, is this also the episcopal city of Chrysopolis in Arabia?
For this statement, I would like to cite some evidence which, of course, must conform with the archaeological findings and thus, can be a helpful tool.
When I first visited the Wadi ez Zerka in 2002, I first noticed the high ridge to the west of Tell, which contained at least one access road and probably an old water pipe. Additionally, some late Roman Byzantine times attributed column bases and capitals could be found even if they had already in part slipped down the western Tell. On the opposite northern mountain slope, a few remnants of an old aqueduct route existed. During the second visit in 2004, I led a group of Prof. J. Jeremias to the Tullul. However, excavations on a large scale had not begun yet; but we were not only impressed by the outstanding landscape aspect of this place, but also by the extent of the ruins of the two hills. Due to many years of private research on the territory of southern Syria and northern Jordan, I came to the following thesis. In the case of Tullul which, without any doubt, had populated far before the calendar, it is very possible that it is the diocese of Chrysopolis in Arabia from the Byzantine time.
I would like to quote the following statements:
- The prominent partially embossed walls of the eastern Tell and the visible pillars, bases and ornament (debris) at that time, also point to a settlement at Roman / Byz. time.
- The name of the ancient river Jabbok, today's Nahr ez Zerka, was demonstrably Chrysohoras at that time (see also names of Gerasa from that time)
- At least a clear parallel between the content meaning of the name of the diocese and the present day exist. Although certainly every traveler in this region had believed the handed-down stories of the Golden Hills (according to the statement of the population, actually every hill of ruins is such). Also, its current name could originated from this.
The border between the dioceses largely corresponded to the former Roman provinces of Pal. I, Pal. II, Arabia / Pal.III and ran along at the eastern Jordan valley (Ghor). The Der Alla lying on the western valley exit, which is identified with Amathous in Pal., already belonged to the Archdiocese of Ceasarea (Pal. I). Whereas both Gerasa, located northeast, and Bacatha in Ara. southeast of the Tullul, were assigned to the archbishopric Bostra.
All those statements are certainly just suggestions and approaches for the identification, and any assignment of inscriptions could be much more precise; but perhaps, I can start a discussion about this topic and thus contribute to a solution.