The Samaritans are a small community that claims to descend from the ancient Israelites—from the biblical Kingdom of Israel, and have continued the Northern Israelite lineage and heritage.
The Samaritans are associated with one of the most famous New Testament parables, known as “The Good Samaritan.” It recounts the incident of a Samaritan man who went out to aid a roadside victim, beaten, robbed and left to die, near Jericho.
The Gospels also tell of Jesus’ encounter with a Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well. Like Jews, Samaritans base their religion on the Torah. Their holy site is at Mount Gerizim, near Shechem, in the heart of the region of Samaria—hence their name—rather than in Jerusalem.
Understanding the Samaritans is a richly illustrated narrative of a unique community surviving despite the odds since biblical times.