuagint.] translator of   1 Kings 9:13 appears to have already had this correction before him. Nevertheless it is quite certain that Tamar is the original reading. But the correction supplies a very important evidence that at the time when Chronicles was composed ( c [Note: circa, about.] . b.c. 200), Tadmor was already a place of note, around the founding of which a fabulous splendour had gathered, so that it appeared fitting to attribute it to Solomon. This fiction maintained itself, and received further embellishments. The pre-Islamic poet Nâbigha (  1 Kings 9:22 ff., ed. Ahlwardt, c [Note: circa, about.] . a.d. 600) relates that, by Divine command, the demons built Solomon’s Tadmor by forced labour. This piece of information he may have picked up locally; what he had in view would he, of course, the remains, which must have been still very majestic, of the city whose climax of splendour was reached in the 2nd and 3rd cent. a.d.

Tadmor, of whose origin and earlier history we know nothing, lay upon a great natural road through the desert, not far from the Euphrates, and not very far from Damascus. It was thus between Syria, Babylonia, and Mesopotamia proper. Since water, although not in great abundance, was also found on the spot, Tadmor supplied a peaceable and intelligent population with all the conditions necessary for a metropolis of the caravan trade. Such we find in the case of Palmyra , whose identity with Tadmor was all along maintained, and has recently been assured by numerous inscriptions. The first really historical mention of the place (b.c. 37 or 36) tells how the wealth of this centre of trade incited M. Antony to a pillaging campaign (Appian, Bell. Civ. v. 9).

The endings of the two names Tadmor and Palmyra are the same, but not the first syllable. It is not clear why the Westerns made such an alteration in the form. The name Palmyra can hardly have anything to do with palms . It would, indeed, be something very remarkable if in this Eastern district the Lat. palma was used at so early a date in the formation of names. The Oriental form Tadmor is to be kept quite apart from tâmâr , ‘palm.’ Finally, it is unlikely that the palm was ever extensively cultivated on the spot.

Neither in the OT nor in the NT is there any other mention of Tadmor (Palmyra), and Josephus names it only when he reproduces the above passage of Chronicles ( Ant. VIII. vi. 1). The place exercised, indeed, no considerable influence on the history either of ancient Israel or of early Christianity. There is therefore no occasion to go further into the history, once so glorious and finally so tragic, of the great city, or to deal with the fortunes of the later somewhat inconsiderable place, which now, in spite of its imposing ruins, is desolate in the extreme, but which still bears the ancient name Tadmor ( Tedmur, Tudmur ).

Th. Nöldeke.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [2]

a city built by Solomon,  1 Kings 9:18 , afterward called Palmyra; situated in a wilderness of Syria, upon the borders of Arabia Deserta, inclining toward the Euphrates. Josephus places it two days' journey from the Euphrates, and six days' journey from Babylon. He says there is no water any where else in the wilderness, but in this place. At the present day there are to be seen vast ruins of this city. There was nothing more magnificent in the whole east. There are still found a great number of inscriptions, the most of which are Greek, and the other in the Palmyrenian character. Nothing relating to the Jews is seen in the Greek inscriptions; and the Palmyrenian inscriptions are entirely unknown, as well as the language and the character of that country. The city of Tadmor preserved this name to the time of the conquest by Alexander the Great: then it had the name of Palmyra given to it, which it preserved for several ages. About the middle of the third century, it became famous, because Odenatus and Zenobia, his queen, made it the seat of their empire. When the Saracens became masters of the east, they restored its ancient name of Tadmor to it again, which it has always preserved since. It is surrounded by sandy deserts on all sides. It is not known when, nor by whom, it was reduced to the ruinous condition in which it is now found. It may be said to consist at present of a forest of Corinthian pillars, erect and fallen. So numerous are these, consisting of many thousands, that the spectator is at a loss to connect or arrange them in any order or symmetry, or to conceive what purpose or design they could have answered. "In the space covered by these ruins," says Volney, "we sometimes, find a palace of which nothing remains but the court and walls; sometimes a temple, whose peristyle is half thrown down; and now a portico, a gallery, or triumphal arch. Here stand groups of columns, whose symmetry is destroyed by the fall of many of them; there we see them ranged in rows, of such length, that, similar to rows of trees, they deceive the sight, and assume the appearance of continued walls. If from this striking scene we cast our eyes upon the ground, another almost as varied presents itself. On all sides we behold nothing but subverted shafts, some whole, others shattered to pieces or dislocated in their joints; and on which side soever we look, the earth is strewed with vast stones half buried, with broken entablatures, mutilated friezes, disfigured reliefs, effaced sculptures, violated tombs, and altars defiled by dust."

It is probable, says Mansford, that, although Tadmor is said to have been built by Solomon, or, in other words, to have been erected by him into a city, it was a watering station between Syria and Mesopotamia before; with perhaps accommodations suited to the mode of travelling in those times, as we read of palm trees being found there, which are not trees that come by chance in these desert regions. The mere circumstance of wholesome water being afforded by any spot in such a country was sufficient to give it importance, and to draw toward it the stream of communication, for whatever purpose. This was probably the condition of Tadmor long before it received its name and its honours from Solomon. But, after all, what motive could there be to induce a peaceable king, like Solomon, to undertake a work so distant, difficult, and dangerous? There is but one which at all accords with his character, or the history of the times,— commercial enterprise. Solomon was at great pains to secure himself in the possession of the ports of Elath and Ezion-Geber on the Red Sea, and to establish a navy for his Indian commerce, or trade to Ophir,—in all ages the great source of wealth. The riches of India, thus brought into Judea, were from thence disseminated over those countries of the north and west at that time inhabited or known; while the same country, Judea, became, for a season, like Tyre, the point of return and exchange of the money and the commodities of those countries, the centre of communication between the east and the west.

Smith's Bible Dictionary [3]

Tad'mor. (City Of Palms). Tadmor called "Tadmor In The Wilderness", is the same as the city known to the Greeks and Romansm under the name of Palmyra. It lay between the Euphrates and Hamath, to the southeast of that city, in a fertile tract or oasis of the desert. Being situated at a convenient distance from both the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf, it had great advantages for caravan traffic. It was built by Solomon, after his conquest of Hamath-zobah.  1 Kings 9:18;  2 Chronicles 8:4.

As the city is nowhere else mentioned in the Bible, it would be out of place to enter into a detailed history of it. In the second century A.D. , it seems to have been beautified by the emperor, Hadrian. In the beginning of the third century - 211-217 A.D. - it became a Roman colony under Caracalla. Subsequently, in the reign of Gallienus, the Roman senate invested Odenathus, a senator of Palmyra, with the regal dignity, on account of his services in defeating Sapor, king of Persia.

On the assassination of Odenathus, his wife, Zenobia, seems to have conceived the design of erecting Palmyra into an independent monarchy; and in prosecution of this object, she, for a while, successfully resisted the Roman arms. She was, at length, defeated and taken captive by the emperor Aurelian, A.D. 273, who left a Roman garrison in Palmyra.

This garrison was massacred in a revolt; and Aurelian punished the city, by the execution not only of those who were taken in arms, but likewise of common peasants, of old men, women and children. From this blow, Palmyra never recovered, though there are proofs of its having continued to be inhabited, until the downfall of the Roman empire. The grandeur and magnificence of the ruins of Palmyra cannot be exceeded, and attest its former greatness. Among the most remarkable are the Tombs, the Temple of the Sun, and the Street of Columns.

Fausset's Bible Dictionary [4]

 2 Chronicles 8:4. Built by Solomon in the wilderness. Τamar , Hebrew ( 1 Kings 9:18), meaning "the city of palms," corresponding to Palmyra from Palma "a palm." Solomon fixed on the site, an oasis in the desert which lies between Palestine and Babylonia, as the commercial entrepot between Jerusalem and Babylon. Subsequently, it linked Rome and Parthia by the mutual advantages of trade. In Trajan's time it fell under Rome. Called by Hadrian, who rebuilt it, Hadrianopolis. Under the emperor Gallienus the Roman senate made Odenathus, a senator of Palmyra, its king for having defeated Sapor of Persia. On Odenathus' assassination his widow Zenobia assumed the title Queen of the East, but was conquered and made captive (A.D. 273) by the emperor Aurelian.

Merchants from the English factory at Aleppo, at the close of the 17th century, visited it, and reported their discoveries (Philos. Transact., A.D. 1695, vol. 19, 83). Aglibelus and Melachbelus, i.e. the summer and the winter sun, are named in one inscription (Bochart, Geogr. Sacr., 2:8, section 811). Long lines of Corinthian columns still remain, producing a striking effect; probably of the second and third centuries A.D. A fragment of a building bears Diocletian's name. There are remains of walls of Justinian's time. Robert Wood's "The Ruins of Palmyra," a folio with splendid engravings (A.D 1753), is the best work on Tadmor; see also chap. 11 of Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire."

Morrish Bible Dictionary [5]

City built in the wilderness by Solomon.  2 Chronicles 8:4 . Josephus (Ant. viii. 6,1) says it was the same as that which the Greeks called PALMYRA,and that it was built so far away because there were springs there, but no water nearer in that direction. Palmyra was situated about midway between Damascus and Tiphsah or Thapsacus on the Euphrates. It is still called Tadmur , about 34 40' N, 38 15' E . In the time of the Romans it was a large and splendid city, of which there are columns still standing and remarkable ruins.

In  1 Kings 9:18 a city is called in the A.V. Tadmor; but the Hebrew text is TAMAR, as in the R.V. (Tadmor being the reading of the Keri ). Though this was also built by Solomon in the wilderness, it is added 'in the land,' whereas Tadmor was outside. The towns also mentioned in this passage are connected with the south of the land, so that it is doubtless a different place, and may be the same as Tamar in  Ezekiel 47:19;  Ezekiel 48:28 .

People's Dictionary of the Bible [6]

Tadmor ( Tăd'M Ôr ). Heb. Tamar, Palms. A city in the wilderness, built by Solomon.  1 Kings 9:18, R. V., "Tamar;"  2 Chronicles 8:4. There is no other Scripture mention of this city. It has usually been identified with the famous city of Palmyra. Palmyra occupied the most favorable position on the great caravan route between the rich cities of the East and the ports of the Mediterranean. Palmyra was mentioned by Pliny, Josephus, Jerome, and other early writers. The ruins extend over a plain about three or four miles in circuit.

Easton's Bible Dictionary [7]

 2 Chronicles 8:4 1 Kings 9:18 Ezekiel 47:19 48:28 2 Chronicles 8:14Solomon

Holman Bible Dictionary [8]

 2 Chronicles 8:4 1 Kings 9:18

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [9]

Tad´mor or Tamar, a town built by King Solomon . The name Tamar signifies a palm-tree, and hence the Greek and Roman designation of Palmyra, 'city of palms;' but this name never superseded the other among the natives, who even to this day give it the name of Thadmor. Palm trees are still found in the gardens around the town, but not in such numbers as would warrant, as they once did, the imposition of the name. Tadmor was situated between the Euphrates and Hamath, to the south-east of that city, in a fertile tract or oasis of the desert. It was built by Solomon, probably with the view of securing an interest in and command over the great caravan traffic from the east, similar to that which he had established in respect of the trade between Syria and Egypt.

Tadmor was for a long period under the sway of the Romans. But in the third century it attained independence under Odenatus and his celebrated consort Zenobia. It returned again, however, under the dominion of the Romans, and after various vicissitudes of fortune, it ultimately fell into the hands of the successors of Mohammed. From about the middle of the eighth century it seems gradually to have fallen into decay, but its magnificent ruins were scarcely known in Europe till towards the close of the seventeenth century.

The ruins cover a sandy plain stretching along the bases of a range of mountains called Jebel Belaes, running nearly north and south, dividing the great desert from the desert plains extending westward towards Damascus, and the north of Syria. The general aspect which these relics of ancient art and magnificence present, is well described by Volney:—'In the space covered by these ruins we sometimes find a palace, of which nothing remains but the court and walls; sometimes a temple whose peristyle is half thrown down; and now a portico, a gallery, or triumphal arch. Here stand groups of columns, whose symmetry is destroyed by the fall of many of them; there, we see them ranged in rows of such length that, similar to rows of trees, they deceive the sight and assume the appearance of continued walls. If from this striking scene we cast our eyes upon the ground, another, almost as varied, presents itself; on all sides we behold nothing but subverted shafts, some whole, others shattered to pieces, or dislocated in their joints; and on which side soever we look, the earth is strewed with vast stones, half buried; with broken entablatures, mutilated friezes, disfigured reliefs, effaced sculptures, violated tombs, and altars defiled by dust.'

The present Tadmor consists of numbers of peasants' mud huts, clustered together around the great Temple of the Sun. This temple is the most remarkable and magnificent ruin of Palmyra. The court by which it was enclosed was 179 feet square, within which a double row of columns was continued all round. They were 390 in number, of which about sixty still remain standing. In the middle of the court stood the temple, an oblong quadrangular building, surrounded with columns, of which about twenty still exist, though without capitals, of which they have been plundered, probably because they were composed of metal. In the interior, at the south end, is now the humble mosque of the village.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [10]

tad´mor , tad´mōr ( תּדמר , tadhmōr ): A city built by Solomon in the wilderness (  2 Chronicles 8:4 ), the Roman Palmyra. Tadmor is the native name and is found on inscriptions. It occurs also in the Ḳerē of  1 Kings 9:18 , where the Kethı̄bh or consonants read "Tamar" (compare  Ezekiel 47:19;  Ezekiel 48:28 ). It is famous in Arabian as well as in Hebrew literature, and enters Roman history in connection with Zenobia and Longinus. The inscriptions, which belong for the most part to the latter period (266-73 AD), have been published by Dawkins and Wood and also by M. Waddington and the Duc de Luynes. Popular works on the subject are An Account of Palmyra and Zenobia by W. Wright, and The Last Days and Fall of Palmyra by W. Ware. See Tamar .

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [11]

Bibliography Information McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Tadmor'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/t/tadmor.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.